The Popular Podcast #145: Simple Living (Voluntary Simplicity)

How far are we willing to go for a simple life? Will Jessica & Kelly be alcoholic cave dwellers by this time next year? Find out in this episode of The Popular Podcast: Lifefucking Simple Living.

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Requests from my contracting job are sporadic, and sometimes I don’t hear anything from them for weeks. Jessica and I finally squared up the day before Jessica left for Europe, and I had even less money than I thought I did. It depressed me.

Then I started asking myself, “What am I depressed about?” I noticed that when I would feel the waves of depression about not having money, it would be when I would think about buying something and then realize I didn’t have the money to do so. Buy some shit on Craigslist. Go out for dinner. Buy this, Buy that.

There is one obvious solution to this problem: find more work. But the thought of finding more work made me more sick than not having any money. I would rather be poor than work. Well, work for anyone else.

So I got to work thinking about ways to reduce the amount of money I spend, so I can work less hours. Calculating how much my expenses are and figuring out where to cut corners. I made some cloth napkins.

I have also decided I can probably forgo the $20/week Red Bull habit. Other than that, I’m not sure how much we can really save at the grocery store. Maybe buy things only when they are on sale, or waste time looking for coupons, but this is not really what I am getting at. To me, simple living is more than a mere money saving tactic. More than “using smaller portions of shampoo” (cbsnews)

What is more interesting to me than spending less is the concept of Voluntary Simplicity. Making every decision a conscious one, and no longer surrounding ourselves with things we don’t need.

We all have stress about making enough money to support ourselves. But when I was thinking about the stress that I have from not having work in comparison to the stress a lot of my peers express from having to work in an office 9-5 M-F, I realized I would prefer mine. At least in my version, I get to hang out with cats all day.

One of our first about pages for The Popular Podcast indicated that the mission of TPP was to obtain fame and fortune. We have had a few iterations since, but not straying to far from the original goal of reach and wealth. Simple living, as a concept, is not necessarily a contradiction of that. Its not that we are changing our goals of finding fame and fortune, its just that our definitions of it are changing. The fortune is measured by a different currency.

What we are realizing is that we potentially can make enough money from our online endeavors to sustain us- we just may have to make our lifestyles more sustainable. This is a design project just like any other. We have finally taken the important first step of admitting we need to change our behavior. The next step is figuring out how to follow through.

I have been trying to come up with some possible exercises in simple living that I could attempt for podcast content and could also potentially lead to incremental changes in my lifestyle. I’ve thought of not buying anything I don’t need for a month, not eating out for a month, perhaps something like wearing the same outfit everyday, but none of these seem interesting or valuable enough. I need your help to come up with something. Please, leave your suggestions in the comments!

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TPP FOREPLAY

Jessica was too obsessed with her lipgloss

This is a preroll from when we were going to record this episode on Tuesday morning. We didn’t end up recording that day, because we realized that we weren’t yet prepared enough. This part of our continuing efforts to make better content. That and we had just done something that put us in a weird state of mind. We don’t think we are going to do much of that in the early morning anymore.


Getting Happy at 6:00am? | 00:04:43


TPP POST COITAL

Finances and Lifestreaming

There is one single topic that Jessica cannot currently discuss in the public stream. Find out what it is and why in this TPP POST-COITAL. (HINT: Its her finances)


Will she ever fess up?? | 00:04:47


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TPP FOREPLAY

Jessica was too obsessed with her lipgloss

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TPP POST COITAL

Finances and Lifestreaming

[qt:/filez/video/tpp_145postroll-iPhone.m4v /filez/video/clicktoplay_postroll.jpg 480 360]