Last year, I wrote about my attempts to disentangle myself from capitalism and listed a few things I found helpful. It’s an ongoing project, and I have more tips to share. As I stated in my previous blog post, I am coming at this from a position of privilege. I have no mortgage, no debts, and I am happy to live a fairly minimalist lifestyle, so I understand some of my suggestions won’t be accessible to everyone. But I hope anyone interested will find something useful.
- Say no to diet culture. I wish I could express how insidious I find perpetual weight loss ‘programs’. I’ve tried many over the years and have always ended up right back where I started – unhappy with myself and my body. Let’s face it. If any of this stuff actually worked, we’d all be as thin and happy as we want to be. The fact that WW is now offering Ozempic is, in my opinion, a tactical admission that calorie restriction does not and can not work long term.
- Go grey. Of all the things I’ve done since the beginning of the pandemic, growing out my grey hair has been my favourite. No more trips to the hairdressers for root touch ups, no more box dyes, and no more trying to fool anyone into thinking my hair is naturally brown. I’m in my mid-fifties. I have grey hair. This is how I’m supposed to look.
- Grow some food. I was hesitant to add this to my list because gardening, like many hobbies, can cost money. But it’s not expensive to grow a few herbs on your kitchen windowsill or a bag of potatoes on your balcony. I’m not advocating full food self-sufficiency. That’s a gargantuan task. But don’t underestimate the empowerment of enjoying food you’ve grown yourself. There really is nothing like it. (If you’re interested in inexpensive gardening, please check out Simon Akeroyd’s TikTok and his other resources. He can teach you how to grow food from kitchen scraps.)
- Slow down. This was difficult for me. I come from along line of rush-arounders, no doubt heavily influenced by capitalism’s constant, loud push for us to get as much done in a day as possible. If it’s work, we’re expected to produce. If we have time off, we have to get stuff done so that we can go back to to work and be productive without our basic human needs distracting us. Don’t let capitalism guilt you into thinking about work all the time. Everyone deserves rest.
- Know your worth. If you’ve never paid attention to anything I’ve ever said, that’s fine – please pay attention to this: you are valuable as a human being simply because you exist. No amount of money, job success, education, personal possessions, or social connection changes that. Don’t allow capitalism to convince you that you need money and status. You don’t, and you have every right to a happy and fulfilled life without contributing to a corrupt system that doesn’t care about you.
Again, I know these tips won’t work for everyone, but I do hope there is something helpful here. I’ve been pulling away from capitalism for the last few years and can honestly say that I’m happier for it.