Author Topic: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders  (Read 1357 times)

erp

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The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« on: October 24, 2023, 09:10:24 AM »
I picked this up thinking that it was going to be a pretty standard minimalist/mustachian standard. You know the type - something that has some relatively ordinary advice but comes out with a kind of heart warming story by the end. I like to pick those up from time to time and see if there's a random nugget of information that I can fit into my worldview.

Whatever I was expecting,  I didn't get. This book ended up much more emotionally nuanced than I expected - it dealt heavily with substance abuse, feelings of self worth, navigating a complicated and exhausting world. And then she deftly tied it all back to how those experiences were informing her buying habits, and the steps she took to become a more deliberate/mindful consumer. The whole thing resonated really strongly with me, and I'm not sure if it's the charm or the empathy or just a smooth writing style.

Unlike a lot of the books which have shown up on this forum (invisible women, meritocracy trap), I don't think this will radically alter my worldview. I probably started out having tied up a lot of the loose ends which she's describing already (and certainly, it shone a light at some pieces of my life which I'll need to take a closer look at). If you're looking at an emotional, compassionate entry point to mustachianism, I think this might be one of the better ones I've read.

Anyone else read this? Any particular insights?

Morning Glory

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2023, 09:23:39 AM »
I used to read her blog but didn't realize she had a book out. I'll check to see if my library has it. Thanks for mentioning!

erp

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2023, 11:18:18 AM »
I looked for her blog and couldn't find it - do  you know if it got taken down?

Morning Glory

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2023, 01:38:13 PM »
I looked for her blog and couldn't find it - do  you know if it got taken down?

I can't find it either. That must be why I stopped reading it.

englishteacheralex

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2023, 02:14:52 PM »
I liked this book. Her blog has morphed into a newsletter and I think to get the best content you have to pay.

erp

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2023, 03:26:17 PM »
I liked this book. Her blog has morphed into a newsletter and I think to get the best content you have to pay.

Honestly - her writing was pretty good. I wouldn't feel particularly bad about paying for content like that if it made sense. Realistically, I'd probably just hold off and buy her next book, but paying for content isn't bad, per se.

englishteacheralex

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2023, 04:01:26 PM »
I think it's totally justifiable for her to be paid for her content, I just was providing the information that you do have to pay for her newsletter now by subscribing to a larger network of newsletters...I think. Something like that. I didn't pay.

erp

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2023, 09:47:41 AM »
I think I came out swinging a bit harder than I meant to after re-reading my last comment. I was mostly trying to say "it's okay to pay for things that add value to our lives, especially when those things are instrumental to our success".

I notice a pretty strong trend on these forums to be suspicious of paywalls and restrictions on media, and to default to free material instead. I don't think that's bad, per se ... but I think that it's super reasonable for a content creator to want to profit from their work. If I like their work and get good value for it, then I tend to encourage people to pay for it.

Of course, I did get this particular book from the library. I like libraries too - I just want to see authours/content creators/experts rewarded for their work in a way that makes intuitive sense for me and aligns their incentives with mine. Someone who gets paid when I buy there book is incentivized to write great books (or a lot of books). Someone who gets paid by an advertiser when I read their article isn't necessarily as strongly incentivized to write a great article.

Mostly, I think that at some point we become rich enough that we can make financial decisions like 'whether to pay for content' based on how we'd like the world to be organized, rather than what's cheapest. Encouraging someone to pay for her newsletter was very much a vote for examining the world through that lens.

Don't get me wrong, still be frugal. We're mustachians, after all. But live in ways which are consistent with the world you'd like to live in.

Adventine

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2023, 10:07:59 AM »
I just borrowed the e-book from my local library. It sounds like a good read for this season of my life.

Morning Glory

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #9 on: November 02, 2023, 11:41:32 AM »


I notice a pretty strong trend on these forums to be suspicious of paywalls and restrictions on media, and to default to free material instead. I don't think that's bad, per se ... but I think that it's super reasonable for a content creator to want to profit from their work. If I like their work and get good value for it, then I tend to encourage people to pay for it.


How old are you?

Just asking because a lot of us are gen-x or "old millennial" and got used to things being free on the internet, including good quality news (remember when Yahoo hired all those real journalists but couldn't get their algorithm straight so the serious stuff was all hidden behind celebrity junk?) and streaming TV services (Hulu was free for the first 2-3 years and had hardly any ads the first year).  The paywalls started gradually but now it really feels like everything is siloed off or has the equivalent of a tip jar.  Yes I know they are businesses not charity and I'm not saying people shouldn't be paid for their work or even that it's unfair for you to call us spoiled brats but it might help to have some context.   

erp

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #10 on: November 02, 2023, 12:04:53 PM »


...


How old are you?

Just asking because a lot of us are gen-x or "old millennial" and got used to things being free on the internet, including good quality news (remember when Yahoo hired all those real journalists but couldn't get their algorithm straight so the serious stuff was all hidden behind celebrity junk?) and streaming TV services (Hulu was free for the first 2-3 years and had hardly any ads the first year).  The paywalls started gradually but now it really feels like everything is siloed off or has the equivalent of a tip jar.  Yes I know they are businesses not charity and I'm not saying people shouldn't be paid for their work or even that it's unfair for you to call us spoiled brats but it might help to have some context.

Ha! This is a good question. I'm an old millennial myself, and remember the heady days of "information wants to be free".
I absolutely got used to high quality things being free on the internet - the reason that I'm now a more vocal advocate for paying for shit is twofold: I'm richer than I was a decade or two ago, and it seems pretty clear to me that the free things I can get on the internet now aren't the same quality that I once took for granted.

I'd be very happy if the 2005 era internet hypothesis was correct and the best information would just generate the most money, incentivizing people to make really high quality investigations/reports/blogs/etc. My concern is that a mountain of bullshit is actually a lot easier to make, and it drowns out the quality stuff. In the face of evidence (a decline in available, free, high quality analysis; a massive quantity of bullshit; a terrifyingly uninformed public; etc.) I feel like consumers need to signal a willingness to change tactics - if I'm one of the ones with money who value high quality information, maybe I need to take this one on the chin and pay for something I'd rather were free.

PoutineLover

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Re: The Year of Less - Cait Flanders
« Reply #11 on: November 02, 2023, 12:33:52 PM »
I really love Cait Flanders writing and have followed her since her early blog, and I am a paid subscriber now (I was on the fence but signed up when she had a sale). I'm a millennial who was used to getting the internet for free but I've started paying for some subscriptions because it costs money to produce good content and if I were a creator I would like to get paid for my work. It's not unlike buying a book from an author, which I do for authors I really like, and the rest of the time I use the library.

I actually have been meaning to read the year of less, I read her other book, adventures in opting out, and I really loved it. She writes in such a relatable way and encourages a shift in perspective that is similar to the mustachian principle of examining what brings you value.

 

Wow, a phone plan for fifteen bucks!