What Downsizing to an RV Can Teach You About Simplicity

Assuming you are not already living full-time in an RV, imagine making the decision to do so. Imagine having to downsize so that everything you own would fit inside a motorhome, fifth wheel, or travel trailer. You would certainly learn a lot about simplifying. In fact, simplicity is the key to making the most out of full-time RVing.

While so many people seem enamored with 2,500+ square feet homes, there is a certain segment of the population just as happy living in 300-400 square feet. Though it may be hard to believe, there are even some full-time RVers whose camping trailer is nothing more than a teardrop trailer just big enough to accommodate sleeping.

The one thing all full timers have in common is a simplified lifestyle. They do not have nearly as much stuff as their stick house counterparts. They cannot because they have nowhere to put it.

●               Look Through Your Kitchen

The Crazy Family Adventure website published a post back in 2016 talking about how the family behind the site simplified in order to live full-time in an RV. One of the things mentioned was kitchenware. Apparently, doing inventory of the kitchen made the family painfully aware of how many unused dishes they owned. For example, they had a cupboard filled with more than forty cups, most of which contained more dust than anything else.

Go through your own kitchen. How many unused plates, bowls, and cups do you have? How many pots and pans in your cupboards do you never use? And what about all those gadgets that were supposed to make cooking so much more enjoyable? If you find anything gathering dust, that means you don’t use it. And if you don’t use it, you don’t need it.

●               Go Through Your Closets

Along the same lines, take a look at all the clothing in your closets. If you are like most people, you can divide all your clothing into three categories:

  • Stuff you wear all the time
  • Stuff you wear occasionally
  • Stuff you haven’t worn in years.

For some reason, we seem to have a hard time getting rid of clothes we no longer wear. But if you are downsizing from a stick house to an RV, you simply won’t have the closet space to carry 10 to 12 outfits per person. Something has to give.

●               Don’t Forget the RV Accessories

More than one full-time RVer tells the story of downsizing from a stick house only to go overboard with all the RV accessories. They buy so many accessories that they still don’t have enough room. So what do they do? They consider buying a larger RV to accommodate all their new stuff.

Some accessories are absolutely necessary. For example, you will need your AirSkirts inflatable RV skirting to protect your RV’s plumbing when the temperatures drop. You will probably need a lawn chair or two for sitting outside. You certainly don’t need half-a-dozen lawn chairs (unless you are taking four kids with you) plus a collection of lawn ornaments, your own picnic table, and a clam tent.

We Americans are used to the consumer mindset. We are taught that consumption is the foundation of our economy. It’s not, but that’s another topic for another post. The point of this post is to say that having to downsize from a stick house to an RV is a really good way to learn about the beauty of simplicity. Living a more simplified lifestyle is one of the things many full timers appreciate about living in an RV.

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