Tag Archives: downshifting

Day in the Life of a Downshifter – Issue 10

Over the last fifteen years, I have relocated from Sydney to a regional centre, have stopped wearing uncomfortable suits, have stopped using a car, have moved from a house to a multi-residence, decreased my income by about 60% and changed my hairstyle from slick to clipper-cut. I have increased my ability to change the society we live in, increased my ability to do what I believe is right and increased my satisfaction in life.

I now see just how much I have to be grateful for.

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Are we prepared to change to prevent climate change?

What is needed to get us out of our comfort zone and fight for our children’s future?

Consume less, share more and stand up against fossil fuels, urban sprawl, destructive infrastructures and resource extractivism. And, above all, fight for an economy that can fulfil everyone’s basic needs within the natural boundaries of a healthy planet.

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The Labour-Saving Paradox

Humans are more than the one-trick pony our obsession with technological fixes depicts us as. We are adaptable, and have the capacity to approach our problems from a variety of angles. We also have the capacity to exercise restraint when necessary. And we can break the cycle of the labour-saving paradox, if we think outside the tool-box.

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Coping With a Post-Peak Future

So I first learnt about peak oil back in 2005, when The End of Suburbia was shown at an activist skillshare. And while I didn’t go into denial per se, I didn’t really accept it. It was like if anyone had asked me about it, I would’ve said, “yeah peak oil’s really full on, I don’t know what we’re gonna do about that”. But at the same time, it didn’t impact the way I was living my life, or my strategy for changing the world in any way at all. Of course I already knew all about climate change, supposedly wasn’t in denial of that either, yet was still choosing to work on projects that were largely irrelevant to it.

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Renovating Culture: Rise of the New Domesticity

When my mother and grandmother were my age, they knew how to cook, clean, sew and garden, while I grew up on Disney cartoons and microwaved pizza, beheading barbie dolls and pressing complex buttons on a machine. Despite the yuppie conditioning imposed upon gen-Xers and Millennials to equate self-actualisation with technocentric careerism and “having it all”, the pull of re-skilling in the domestic arts has never been more alluring.

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