One thing I got asked a lot is, “Why?” Why am I going to start living out of my car? What inspired this dream, and what are my reasons for doing it?
To be honest, that is one of the hardest questions I can possibly answer. In the years and, more specifically, the months that have been leading up to this, I actually never stopped to ask myself that very question. Every time I am asked, I find myself thinking that I don’t even have an answer to give. To be completely honest, I have no idea why. I have no idea what to expect from this new lifestyle. I can discuss all of the various things that I have thought about, but not a one of those truly explains my drive to go ahead and move forward with this insane idea.
Perhaps here I can lay down several thoughts about myself–who I am and what I am all about–along with several thoughts about the future that lies ahead. The physical preparations for the future will barely be mentioned (that is for a future post), but this will touch on my psychological preparations to some vague degree.
Besides people who actually can’t do the kinds of things I’m working on (living out of a car for me, but there are a ton of alternatives), the next most common thing I get from people is that they would be too scared of various different things to try it.
It starts to seem that many people are under the impression that I don’t have those fears. That’s not true. I have all of those fears, probably more vivid than the one who lets it stop them. In addition to those fears, I have more fears about it that most people don’t even think about, because I’ve actually put in the thought and realized that even more aspects of it are utterly terrifying.
The fear doesn’t separate me from those people. At that point, we’re all still the same. If anything, I’m actually more terrified of the future I have set forth for myself than anyone who dismisses the idea of such a future based on the obvious fears. I’ve just made my decision to use those fears as empowerment; as a tool to teach me and prepare me; as extra energy to propel myself forward into the unknown.
Outlook and Myself
Perhaps what does separate me the most is my outlook on life.
I view the question of “Why?” to be somewhat silly. Major life decisions are rarely ones that I sit around and list my reasons for doing. I am a very intuitive person, and intuition tends to be what I rely on for major changes.
Many who know me best may even find that confusing. I also put a lot of thought and research into the things I do. Step 1 may always be intuition, but Step 2 is always research, learning, and thinking about the details. In this case, intuition told me to live out of a car. At that point, I was nowhere near ready and had absolutely no clue how to make it work. I approached the idea slowly and cautiously, and somewhere I’m not even sure crossed from researching it as a possibility to researching it as a viable option and learning endlessly about what I would need to do.
Through all of that, there is a step 3. I’m not sure where step 3 began. I was doing a lot of research on the idea and even began spending money on things that I had spent time researching about. Somewhere in that, it became a commitment. A terrifying but honest commitment. I was suddenly buying solar panels for my new car and preparing things I had waited on until the commitment was made. I have since often wondered when this line was crossed, but I can’t say. That is now where I am. Now, step 4 is making the final plunge!
Perhaps that explains the process I have been through, but there has also been an overreaching outlook on life that I have adopted with this. I could go into years of my life that have led to me fully adopting this type of outlook, but I think I’m already being long winded in this post, so I will spare that.
I believe that if you put yourself out there, the universe (and/or God, and/or whatever you wish to call it) will respond. You can put yourself out into the world, looking for something specific. The universe will either respond by giving it or telling you no. Or, like me, you can open yourself to the unknown and put yourself out into situations that you have no idea what will happen. Expect nothing but the unexpectable, with but a glimmer of hope for the unbelievable and the amazing. I believe the universe will give a response to that beyond what you could ever possibly imagine. That is what I’m looking for.
About Nature, Off-Grid, Minimalism, Sustainable Living, etc.
Besides the points above, the next most obvious questions about why I’m doing this tends to be on the topic of my thoughts about such things as living off of nature and such things as off-grid living, minimalism, sustainable living, and all of the other related things.
First and foremost, I’m an outdoors type of person. I thrive off of what we generally call the “wilderness”, whereas I instead have a tendency to get depressed and frustrated within the normal confines of civilization. It’s already regular for me to escape into nature as much as often, where nature re-energizes me and allows me to truly thrive. Physical, mental, and spiritual elements are all present in my love for true, undisturbed nature. Although physical and mental are obvious or already stated, the spiritual is perhaps the biggest; I will spare stories, but the spiritual connection nature provides me is deeper than any I can experience anywhere else–I often crave it immensely.
Beyond the simple beauty that is nature, I have shared many experiences with people interested in several different kinds of sustainable living and minimalism. Although I hardly understood it as well as I understand such things today, those experiences were certainly shaping in bringing me to this point in my life. Furthermore, as I became increasingly minimalist about hiking and my general lifestyle, I became to value minimalist ways of life. At this point, although I have a 2 bedroom apartment, I hardly use more than half of my living room, and barely even touch any other room in the apartment at all. I believe this already highlights the extent to which I have embraced it in my already existing lifestyle.
Additionally, I don’t necessarily count what I am going to be doing entirely off-grid. Although I will be relying on solar power to generate my own electricity, I remain tied to cellular data plans for work, and I will be relying on gasoline. Additionally, a lot of the food I will eat will be grown on-grid. Basically, I’m still quite on-grid with this new lifestyle. Although an off-grid lifestyle is a great idea and I’m going to be doing it pretty close to what is easily possible in this world, it can be done much more effectively than anything I am doing. I am happy to say that I will likely be using much less energy resources with the new lifestyle, but it’s just an awesome benefit, truly.
Although I cannot begin to answer why I’m doing this, perhaps this begins to show a lot of my thoughts about the whole thing. I could go on for pages more about everything attractive to me about the new lifestyle. For example, why I believe working as a computer programmer actually makes living out of the car the ideal circumstances, among many other things. I have discussed these details with people, but this was just a more intimate look into my head and what truly matters to me and drives me towards this new lifestyle at the end of the day.