Full time RVers and VanDwellers are as diverse as any individuals you’d find in a traditional community. Some love to live in RV parks or explore National Parks. Some prefer to stealth camp in urban areas. And others, like me, are boondockers who crave the peace and solitude that only the most remote National Forest and Bureau of Land Management (BLM) lands can give us. Some of us are retired, some, digital nomads. Some have families. Some have none. We come from all walks of life, socioeconomic statuses, races, religions and genders, but we all have one thing in common: the need for freedom and adventure.
There are so many in our society who dream of living the RV or Vandwelling life. But may not be sure t’s right for you. I want to help you decide, so I came up with a list of 8 signs based on my experience – and others I’ve met – that you might be ready to be a fulltime RVer or VanDweller:
- You love road trips. If you’ve taken at least few road trips (or have always dreamed of it) and the thought of hopping in the car, hitting the open road and seeing where it takes you gets your adrenaline pumping and your daydreams buzzing, then full time RVing or Vandwelling could be the life for you!
- You fantasize about being free. My whole life, I just wanted to be free (watch the YouTube Video here for my story). I didn’t know what that meant really, or even what it looked like. I just knew that my life, chasing the American Dream, working for a few weeks of ‘freedom” each year, with a promise of emancipation when I retired, didn’t feel much like freedom. Does that sound familiar? Do you robotically go to work every day, pay your bills, run your errands, go to your parties and submit to a life you thought you were supposed to want, all the while dreaming of something else? If so, you’re one of us!
- You crave adventure! Life feels monotonous. Blasé. You love to explore, see new things, go to new places and experience different cultures/communities. And your life feels more and more like a jail; keeping you from living the life you crave.
- Your life feels phony. For many of us, we had a nagging feeling most of our adult lives that something wasn’t quite right. We did everything we were told: got the degree, the career, the house, the spouse and the children. And when that didn’t fulfill us, we bought the timeshare, the boat and /or the RV. Day after day we’d stare at our freedom parked in the backyard, with longing, as it sat, lonely and unused 49 weeks a year. Deep inside, we felt like our whole life was a sham And then we’d feel guilty or ‘weird’ for craving freedom and independence. If this resonates, you’re one of us!
- You realize you have too much stuff. One day you wake up, look around your house or apartment and realize it’s full of stuff you rarely use and don’t need. You realize you’re paying rent or mortgage to house your possessions and if it weren’t for all that stuff you could be lighter and more free to travel, explore and live!
- You decide to be more minimalist. Once you realize you have a bunch of junk you don’t need, you decide to stop buying. For me, two years before I made the leap to full-time RV Living, I made a conscious decision to stop buying anything I didn’t need; no new lamps, vases or pictures. No new shoes, dresses jewelry, or handbags. I decided I had enough stuff and it was time to simplify my life. That was the beginning of a mind-shift toward tiny living.
- You cruise Craigslist for RVs or Vans. Yeah. You’re ready… If you’re daydreaming at work and the next thing you know you’re browsing craigslist ‘just to get an idea’ of cost. You’re practically there!
- You spend your free time watching YouTube Videos or reading blogs of full-time RVers and Vandwellers. If you’re practically obsessed with escaping the rat race and following your dreams and you find yourself excited and inspired by others who are doing it. You’re ready!
Of course, being mentally ready, doesn’t mean you can sell everything tomorrow, buy an RV or van and hit the road next week. It takes planning. But if you can relate to most things in the list above, you may want to make an appointment with your realtor and start finding ways to become a digital nomad!
For those who are full-timers, what was the one sure sign you knew this was the life for you?