XVIII – DIY

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“Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life’s coming attractions.” Albert Einstein

“The man who has no imagination has no wings.” Muhamad Ali

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells.” Dr. Seuss

 

DIY stands for ‘Do It Yourself’ and ever since moving to Australia I have been engaging more in this prescription rather than buying or hiring someone to do the work. My main drive came from a will to confirm my suspicions that I could do it more than trying to save a buck – though the financial stimulus did play a part since specialised labour is bloody expensive.

With my own two hands (and the help of mates) I have built a fire oven (the project I’m most proud of); reconstructed the rotting structure of my wooden deck; built two bedroom shelving units; installed fly-nets; windows; and many various projects around the house. It’s a great feeling to successfully act as a plumber, carpenter, gardener, concreter and brick worker. I had a go around the house at pretty much all the relevant disciplines, except electrical – better hire for this.

 

Today, I do want to save a buck more than prove myself anything. But independently of my main motivation, when I decide to engage in projects I have had no previous experience in, I get outside my comfort zone. Getting out of my comfort zone is good because I face my fears and uncertainties, and also get to learn something new – I get to grow.

This blog is a good example, your comments an even better one (get the hint?).

 

With my choice of pursuing a minimalist lifestyle, I expect to face ever new challenges and have fewer resources to tackle them with. The way I see it, I will have to cultivate my imagination and become more creative.

I play futsal once a week and on the first game (of one of the many tournament-seasons we have every year), I spent the entire game sliding. Apparently it wasn’t the floor that was slippery, it was my footwear.

Before embracing my new lifestyle, my first and only course of action would’ve been to show up on the next game with a new pair of shoes. But I have decided to be a more deliberate consumer, so since the shoes were in good condition I opted for considering other options.

Before the following game I placed adhesive tape on the soles of the shoes and removed it only before the game started – it worked, I didn’t slip once and we won as well. I guess I’ll keep using those shoes until they fall apart from so much goal scoring.

This is purely an example on how we’ve been working towards being more autonomous… on “DIYing” it. When there is the ‘need’ for something, going to the shops is no longer the first and only course of action. Our imagination and creativity is applied to answer this question: “What resources do we have, that can help us achieve the desired outcome?”

Some of the options discussed are hilarious and take us back to childhood where the best way to change the car’s tyre is by lifting it using hot-air balloons.

This frame of mind helps our budget immensely, but above that, it engages all family members and exercises our brains in inspiring ways. The input from our 3 year-old is incomparable.

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