Well, we all hear this term at some moment of our life, but what does it mean? Is there a specific way that can be categorized as self-sufficiency?
Well, the answer is no. There is no such definition that can fit everyone.
Self-sufficiency to you can be right where you are and could mean another world to anyone else. So let us explore what does the term means and what all variations it has.
Self-sufficiency can be explained in two different ways.
First, Self- sufficiency means one can supply his own needs without any external help or assistance. Or, it could also mean, having the utmost confidence in one’s resources.
The term is different for everyone, for example, It could be living at your own house with a farm where you can grow all your food. It can be living in a city like New York and managing for all the ups and down soon. Self- sufficiency is a very broad lifestyle that varies hugely from person to person.
GROW YOUR FOOD
Start a Herb Kitchen Garden
Getting these expensive herbs from the supermarket is a big pain in the ass. Herbs are very expensive. So instead of buying these, you can always plant some herbs in your kitchen. Now you must be wondering how can we plant herbs in our kitchen, Yes you can and that too with little maintenance only. You just need to plant these near a window where there is an ample amount of sunlight. Now next time you want a herb just grab it from your kitchen garden. You get fresh and organic herbs just with little effort.
Grow a Planter Garden
You want to grow vegetables at home but don’t have access to the lawn. You might live in a rented apartment but growing your crops isn’t a dream anymore. You can use these planters and have easy access to the vegetables/fruits you always wanted to grow.
Learn How to Hunt
Now that we know how to grow crops in our home garden we need to know how to hunt. Hunting is very necessary for survival. No matter in what geographical area are you living there is some hunting that you can always do. You don’t want that extra fattened chicken whose sole purpose of life is to get fat and then get butchered. Now not every season is hunting season but you can hunt in abundance during hunting season and freeze it for further consumption.
Learn to Butcher
Now even if you learn how to hunt its very important for you to know how to butcher. If you don’t know how to butcher, then you might waste all those important chunks of meat that could be consumed but due to lack of knowledge are thrown into a gutter. Butchering can save your extra bucks also as you don’t have to pay any extra amount to the butcher to get your meat chopped.
Learn to Fish and How to Clean Them
Yes, fishing is a part of hunting, but the process is very different. Fishing can be done from any pool, lake or river nearby. Fishing is a game of patience, you don’t need many skills to get the knack of it. Take your fishing pole, line, hook and bait ready. It’s not very difficult to learn but is an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids and minerals like iron, zinc, iodine, magnesium, and potassium. The processing of fish is an art that requires time and practice.
Get Your Dairy Animal
Fresh raw milk is very good for our health. If you have some extra space do add cows or goats. If the milk is in abundance you can also make a living out of it. A1 milk is very expensive in the market as its very nutritious as compared to processed milk available in supermarkets.
Open Your Little Bee Farm
If bees disappear at this rate ten the end of mankind is near. Einstein the great once said, “If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live.” Bees are an essential part of our ecosystem as they help us produce food. Organic Honey is very expensive and rare in the market. The honey we use in our daily lives is not even real honey. Bees generally produce a lot more honey than they require. By purchasing a bee farm kit we can easily harvest a lot of honey every season. You can also make candles with the bee wax which is left after honey harvesting.
GO GREEN, LEARN NEW SKILLS, BECOME ENERGY EFFICIENT
Ditch The Idiot Box
In a world full of wonders you don’t want that mindless shit to enter your mind. Seriously if you want to entertain yourself there are a lot of ways instead of watching the Idiot Box and wasting your money on electricity and cable bills. You will save around $1500 a year if you just stop your cable subscription. You also get rid of those luring ads which make you buy shit you don’t even want to.
Install Water Harvesting System
Water is not something that we generally think can disappear from our lives soon, but what happens if it does. I’m not asking you to be a prepper, but suppose a tree feels at your main water supply and from an abundance of water you go waterless for days in the worse case for months if the loss is severe. You will understand what exactly I want to convey. During the rainy season, you can install rain pipelines made of bamboo which are then connected to the main reservoir. This reservoir will help you in case of an emergency when you don’t have access to modern-day sources. Dig a well. Well water is an excellent source of accumulated water. Most houses use it to fulfill daily essential water needs. For drinking, you can use distillation or water softeners to improve water quality.
Learn How to Make Soap
It’s a pretty easy job if you get how to melt and pour. Yes, making it from scratch is a time-consuming process, but the outcome will make you astonished. It’s very cheap as compared to buying a bar of soap from your general store. Once you get the knack of it you will love making these soaps you can also sell these at a very good price as handmade soaps admire the market.
Make Your Cleaning Agent
Instead of buying expensive chemicals and cleansers. It’s good to create a cleaning agent naturally at home. You will be surprised by what a lime and bottle of vinegar can do. Every citrus fruit acts as a perfect cleaning agent. These things are not overpriced and can be easily grown in your backyard farm. So stop spending on Harsh chemicals and overpriced cleansers, Just clean with your homegrown resources.
Learn How to Light a Fire
What happens if there is a power outage in your area? What will you do? You must know how to light a fire in cases like this. Now by lighting fire, I don’t mean to use electricity and ignite your fireplace. You must know how to light up a fire outside your home by not using electricity. There are many fire starter kits available if you don’t know how to traditionally light up a fire. A magnesium strip is attached with a starter which strikes a sparkle. The sparkle is done usually on dry twigs, leaves, etc.
Install Solar Panel
With the electricity being scarce and resources being limited, we all need to find alternative options to generate electricity. One of the best options is installing solar panels. Yes, the cost might pinch you but when you think for the long run its a total win-win situation. It has a one-time installation cost with lifetime benefits. Solar energy uses captured sunlight to create Photovoltaic power for solar heating. This conversion allows this energy to be used to power lights, pools, heaters, auto motives, and gadgets. When you are planning to live frugally what’s better than producing your electricity and saving huge chunks that you spent by paying electricity bills.
Learn Canning Your Food
You must be thinking how can we can food on our own and which food shall we can? You can even can food which you buy from a supermarket or which you produce at your farm. If you find a good deal at organic produce always pick some extra of it and can it for future usage.
Learn How to Cook
Now cooking is a very essential element for you to live independently. It is one of the most essential needs you need to fulfill. Instead of purchasing all the ingredients like herbs, fruits and vegetables you can grow these at your home farm and
Lean How to Build
I know that you don’t have the skills to build a whole building, but you must know how to fix damages in case of any unseen circumstances. Just suppose your roof fells in case of heavy rainfall. You should know how to fix it in case you can’t find a repairman.
Learn How to Ferment Food
Fermented foods are very useful to us. They help our gut to develop healthy flora which helps us to stay healthy. All diseases start from the gut. The bacteria that live in your gut have a significant impact on our immune system. Fermentation helps us increase the shelf life of various products. Fermentation helps break down nutrients in food, which makes them easier to digest as compared to unfermented foods.
How to Forage
There are many edibles that we unknowingly ignore. You can buy a book which will help you get along and get to it. Like killing dandelions is killing bees and it is useful for us also.
Medicinal Use of Herb
Now that more people are getting aware of how important it is to go natural and avoid allopathic medicines. There are medicinal herbs that we can grow right in our kitchen. No need to buy them from expensive stores. Many herbs are grown in the wild on their own. They have tons of medicinal uses. You can also secrete their essential oil and increase their shelf life.
In a booming essential oil world, I encourage you to learn more about herbs. Those herbs you can grow right in your kitchen or on your back deck! You don’t need to depend on a company to make them. They can even be found in the wild. A lot of them have tons of medicinal purposes!!
Limit Your Wants
Now human wants are unlimited. The moment our one want is fulfilled second arises. This lifestyle habit makes us very difficult to be self-sustained as we can never get satisfied with what we have. We often end up collecting junk that we don’t even need. For example, we buy a particular product just because it’s on sale even though we don’t have any use of it and we end up stocking in a pile or a box. We must follow a minimalist approach and spend our hard-earned money on what we need.
Make a Reading Habit
Reading is such a powerful tool it helps our mind to reach horizons. Make sure you read posts, blogs, and books on how to be self-sufficient that will make your journey very easier and you will be motivated by watching their journey.
Learn to Sew
No one cares whether you sew by hand or machine, but it is very essential to learn how to sew clothes. It is a very underrated skill and becoming extinct day by day. You can mend clothes instead of buying new ones. After some practice, one can even prepare clothes for himself as well. It’s very cheaper than getting them stitched from a Boutique nearby.
Well everyone is good at something more than others. We should always be helpful and never hesitate to ask for help from someone. Achieving self-sufficiency cant be comprised in a set of pointers, but I have tried to list the most important ones. I hope this article proves helpful in achieving a self-sufficient lifestyle. Do share your real-life hacks which you use in your daily life to achieve self-sufficiency.