A degrowth lifestyle is based on sobriety, sustainability (both ecological and social), calm and personal relations. It promotes conviviality, cooperation and altruism rather than individualism, competition and selfishness; playing for the sake of playing and enjoying our leisure time, rather than working frantically for the sake of doing more and more!
In a degrowth lifestyle, human beings have a different attitude towards each other and towards nature, based on harmony rather than exploitation; an attitude in which the frenzy of modern times gives way to slowness, contemplation and a full expression of feelings, which can only lead to greater serenity.
A degrowth lifestyle also gives more sense to our actions, as the idea of “doing in order to do more and more” is replaced by “doing well”, aiming at contemplation and improvement, leading us towards a better future.
It is equally important to re-establish a connection with the knowledge and know-how of the past, overcoming the assumption that the new is better and the old is outdated, while accepting and encouraging all the best aspects of modernity.
From an economic point of view, in order to facilitate and promote a degrowth lifestyle, it is essential to reduce the influence exerted by the market on human life, through the following steps:
- Encouraging the production of homemade and handmade goods and services (e.g. bread, yoghurt, vegetables; bike repairing, babysitting);
- Encouraging non-commercial exchange practices based on mutual gift-giving;
- Reducing commoditization;
- Devoting less time to work and more time to personal relations, home production of goods, and cultivation of “repressed” dimensions of life (social, political, cultural, artistic, spiritual, etc.).
If we all lived in a more sober way, we could work less and devote more time to ourselves, our lives and other people, and there would be more vacant jobs for the young unemployed!
We think degrowth can only start from here: wiping out the values of growth from our collective imagination, changing ourselves and our way of being, which cannot but influence other people and the whole world, triggering – hopefully – a virtuous circle in all other fields.
There is no universally valid recipe, but it’s up to each of us to create our own “tailored” lifestyle according to our individual way of being.
We are fully aware that not everybody has the time to produce homemade goods, or has the possibility to work less. We do believe however that we can always do something, even just by starting to look at the world with different eyes.
The main MDF projects concerning Lifestyles are:
– The Know-How University;
– The project “Health and Degrowth”.
You can find more information by following the links.