3 Psychological Benefits of Homesteading and Self-Sufficient Living

In a world that is ever more technologically driven, and where it seems like every home may have its own inbuilt artificial intelligence mechanisms and virtual reality systems before too long, the practices of homesteading and self-sufficient living are enjoying an unexpected renaissance among some circles.


These days, a surprising number of people of all ages are more likely to spend their free time looking up sump pump prices, seeds, and woodworking tools, than the latest high-tech gadgets and games.


In fact, elements of this movement have even reached into the heart of the world of computer science, with computer science professor Cal Newport having recently released a hit book entitled “Digital Minimalism.”


But what are the psychological benefits of getting into homesteading and self-sufficient living, growing some of your own food, and maybe having a well dug on your property?



Here are a few.



  • The sense of integrity that comes from living in line with your values



Lots and lots of people these days are expressing an increasing concern with issues of environmentalism, over-consumption, and a lack of deep and slow-paced pastimes in their lives.


But it’s one thing to complain about stuff, and to have certain proclaimed values and views, and it’s quite another thing to actually do the best you can to live in line with those values and views.


If you’re the kind of person who takes the idea of self-sufficiency seriously, and is concerned about their impact on the environment, getting into homesteading and related practices really helps you to put your money where your mouth is. This, then, generates an increasing sense of self respect and integrity.



  • Increased confidence due to less reliance on external forces



These days, it’s highly unlikely that anyone is going to be able to live in a way that makes them completely independent, and which removes the need to rely – at least to some degree – on external forces and systems.


There are probably still a few places where you could retreat into the woods and build yourself a cabin, but that’s not likely to be a fulfilling life for many of us.


All the same, by getting involved in homesteading and self-sufficient living practices, you do significantly reduce the degree to which you rely on external forces. There’s a certain increase in confidence that comes with knowing that you can keep the lights on, and maintain access to fresh water, even if the electricity grid fails and the water company turns off the taps.



  • An improved sense of well-being due to time spent nurturing and growing things



As we all know, breaking things is often easy, and can be done in a heartbeat. But actually growing and nurturing things takes an awful lot of work, and an awful lot of time.


And yet, there’s something about nurturing and creating things that is fundamental to human well-being.

When you see the seeds you planted bearing fruit (or vegetables), and when you can step back from your DIY projects and look with satisfaction on the end product, it’s likely that you will feel a deep sense of contentment and accomplishment that you just don’t experience when spending all your free time watching TV.