So this blog post feels a little bit like a cop out. At least it does for me. I had content that I actually wanted to blog about and believe me it is coming, but I feel like this post is really important to get out of the way before we go any further.
This blog is actually pretty old. Like, I made it 5 or so years ago, old. And if you scour the meager archives, you’ll see how few posts I made during the first few years of my blog. And there are a lot of reasons for that: I had severe Generalized Anxiety Disorder and I wasn’t dealing with it, I went through a very tough break up in the midst of the beginning stages of my therapy, and truthfully, I wasn’t nearly as motivated to see my blog succeed as I am now.
Getting my Anxiety settled and shifting my blog focus helped tremendously with that. The truth is: I’m not an influencer. Yet, when I started my blog, that’s what I thought I wanted. But, I don’t like the pressure of always being “on”, I’m not super social and I HATE taking pictures of myself (which is a self image issue I know I have to work through). I thought I wanted to be someone who got exclusive invites to soft openings of businesses so I could share the juicy details with other locals, but I quickly learned A. How much work goes into getting to that point and B. How much I prefer doing things a little more on my own terms, at my own pace and would rather not be the “blogger that breaks news”.
The truth of the matter is, I love local businesses and I love developing a connection with every maker and business owner I meet. I like learning how they got started and where they want to take their business next. The local scene is filled with passionate people that want to disrupt the “big box” industry by developing a better product/business model or developing a better product/business model at a more budget friendly price point. It was all the makers that I connected with that inspired me to create this blog in the first place so when I decided that I was going to get serious about my blog, I wondered why my blog wasn’t about them all along.
I want to live a completely local lifestyle and that sounds like a radical mission, but I found that when I was really serious about my blog, I was already doing it anyway. I recognize that there are some cases when it’s not always possible to shop completely local, but the ultimate goal at the end of the day is to be a more conscious consumer: What am I putting in my body? What am I putting on my body? Is there a reason for buying this product or has blind consumerism struck again?
We as a society are in a minimalist fad; We love Marie Kondo and her idea of keeping only that which sparks joy. And while I’m not 100% onboard with this philosophy, there is a very important point that I took away from this concept. In Marie Kondo’s show, “Tidying Up” on Netflix, she makes the family she is working with participate in a ritual where the family is meant to thank their home for all the memories and protection it has provided. And if we are meant to honor our home in such a way, why shouldn’t we implement that same concept when we are making a purchase whether it be something as small as a bar of soap or a piece of furniture? There should be a level of conscious choice when making a purchase. We do it with big purchases, but the small things are often overlooked, but it’s the small purchases that build up the quickest.
It was all of these thoughts swirling around in my head, and my ultimate desire to this full time, that lead me to the conclusion that it was time to shift my blog focus to blogging about and lifting up local—primarily KC local, but there will hopefully be some other local feature from my travels—businesses, how I incorporate their products into my daily life, or how I look for local businesses to fulfill a need or want in my life. The fact of the matter is, Kansas City’s local-ecosystem is strong enough to where it is totally possible to stop buying things from companies that pump our products full of things that we know are bad for us, but we still keep buying it and we can’t always pinpoint why. It’s time to get back to basics, shop small and support local businesses.
Have you ever felt similarly when you’re at Wal-Mart or perusing Amazon? Do you have a favorite local business that inspired you to stop buying a product from big box stores? Do you want shift away from buying big box brands and shop small? Tell me everything.