10 Key Elements Of A Naturally Sustainable Lifestyle

How my interest in a sustainable lifestyle came about

One of my life long interests has been Self Sufficiency and I can remember in my late teens attending a series of talks and workshops being held on the subject, locally to where I then lived (in the U.K.).

It was in the mid 1970’s and Self Sufficiency was definitely in vogue, especially within the “hippie” culture that had been sweeping across from the U.S.

The era of open air music festivals was in full flow and the topic of conversation in the fields was often relating to the many Communes that were being established by groups of like minded souls from all around the world.

There was a definite sense of anti-establishment in the air back then and the idea of living in completely self sustainable communities where everyone helped one another, returning to natural values like “living off the land” and not being part of the tedium of the post-war industrialism that society expected us as teenagers to conform to, was very attractive.

I never actually attended a commune, so for me it was more of an ideal to dream about, but
I do remember subscribing to the “Practical Self Sufficiency” magazine that was being published as a bi-monthly periodical.

It was a great read, with loads of useful and interesting articles about setting up and living on a smallholding.

And then there was the classic BBC comedy sit-com “The Good Life” starring Richard Briars, Felicity Kendal, Penelope Keith and Paul Eddington in the story of Tom and Barbara Good converting their urban garden into a smallholding and living a totally self-sufficient life (or so they thought!!). A really great laugh, however it had an unexpected downside in that it was ridiculing the self-sufficiency movement and the Practical Self-Sufficiency magazine found it’s numbers falling so the magazine ended up being renamed “Home Farm” in an attempt to recover it’s readership.

Anyway, where is all this leading?

Well my dream of living a self-sufficient, or more accurately a self-sustainable lifestyle has never left me, despite the wide and varied career paths that I have take since leaving school all those years ago.

So what I would like to do over the coming months is to do a series of articles based on this very subject.

What I hope to achieve is to provide you with some useful and practical advice on becoming self-sufficient yourself, and also to stimulate more interest in living in a sustainable way despite all the consumerism that our modern society has thrust upon us.

Where possible, I hope to utilise advances in technology rather than just turn our backs to it.

In this way, I aim to uncover a way forward that is not only sustainable, but is also a healthier, more rewarding and happier life style for all of us.


To start the series, I would like to take a look at what I consider to be 10 key elements of a naturally sustainable living. These being (in no particular order):

1. Home generated natural power sources.
2. Complete diet based on home grown food.
3. Clothing and utensils made from natural and renewable locally sourced materials.
4. Education based on and around the advancement of sustainable living.
5. Buildings made to energy efficient designs and from natural locally sourced materials.
6. Communities contributing to self sustainable lifestyle, farming, trade, etc.
7. Transport based on natural and sustainable power sources.
8. Community entertainment.
9. Community support infrastructure.
10. Locations where all this can flourish.

To see all the posts in this series, go to my Sustainable Lifestyle blog.

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