Defiance is a funny word. In children, we try to discourage it. In employees, it can lead to disastrous outcomes.
But throughout history, those who are defiant in a positive way – who stand against injustice, who stay true to their own inner voice despite all of the external noise and who resist compliance to follow a higher calling – have changed the world for the better, time and again.
In today’s world, defiance looks different. We live in a relatively peaceful, affluent time and certainly in Australia, we don’t suffer under an oppressive government or a cultural system which forces us into choices we wouldn’t make for ourselves. We do, however, run the risk of becoming numbed by that very peaceful, affluent lifestyle into accepting situations which actually go against the grain for us as the ‘status quo’, and becoming compliant by staying silent.
Maybe now, more than ever, defiance is what we need. Sure, as a concept, it mightn’t look the same as it used to, but defiance remains the same powerful force for good that it has always been, if enough people are bold enough to act on it!
Our Favourite Small Acts of Defiance:
Buy the best quality clothes you can afford (and buy only what you need).
Most of us have long been sucked into the funnel of buying items of clothing we truly do not need. The ‘Instagram effect’ has created a feeling that to be seen – especially in your feed – in the same outfit twice is not to be living your best life. After all, would a Kardashian do that? However, clothing waste contributes tonnes to landfill every year, is very slow to break down, and is almost entirely unnecessary. Charities are overwhelmed to breaking point with the amount of donations – mostly unusable – that they receive daily. Sweatshops in third world countries operate under appalling conditions to feed our need for $10 tops. It’s time to think fully about every item of clothing you buy, and concentrate on replacing staples with ethically made, high quality, long-wearing items once they become unwearable. Add a few key ‘on season’ heart-stirring pieces every few months and be creative with swapping, borrowing and revamping the clothes you have!
Repair don’t Replace
In our highly commercial, materialistic society, we’re compelled to throw items such as electronic goods, shoes and furniture away the minute something goes wrong with it. Cheap prices from offshore manufacturing support this, and it’s literally easier – and often less expensive – to replace an item than to repair it. However, this has created a ‘throwaway culture’ in which items which could easily be repaired – a pair of boots with worn down heels, a toaster which only browns one side of your sourdough – are dumped. Be defiant. Choose to repair what you have, where at all possible, and keep these items from landfill.
Be Strangely Kind
It’s sad to think that kindness is now considered a subversive act, and there are definitely communities which are the exception, but for many living isolated lives shuttling between home and work each day, true kindness is rare. Our founder, Sharon, shared a story on this with us regarding a neighbour of hers, who was painfully shy but who she eventually befriended, after many attempts at opening a conversation.
We’re not talking about being kind to your children, or your sister. We’re talking about randomly paying for someone else’s coffee in a queue when they can’t find their purse. We’re talking about jiggling a pram for someone at the hair salon when their baby begins crying while they’re being shampooed. We’re talking making a double batch of soup next time you’re cooking some and take a pot to your neighbour who’s a single mum. Be strangely kind, and watch it come flooding back to you.
Take Imperfect but Inspired Action
We’re often made to feel that everyone else has it together WAY more than us, and that anything we do needs to be literally perfect to live up to this high standard. Don’t fall into this trap. Be defiant, by taking imperfect but inspired action towards your goals. We have long embraced this philosophy but only recently began describing it this way after listening to a podcast titled ‘The Manifesting Mum’, in which manifestation coach Gemma Benad describes how she shook off the paralysis which prevented her starting the podcast series. If you have a dream, start working towards it and don’t worry if every action you take is not perfect. It doesn’t need to be. Begin now, work with passion and inspiration, and don’t sweat if a few things are a little wonky. You’re on your way!
Enjoy Blissful Tech Free Days
This is so hard. We know. But it’s the ultimate small act of defiance in our ridiculously over-connected, switched on world.
To find a way to not touch your phone, to watch not one minute of television, to detach from social media completely can feel like undergoing a detox, and we know from personal experience it can be brutal.
But it’s a reward for your senses and your adrenal glands which you literally can’t replace. The easiest way to do so is to text anyone who needs to know beforehand that you’ll be incommunicado that day, turn your phone off and place it in a drawer. Then, make plans to be in nature – at the beach, on a hike – during the day, and to connect with friends during the evening. Before you know it, you’ll be heading to bed with a curiously clear head! Enjoy.