As long as you keep going, you’ll keep getting better. And as you get better, you gain more confidence. That alone is success. –Tamara Taylor
Building my RV dream is exciting. It also scares me to death. On some days, I look at my plan and wonder if I’ll ever realize my dream of full-time RVing. It’s pretty easy to lose confidence when facing a major life change. That’s why I’ve developed 7 ways to build confidence in pursuing my RV dream:
Refute Your Inner Critic
Louise L. Hay said, “You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” I struggle with confidence because my inner critic has been overactive . . . You have too much student loan debt . . . You’ll freak out when your RV gets its first flat tire . . . You’ll be broke in six months. . . I’ve become more aware of my self-talk and turn it around to feed my RV dream . . . The way I’m saving money will get me that rig in no time . . . I have the resourcefulness to deal with any breakdown.
Getting support from friends, family, and loved ones helps us build courage and trust in ourselves. I have a few co-workers who know about my dream and understand what I’m going through. Being able to share my dream with them and to get their advice assures me that I’m on the right path. And when I haven’t been able to turn to a live person, free and anonymous support apps like 7 Cups have been a good alternative.
When I need to relax, I close my eyes and imagine myself living the RV dream: doing kettle bell exercises under my RV awning while enjoying the cool morning air, writing a blog post while enjoying French press coffee in my little dinette, reading myself to sleep in my cozy Murphy bed. Even though these seem like mundane activities, visualizing them reminds of the free spirit I strive to be. A vision board also helps.
When I feel doubtful that I can pull off an RV life, I just work on preparation as much as possible. That’s what my July 12 post was about: What are the cons to full-time RVing? But it’s more than just thinking of all the negatives. I watch YouTube videos on topics such as how much full-time RVing can cost and where to camp overnight for free. I also follow the blog Camper Chronicles because it gives me ideas on how to set a budget each month. I expose myself to as much information as possible because knowing what’s involved makes me feel prepared . . . and more confident.
Affirmations are positive (i.e., affirming) statements we say to ourselves. We hear this all the time. But I read about a way to get your brain to accept affirmations more quickly–I state my affirmations as questions such as, “How am I saving up for my RV so quickly?” instead of “I can save money for my RV very quickly.” This kind of affirmation will stick because when asked a question, we tend to look for the answer, which builds confidence.
Do Something Small
I get overwhelmed when I think about my four-year RV plan. Before hitting the road, there’s so much to be done: pay off student loan, accumulate six months of living expenses, save up the money to buy the RV, purge about 95% of my stuff. To keep from getting depressed about all this, I take the plan and break it down into month-by-month chunks. For example, what can I do this month? Well, I have $250 I can put into my six-month living expense fund. Done! I also can pick five blouses I no longer wear and take them to Goodwill. Boom! Early wins. And these small early wins add up to bigger accomplishments.
Do Something Scary
I love my comfort zone, but it’s holding me back from my RV dream. In my comfort zone, I can ignore the fears I sometimes have about uprooting my life to go on the road. But Susan Jeffers says, “Feel the fear and do it anyway.” Ever since I started this journey, the first scary thing I did was begin purging books. This is hard because I’ve always been a bibliophile. But, it’s either my library or the RV. So, each week I take two totes of books to Half Price Books and get a few bucks back. I even find at least one book per day to purge. Do something small (see above).
Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit. – e e cummings