Van Dwelling – Episode One – How to trick yourself into moving into a van in 5 easy steps.

Now you might be wondering “van life is great! Why would I ever need to trick myself into moving into a van, it would be easy!” If you are thinking this and you’re already living in a van then this blog post probably isn’t for you. If on the other hand you are like me, and know in your head that it’s “The Dream” whilst your emotions try to trick you into thinking it’s scary, dangerous, or just ridiculous, then keep reading I have all the tips you need.

  • Step one – Buy or own a van (this step is crucial and can’t be skipped)
  • Step two – The trick: Tell everyone that you are going to “test it out”. I found it helpful to tell people an exact date that I was going to “test it” and I made that date a few nights after I was actually going to….
  • Step Three – Move all your belongings into your van
  • Step Four – Leave for the night in your van and don’t return (if people are going to look for you, make sure you tell them you’re staying out, don’t just go missing)
  • Step Five – If you have successfully completed steps 1-4 you should have now woken up in your van. Congratulations homie.

 Here’s my first night of van life…

When I had anticipated it in the past, I thought it would be scary, or lonely, or stressful or sad. I’m not sure why I had that image but that’s what I had prepared myself for, like the first night of a long trip when you have jet lag and just sit in the hotel and cry.

Home Sweet Home

But it wasn’t any of those things. I followed steps 1 to 4 and as I pulled up I felt like parts of my soul were coming back together. Like a part of me that had been lost was glowing and warm.

I couldn’t sleep for ages, listening to every sound that anything made, letting the fact that I was back in my van by myself settle in. I was too excited, had too many thoughts about what this meant and what on earth I’m doing with my life. I thought about how it’s a little bit nicer sleeping in a van with the doors open, at the bottom of a crag, in the warm, gazing at the stars; than in a cold rainy spot in Surrey. After an hour I decided I couldn’t lay awake any longer and opened the doors.

Very grateful for clear skies and moonlight for my first night back in the van

Even though it was nighttime it was honestly as light as day outside, I stepped out onto the cold dewy ground and looked around at the (thankfully) peaceful and empty car park and I couldn’t have been more grateful. I stretched out running through 5 minutes of yoga poses by the light of the moon. Impromptu midnight moonlit yoga? I guess this isn’t so bad.

When I woke up in the morning, it was absolutely tipping it down, but I was happy and I had done it. I had moved into my van. Step Five, Complete.

Soaking wet and Super Happy. Night One Complete ✔

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