Wow, I’ve been living my freedom vanlife for 10 months now! Read all about it here: Vanlife Blog.
I am on the road around Europe with an adorable Fiat Ducato – Compass Avantgarde CV20 campervan, built by Elddis UK (Elddis website). His name is Peter Van.
I have the freedom to be wherever and to do whatever I want. Every day I can choose to have a similar day to the one before, or to embrace change. Learn something new, see new places, talk to new people, try new activities, act in new ways, etc. Or not.
Vanlife can be experienced in so many ways: So what type of vanlife am I, and are you?
What does vanlife even mean? It seems like a silly, simple question with only one possible, obvious answer: life + van = living in a van.
But no, I’m here to validate that there is so much more to it. People attach different meanings to this lifestyle and experience it very differently to one another.
We can all agree that vanlife essentially means living in a movable vehicle rather than a fixed home. But based on my experience and observing others, it can feel and look unique to each of us.
And for the purpose of this post, I’d like to extend the term to caravanners and tent-travellers too.
I’ve met people travelling with motorhomes and caravans larger than my flat in London, and others with their homes wrapped into a small tent, packed on their bicycle racks. Common denominators? Moving, wheels, nature, adventure.
FIND YOUR VANLIFE-STYLE
I’m aware this post is about to turn into a form of Vanlife Test.
Here are just a few vanlife-style options that I’ve put together based on what I’ve lived and seen over these past months on the road. They are not complete, of course; the options are infinite. You can create your own lifestyle, setting, backgrounds, surroundings, routes, feelings, journey.
The choices are endless, and the choices are yours.
In fact, we are free to choose from loads of options in our lives, whether our homes sit on wheels or not. More than you are currently imagining!
The list here-below will appear overly black or white, but imagine each title as a form of scale from 1 to 10, where at one extreme (1) you have the first description and at the other end you have the second (10). Your vanlife-style could sit anywhere on or between 1 to 10, or fluctuate each day depending on how you feel, or you may enjoy a mixture of levels and extremes.
Like an Instragram picture, you can move these filters up and down to change your vanlife-style as you please.
Wanderlust traveller 1<___> 10 Wanderlust entrepreneur
Is your vanlife solely for travels, mostly to explore new places and roam around the planet; or do you take your work and nomadic business along with you too?
Temporarily 1 <___> 10 Permanently
Do you jump in your motorhome, caravan or on your bike (with tent) for short, medium, long periods at the time; or are you permanently living on wheels?
Planned down to a tee 1 <___> 10 Spontaneous flow
Would you have it all mapped out, with plans organised for each day; or go with the flow of the moment, following signs, mood and synchronicity?
All kitted out 1 <___> 10 It will all work out
Do you pack everything and anything, and can’t wait to use your latest gadgets; or see what happens trusting in an adventure, finding the tools as you go?
Campsites 1 <___> 10 Wild camping
Do you prefer sticking to camping sites only, ideally fully catered and with a pool; or tucked away in the wilderness of nature?
Solo Travellers 1 <___>10 Here with my crew
Are you on a self-discovery journey and love yourself enough to take full control and hear your every thought; or roaming with the whole family and pets?
Settle in and stay 1 <___>10 Hop on and off daily
You stay in a location long enough to know the local grocery manager; or pitch-in and pitch-out more often than you visit the loo?
See it all FOMO 1 <___> 10 Chillout JOMO
You can’t leave until you’ve ticked the full guide list at your location; or happy to miss-out and chill (see it maybe next time)?
Packed my routine 1 <___> 10 Open to something new
Does your routine remain unchanged (same wake up call, eating habits and fashion style); or do you adapt and play with local traditions (change your breakfast, wear new clothes, etc)?
THE RESULTS ARE IN: YOUR TYPE OF VANLIFE IS…
Personally, I like spicing up my life with change, and my freedom vanlife with a bit of everything from the scenarios listed above. If I were to score myself in each category, I’d probably end up with an average score of 5 or a new result each week.
There are days I look for a wilder camping option, other days I long for a glamping place with pool and spa. I generally don’t over-plan but at times I prefer knowing exactly where I’ll be for the following week or two. I love socialising, yet I regularly shut out from everyone and enjoy my “me time”.
My vanlife varies a lot.
What kind of vanlife are you or would you have, if you were to take up a new, more nomadic and nature-based lifestyle?
ENHANCED FREEDOM, AWARENESS & GRATITUDE
Unless you’re as cold as icebergs or as stubborn as a mule statue, one thing is pretty much guaranteed to happen on a vanlife journey: increased freedom, awareness and gratitude.
I was an established grateful practitioner even before starting vanlife, but being on the road alone has taken my gratitude to another level. The increased freedom and enhanced awareness has rocketed my appreciation for everything, good and bad, thus the enjoyment for everything as well.
Maybe because most tasks require a little more effort than usual, or because every inch of space matters or perhaps because not everything is as handy as it would normally be. The coffee from the little stove tastes better, the hand-washed laundry (or the wait for your turn at the washing machine) adds extra scent, every drop of the hot shower feels amazing, nature’s sounds and colours are boosted, you care for yourself and the people you meet and around you.
If you’re not living the vanlife, not to worry. You can increase your freedom, awareness and gratitude anywhere you are.
WANT TO CREATE MORE FREEDOM?
It is my passion to support adventurous people committed to evolve, learn and create something new. I am a Freedom Coach because I want to help everyone reconnect with their freedom.
Do you know how free you are currently? Take my Freedom Test here: https://gr8fool.com/freedom-test/
If you’re considering making a change from where you’re at (be it jumping on board the freedom of vanlife or making a few key adjustments to your current circumstance), and want to increase your awareness, gratitude and freedom: please connect with me!