Meanwhile, she observed her wood-stove-using neighbor and started rethinking her heating plans. “A wood stove is a lot of work. She’s out there every day splitting wood! I realized I’m not that type of person. You really need to be honest about yourself when you’re making decisions like that.”
So, if you’re on the cusp of diving into the nomadic life, you might pause and reflect. Has the glamorous allure of #vanlife obscured some of the realities? Are you really that type of person?
What type of person is that? (If you have to ask, then maybe you’re not.) Here’s an excerpt from a November 2016 post:
...I've assembled a list of attributes that, from my experience, are shared by happy, successful nomads. I think a lot of the attributes also apply to the building-dwelling life. (No doubt there are more things that could be on my list. Feel free to add your own.) Rate yourself on a no–somewhat–yes scale. Obviously, more yeses are better.
I have an independent nature
I'm self-directed and self-motivated
I always have a back-up plan
I'm not tied to a location
I'm not tied to a culture
I'm not tied to the past
I look forward to new experiences
I can entertain myself
I like solving problems and have a good track record at it
I'm good at finding answers
I have a good bullshit detector
I adapt easily to changing situations
I'm usually calm
I can distinguish between the essential and inconsequential
I'm comfortable with tools
I'm not afraid of getting dirty
I know generally how vehicles and gizmos work
I can change a flat tire
I know what to do in emergencies
I enjoy camping
I have an adequate sense of direction
I like myself
If you didn't score many yeses or somewhats, you might want to think more deeply about this whole nomad thing. You might do some work on yourself. Is your temperament changeable? Your personality? Some psychology professionals say yes. Some of the skills on the list can be learned. Knowledge can be gained.
My intent isn't to talk a lot of people out of their nomad plans. It's to prepare them. I try not to say, "Hey gang! Come be a full time nomad! It's perfect for everyone!" Because it isn't. I don't want to see frustrated, anxious, stumbling, unhappy campers. I don't want anyone to regret their decision. I don't want anyone to crash and burn. I want them to have the life that works great for them. For you.