“Just tell me I’m not crazy. My parents think we’re nuts. My friends think we’re becoming monks.”
We hear from people each week who are selling houses. Downsizing. Purging. Simplifying. Bucking fashion trends. Choosing to step off the treadmill and take an early exit from the rat race.
This isn’t normal, you know.
Normal says to leverage your current house for something bigger and more impressive.
Normal says you should be embarrassed at driving a 15 year old minivan.
Normal says you should be dedicating every weekend to being your kids’ personal Uber driver, ensuring they don’t miss any of those team sports that are critical to their college career which is crucial to their corporate career.
Normal says you should be dropping off last year’s clothes at Goodwill on your way to the store to buy what’s in this year.
You aren’t alone in deciding that normal looks pretty crazy some days.
Other Non-Normal Folks
We’ve come across some other groups we’d like to tell you about. They are similar in that they attract people with the desire to simplify, declutter, and focus on relationships and experiences over possessions.
They are different in that they aren’t necessarily for people looking to leave the suburbs, or homeschool, or travel.
Ditching Suburbia Manifesto Shirt
Suburbia-ditchers have different values than most people - tell the world what they are:
Simpler Living. Closer Family. Richer Education. Uncommon Adventures.
Styles available: t-Shirts, tank tops, and hoodies.
Colors available: black, navy, gray.
A movement to bring people together around the spirit and action of simple-living. From the local to global level and through passions ranging from mindfulness to minimalism, we exist to make the simple, sustainable choice the default one once again. We invite you to join us and do simplicity your way, at your speed, and with your people.SimpleREV.com
I spoke with SimpleREV co-leader Joel Zaslofsky a few weeks ago and jokingly referred to DitchingSuburbia and SimpleREV as “sitting in a tree, k i s s i n g” - the efforts are that closely aligned, even if the final outcome looks different.
Buddies Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus began blogging about simplifying and downsizing in 2010.
They’ve also launched a local meetup effort in major cities around the world.
We recently attended the Austin, TX meetup where we Skyped with Ryan and shared our tiny living experience with the local group. We met tiny house dwellers, other RVers, and people downsizing to backpacks for some international travel.
No matter if your ultimate goal is to actually ditch the suburbs, or just simpler and more mindful living, or something in between. There are communities that won’t think you are crazy monks-in-training.
Indeed they may need to hear your story.
So g’wan - find them.
Let’s change normal.