Communicate Like the Pioneers – Pioneer Life in the 21st Century, Part 8

By Ebony Porter, August 17, 2017, Charity & Community, Events & Fun, Family

Pioneer times were tough, and we would never suggest life without modern plumbing, refrigeration, or electricity! But with the fast pace of modern life, some folks have decided to learn skills from bygone eras. This includes purchasing local products made closer to home with more care and quality materials, unhooking from technology, and embracing homesteading. In our Pioneer Life in the 21st Century series, we’ll help you embrace a few pioneer-like actions, create mindful moments, and perhaps save a few bucks, whether you live in an apartment in the city or a planned community in the suburbs.

Communicate Like the Pioneers - Pioneer Life in the 21st Century, Part 8 | Bounce Energy Blog

In a day and age where contracts are signed electronically, and letter writing comes via an illuminated screen, the romantic old notion of letter writing has become a thing of the past.

Avid lovers of “snail mail” still hold dear their desire to place a stamp on a letter or postcard and send it across the world, but for most of the population, communicating with our smart phones, through social media, and by email is how we connect and converse.

Let’s turn back the dial and communicate like the pioneers.

Imagine needing to talk to someone without using the internet, or truly meeting those who live around you. What about reconnecting face to face, and learning each other’s stories on a deeper level than just their social media photos and a two-line description?

Not only will this be a fun, slow, simplified exercise for you, but it will bring so much joy to the person on the receiving end, to hold a letter in their hands, and read your thoughts and words.

I have a box full of hand-written letters to treasure for a lifetime. They’re mostly from my Grandparents who have long passed on, but it’s a nice reminder to read them and remember how simple life was for them.

Follow along as we share ways to communicate, like the pioneers did!

Communicate Like the Pioneers - Pioneer Life in the 21st Century, Part 8 | Bounce Energy Blog

Get Some Stamps

As a life long philatelist, that is, a person who collects and adores stamps, I always have good looking  stamps on hand. If I can send a letter with lets say, a Georgia O’Keeffe painting up in the corner, then why not?

Next time you are at the post office, or shopping on the USPS website, check out what the latest stamps look like and grab a sheet or two. They often have a range of artwork, moments from history, persons of importance, or celebratory images, that will speak to you and your identity. Make your letter sending fun!

Old Fashioned Stationery

We are going to write a letter, by hand! Pick up some nice stationery and envelopes that match. There are thousands of designs out there on websites such as Paperless Post and Tiny Prints, to name a few, that will personalize your stationary, too. From various patterns to unique fonts and colors that speak your style, order some stationery that looks like you.

Writing Those Letters

Who will be the lucky recipient?

A good suggestion if you don’t know where to start might be a younger niece or nephew, someone that’s at an age that has never stepped foot into a real record store for example, is obsessed with online media, and has unlikely received a hand written note in the mail!

Another suggestion might be an elderly relative that is in a nursing home, or someone you haven’t seen in years that you went to school with a long time ago and haven’t spoken to to catch them up on your life.

Use this opportunity for yourself to set aside 15 minutes in a quite space, or maybe with some good tunes on. It could become a weekly ritual that gets you away from electronic media and into an old fashioned space of writing down your thoughts to a loved one. It may sound cheesy right now, or something you “don’t have time for,” but I am betting it will be something you’ll feel good about, and who knows, maybe start a trend with!

Pop one of those beautiful stamps on the top right corner, and walk it down to your local post box.

Communicate Like the Pioneers - Pioneer Life in the 21st Century, Part 8 | Bounce Energy Blog

Meeting Neighbors

You may have had the odd wave here and there with your neighbors, but do you really know them? If you do, then that’s wonderful. If you don’t, why not invite them over for a cup of tea one afternoon?

Get to know them, and talk face to face. More times than not, we need the support of our neighbors and larger community in many aspects of life.

It helps to have someone watching out for you, or to help take care of an animal when you leave town. Don’t hide behind social media or your comings and goings without having a good conversation with those who live around you. You might find you have more in common than you knew.

Another suggestion on building connection and community is that if you know your neighbor is growing their family, then why not bring them a home cooked meal once the baby is delivered? Nothing says “support” more than a dinner when you’re tackling the challenges of having a newborn at home.

Face to Face

Social media has in many ways, sadly, replaced in-person interactions with friends. But social media is one dimensional, and folks rarely share what they are going through on a deeper level in this portal.

Stop life, and make time for those you love. In the pioneer days, we can guess that every afternoon was likely spent recharging over a hot cup of tea or coffee with neighbors or family members.

Connect with friends over a coffee at the local coffee shop, or instead of texting, call your friend. So much more can take place over the phone in a 5 minute conversation than can be said via text messaging, which can often lead to convoluted interpretations as to what a person may have really meant.

It all seems so simple, but life is busy and we don’t make it a priority to connect. Put down the phone, and talk face to face. Make a memory. You’ll be glad you did!

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About 

Born in Australia, Ebony has been in Texas long enough to consider herself a Texan-Aussie. Ebony has been writing for magazines, newspapers, and blogs, for more than 10 years. When she's not writing she's building quilts, growing her own food, or camping with her family somewhere far from the sounds of the city.

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