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The RVing Life: Leave Stress Behind

Enjoying the view of Lake Superior at Grand Marais, Michigan.

Enjoying the view of Lake Superior at Grand Marais, Michigan.

Join Full Time RVers and Leave Stress Behind

Is your life too stressful?

Are you stressed out and overwhelmed by all your stuff and the responsibility that goes with it? Is your body showing symptoms of stress like high blood pressure, headaches, anxiety, and general discontent? Most of us don't need any quizzes to know whether or not our lives are too stressful. We know it!

Our lives are cluttered with possessions we don't care about, and people who are not important to us. We have the Jones to keep up with, boring meetings to attend, too many bills, and too many commitments. Even those who are retired can be caught up in a vicious cycle of having too many demands upon their time.

Leave Stress Behind

RVers have discovered that they can leave much of their stress behind when they hit the road full time. Downsizing to smaller living quarters means getting rid of unnecessary possessions. What a relief! Leave behind the lawn mowing, home maintenance, endless meetings, and demands from the family. It's easier than you think!

Life too Stressful?

RV Living: Coping with Close Quarters

There is definitely a period of adjustment when going from living in a house to living in an RV, there's no doubt about it. Because of the tight quarters, we learned on our first RVing trip that everything must be put in its proper place. We quickly learn to avoid stepping on the cat as we squeeze around each other, and it doesn't take long to realize that each person needs a little space. In our case, my husband watches his Sunday afternoon football games in the bedroom with the door closed while I read. Unless the weather is bad, we set up chairs and a small table outdoors. Even if it's just to have a cup of coffee, it's much more relaxing to have it where we can watch the birds or enjoy the view. We often go for walks near our camp or go exploring in our Jeep into the back country. We've both learned that too much togetherness can make us testy, so we each have interests that we can pursue alone.

Once these details are worked out, we are free to enjoy our new lifestyle to the fullest extent. We each have our own way of coping with the close quarters, but one thing common to all of us is the relief we feel at not being tied down to a house and all the stuff that goes with it.

See Boondocking.

Photographs of Lake Superior, Michigan

Lake Superior AuSable, Michigan.

Lake Superior AuSable, Michigan.

Stephanie at Sand Beach, Lake Superior, Michigan

Stephanie at Sand Beach, Lake Superior, Michigan

Find Peace and Serenity in Nature

It's not difficult to find peaceful, quiet places to park your RV for a few days, a few weeks or a few months. It all depends on what kinds of things you like to do. During our years of RVing, we've discovered serene beauty in diverse settings including mountains, deserts, ocean sides and lake sides. One relaxing trip we took was to Michigan's Upper Peninsula where we had beautiful views, many natural areas to hike and the unusual Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore to explore.

Getting Away to Michigan's Upper Peninsula

The serene views to the right are photos taken in the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore located in Michigan's Upper Peninsula along Lake Superior between Munising, Michigan and Grand Marais, Michigan. The little village of Grand Marais, Michigan has a lovely city park situated on cliffs overlooking Lake Superior. The beach below, Agate Beach, is a wonderland of pretty stones including agates for the experienced rock hounds. There are many small roads and trails along the lake, but for the best views, go to Munising and take a tour boat to view the rock formations, arches and dunes from the water.

A beautiful and natural area of the country, the Upper Peninsula is a wonderful place to get back to nature. Enjoy walks on the beach, treks through the woods along the cliff's edges and especially the spectacular sunsets on the lake.

Advantages of RV Living

  • Easily Move to a Better Neighborhood

There are definite advantages to living in an RV. When your house has wheels, if you don't like the neighborhood, you can very easily move. Don't like the dogs barking or the neighbors with the big lights shining into your rig? No problem, just unplug the utilities and drive away.

  • Follow Good Weather

Is the weather too hot, too cold, too rainy? Look at the map and the weather report and find a better climate. If this all sounds like it's too easy to be true, it isn't. One of the reasons people love full-time RVing is that they have the option of moving whenever the whim strikes. We follow the sun to Florida or South Texas or Arizona in the winter and follow the cooler weather to the mountains of Wyoming, Colorado or the Northeast in the summer. It's pretty easy to avoid snow or hurricane season when your house has wheels!

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  • Stay Flexible

Living on wheels also makes it possible to be totally flexible. Get up in the morning in Ohio and decide that it would be really great to visit Nashville? By mid-morning you can be merrily on your way. It's hard to explain the feeling of freedom you get when you pull up stakes, hook up the toad (tow vehicle, which for us is a Jeep Wrangler) and take off. We have a silly little tradition whenever we do this -- I plug in the iPod and play "On The Road Again" as we head down the road. On the other hand, we've come across out-of-the way, beautiful camping spots where we intended to spend the night and ended up staying 3 weeks. It's great to be free!

Sunsets On Michigan Great Lakes

Sunset on Lake Superior at Grand Marais, Michigan.

Sunset on Lake Superior at Grand Marais, Michigan.

Sunset at Petosky State Park. Lake Michigan.

Sunset at Petosky State Park. Lake Michigan.

  • Escape the Demands of Owning a House

Being on the road does discourage all those annoying calls you used to get. Your cell phone is turned on, your number is the same, but you won't be getting calls asking you to be historian for your club, or to bring refreshments for the Ladies Guild meeting. If you had a land line before, you will no longer get solicitations from sales people and charities because they can no longer find you. I just love that!

  • Maintain Connections

You don't have to worry about staying in touchwith the important people in your life. Mail and computer services are easily arranged while you're on the road. Maintain the relationships that are important to you and cull out the rest!

On The Road Again - A Favorite RVer's Song

Imagine Yourself Relaxing...

If you are driving, slow down. You don't have to be anywhere in a hurry, let the traffic fly by if they want. If you are parked, lean back and relax.

Imagine that you are now parked on the edge of a beautiful serene lake, maybe Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. You don't have to pay utility bills or worry about heating your big house all winter. You pay your $25 a night for the full hookup campground and everything is taken care of for the next few days or weeks.

You don't have to mow the lawn or trim the trees or feed the roses. You don't have to vacuum 6 rooms or dust all the knickknacks because you don't have room for knickknacks in the RV.

You won't have to iron your clothes or shine your shoes or style your hair. This is the simple life! Easy, wash and wear hair styles, t-shirt and jeans or shorts are all you need. This afternoon you will have to make the serious decision of whether to go for a hike along the lake shore or sit in the shade and read the book you picked up free at the campground book exchange.

Maybe tonight you'll join the neighboring campers for happy hour around a campfire or maybe you'll just watch the sunset with your spouse. Do you feel your blood pressure going down, yet?

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This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2010 Stephanie Henkel

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