With the world of DIY, “do it yourself”, available at your fingertips, on TV, & on all the social media channels, there is nothing you cannot teach yourself to do. This is not a question of “can” you DIY, but rather getting to the root of “why” we should & the benefits of DIY that are available to us all.
This post may contain affiliate links at no additional cost to you. By making your purchases through the links on this website, IMSL may make a small percentage at no direct cost to you. IMSL only promotes products we use & truly believe in. Please refer to my Privacy & Disclosures for further information. IMSL thanks you for your support!
OUR DIY ROOTS
Being a self-proclaimed DIY’er for most of my life, doing it myself is nothing new to me. Having always have had a passion to teach myself new skills, including how to embroider at age 10, DIY became a part of my life without even knowing it was a thing.
At age 12, I took it upon myself to approach our landlord for purchasing paint and supplies needed to redo my bedroom myself & they agreed! A month later I had painted the walls off white & the wooden floors purple (my favorite color at the time), installed a corkboard wall, and redecorated my room (putting my mattress on the floor in the middle of the room), after all, it was the ’70’s 🙂 .
Being industrious was nothing new. Like being drawn to like, my partner in life is of the same mold, thank goodness. There is nothing that man cannot do and do well. So when it was mentioned almost 20 years ago that it might be a good idea to move to the country & create a small homestead so that our daughter would know where a carrot came from & what it took to create said carrot, and FYI, it’s NOT from a plastic bag or the farmer’s market, he didn’t blink an eye.
We wanted to get back to the roots of living a sustainable life, one that is mindful, authentic and thoughtful. In order to create a homestead & the life we envisioned, we needed to seek out those who had knowledge of the skills we needed. We asked questions, lots of questions, learned from mentors, researched online, & read everything we could get our hands on. Quickly realizing the depth of knowledge we lacked to create a sustainable homestead, and that we needed still learn a lot in order to successfully create this life became blatantly apparent.
Take carrots for example. Learning everything we needed to learn about how to grow an organic vegetable garden (yes, carrots were one of our first crops) was researched. From knowing the differences between seed choices, to preparing the garden beds for planting the carrots, learning the best way to thin carrots, & finally experimenting with the best ways to store the carrots long-term for fresh eating all needed to be learned. And that’s just for carrots!
The sense of joy & deep satisfaction in both the research of how-to and the actual DIY’ing how to grow, nurture and store carrots was incredibly rewarding. The beauty of DIY is that it’s available to ALL. All ages, genders, and skill sets have the ability to DIY anything no matter where you live, and not just growing carrots 🙂 .
The satisfaction one can receive from making your own “anything” is par none. Often asked, “why bother taking the time to create your own when you can just buy it?” got the wheels turning & a few questions came to mind. What are the reasons why more don’t make their own in today’s modern society? What is it that hold’s them back from trying? And, why exactly do we enjoy making our own “anything” here on the hill?
WHY SOME DON’T DIY
For generations, knowledge of old-fashioned skills have been lost, especially when it comes to the homefront. Interestingly, according to an article, “Why Millenials Don’t DIY”, the following statistics were quoted:
43% of millenials can’t wire a plug
More than 12% say they can’t change a lightbulb
32% don’t know how to bleed a radiator– The Big Issue
These are, for the most part, the easiest & most routine tasks in maintaining a household, and I believe not just directed toward millennials. So what are some of the reason’s why more don’t DIY? Here are a few:
- Impatience – Wanting instant gratification
- Lack of Skill – Lacking the knowledge of how to complete a specific task/project
- Lack of Self-Confidence – It takes courage to attempt DIY and be willing to fail
- DIFM Mindset – Standing for “do it for me”, many prefer paying someone to complete tasks/projects. Honestly, it should be TLTDIM = “too lazy to do it myself” 🙂 , just sayin’
- Time – Claiming a lack of time to invest in DIY
In a world filled with technology that is ever-changing, growing, & expanding at phenomenal rates, children on iPhones, tablets, and computers at ages where they are still able to ride in the grocery cart seats, families sitting in restaurants together yet not together all absorbed in their electronic device(s), we have reached the point of disconnection through our “connections”. Instead of slowing life down with technologies “conveniences”, the opposite seems to have incurred. Life is often spiraling out of control with its fast pace.
Don’t get me wrong, as I sit here on my computer writing this post and heavily absorbed in social media for the blog, there are times when a good self-check is needed. Time to move the body, or balance out “screen time” with time elbows deep time in the garden or a visit to my creative room.
There is a reason that people are drawn to the “farmhouse style” created and largely promoted by Joanna Gains, or the minimalist lifestyle, or even the KonMari approach to living. People are seeking simplicity in their lives. A way to slow down, disconnect from the electronic world & reconnect to themselves, those around them, and even the earth.
Many are feeling the need to take control back. Control of where their time is spent and the type of quality that time consists of. There seems to be a “maker movement” according to an article, “The Joy of DIY”. The simple joy of “making” something, regardless of the outcome, has energized many to give DIY a try.
Making stuff with your hands is joyful, especially if you detach from the outcome.The Joy of DIY
BENEFITS OF DIY
Making your own “anything” does take the investment of time & effort. When we began the journey of creating our homestead, lost skills had to be learned. Vintage skills that had been generationally lost in our family, needed to be re-visited. These skills included much more than just gardening.
The more DIY projects we completed the more we wanted to tackle. Not just how to grow carrots but learning how to grow our own food (both vegetable & meat) & how to prepare & preserve those items. Transforming, repurposing, & giving life to vintage items became a “fun time” for the whole family. Warning! The art of creating something from nothing with “our own two hands” can become a lifestyle.
The benefits of DIY’ing go far beyond the deep satisfaction received from the accomplishments. DIY is GOOD for us on so many levels! How? Here are a few examples:
- SAVES $$$ – Learning new skills whether how to fix a leak in the faucet (plumbers average hourly wage ranges from $45 to $200), how to sew or mend damaged items (avg. $12 to $15 per hour), how to make your own meals from scratch (avg. yearly cost $3,008 for dining out expenses), or how to repurpose items, all will save you money & keep those dollars in your pocket.
- EXERCISING THE BRAIN – We’ve all heard the adage “use it or lose it”. This applies the brain as well. Stimulating the creative & cognitive aspects of brain activity through “DIY Therapy” works our brain as a muscle. allowing us to “reclaim our psychological and spiritual wellbeing”.
- DIY GOOD FOR THE BODY – Let’s face it, to complete most DIY projects you need to be active both physically & mentally. Take gardening for example. Gardening or landscaping works to strengthen our muscles, our cardiovascular systems, reduces stress, and creates happiness!
- IMPROVES MENTAL HEALTH – A Stanford study found ” quantifiable evidence that walking in nature could lead to a lower risk of depression”. With half the worlds population living in urban settings, the disconnect with nature through urbanization has grown dramatically and right along with that is the rate of “mental disorders and depression”. Many DIY projects take you to the out of doors, oftentimes into nature itself. For example, wild-crafting herbs & flowers to DIY oils & tinctures, or picking wild berries to DIY home remedies, or simply playing outside will put you back in touch with Nature.
- RECONNECTING – Something as simple as making your own food from scratch and sitting down as a family to eat can have a positive impact on family life. The importance of family dinner time, having all disconnect from electronics is proven to improve familial relationships, & reduce risks of drug and alcohol abuse among the younger generation.
- FOSTERS PRIDE & SATISFACTION – Consider how you felt when you created “anything” with your own two hands. “When you make something you feel productive, but the engagement and exploration involved in the doing can move your mind and elevate your mood”. Creating “anything” yourself creates and “fosters pride and satisfaction”.
- POSSIBLE EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES – Learning new skills and perfecting them often lead to job opportunities & opening new businesses. Whether creating opportunities for the handyman or making your own organic products 🙂 , the opportunities are endless for how you can actually make money from your DIY.
- INCREASES APPRECIATION – Once you have learned the skills needed to complete a project, the level of appreciation for what went into the making of that product increases.
- INCREASES SELF-CONFIDENCE – When have you ever heard someone say they didn’t benefit from learning a new skill set? A wonderful quote from Creativity, Happiness and Your Own Two Hands: “If we can treasure doing as much as having done we provide new avenues for success, self-esteem or self-repair”, says it all.
- INCREASES SELF-RELIANCE – The more you can do on your own, the less you rely on others!
- BETTER END RESULT – Often times the end products quality far exceeds that of anything that you can purchase!
- IT’S FUN!! – It’s been said before and will be said again, DIY projects are fun to do!
Hopefully, if you haven’t already, you will begin to incorporate more DIY into your life. From simple things like hanging clothes on a line to dry by the power of the sun, to taking it a step further and upcycling jeans to create a unique clothespin holder, the benefits of DIY will far outway any negatives.
What ways do you incorporate DIY into your life? Let’s get the conversation going by joining in the comments below! Be sure to subscribe to stay up-to-date with all the “happenings on the hill”!
Love, Light, & Laughter ~