I recently heard the following during a conversation, “After you, everyone seems to have begun talking about simple living, and they’re making good money from their YouTube channels and Instagram accounts.”
Firstly, I’d like to thank those who see Ege and I as pioneers in simple living, however, there are a few ideas I’d like to share about this particular situation.
*I don’t think that anyone has a monopoly on simple living.
When I first began to become interested in the subject about 15 years ago, one of the first inspiring names was Leo Babauta, the founder of zenhabits. After that a lot of different voices imbued me with different perspectives, from Henry David Thoreau to Diogenes, Elain St. James to James Altucher. When I met Ege we discovered a mutual interest in simple living and decided to write about our shared experiences and what we’d learned. Even though Sade is the first book about simple living, written in Turkey, we obviously won’t say that we introduced the concept to the whole country! Whether it’s thanks to us or not, we’re solely very happy when people discover an interest in simple living.
*I believe that everyone is responsible for their own creations.
Let’s say that there are those who use simple living for commerce, instead of adopting it, and are actually emptying it of meaning. We don’t think about calling them out. Everyone is free to understand and express their understanding in whichever way they see fit. It seems much more beneficial to focus on doing good with our own beliefs, rather than trying to alter someone else according to our own understanding.
*I find it beneficial to detach oneself from the “if they’re doing it, so should you,” logic
Let’s say that they’ve adopted simple living and reached a larger audience due to various media channels. And like I said in the first sentence, “they’re making good money.” Why do we feel that this is an injustice? Deciding the medium is as much part of the process as the message itself. I don’t think it’s right to use something we don’t even feel an affinity for just because it’s presented to us as an opportunity. However, I don’t find it wrong when people do this as a personal preference and even end up making monetary gains.