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Working And Traveling Is Easier Than You Think

Lately, I’ve been seeing a lot of programs all over the media that allow you to travel in groups and work while traveling. These programs are amazing and make the process very simple; they put you with a group, allow you to share rooms so that the prices are cheaper and overall it seems like an incredible experience.

There are also other ways that you can work and travel, like work on a cruise line, be a flight attendant, teach English abroad and a few others. But I think the perspective that you must join a program in able to work and travel needs to be rethought.

None of these programs ever stuck out to me because I wanted to travel for many different reasons but personally never wanted to stay in a group and have a set-up group schedule. Hopefully, I’m not the only one that feels this way.

You can work and travel in many other ways besides these, here are some that have worked for me.

Use Craigslist In The Area You’re Traveling

This seems so simple, and it is, but also very effective! My boyfriend and I traveled the coast for six months and every city we went to, we browsed Craigslist for available jobs, from one day gigs to temporary jobs. And we found many, from loading up boxes to photo shoots!

You can also post up a resume on Craigslist, offering your skills. For me, I offered writing and photography and I actually booked some autobiography and resume gigs for decent pay!

Talk to the businesses in your city

Yes, I’m aware this seems very different than what most travelers would do, but we found our best travel job on the road by simply asking around!

We went from one business to the next, told them our story and asked if they needed any miscellaneous help. We scored ourselves some jobs at a restaurant for two months, made over minimum wage, plus tips and made some amazing friends and memories! We got so many responses by sharing our stories that not only did people need help, but they wanted to find ways to help.

People offered simple yard work or clean up jobs. It got to the point that we had to start turning jobs down because we already had a few and needed time to still explore the area and enjoy our travel.

We did not have trouble finding a job anywhere that we went. Yes, I’m serious… anywhere! We were even honest about the short amounts of time we were willing to work.

Here are some things I did not do during my travels, but would consider for the future that are more based from a computer.

A virtual assistant

Online Marketer

Freelancer websites (UpWork, Writers.work)

The reason I never brought myself to try these things may have subconsciously been because I like to meet new people and work physically, but these jobs can give you more flexibility and even better pay. Being a digital nomad is worth looking into!

If you would like me to write something about places you can make a bit of money with writing/social media posting, please let me know in the comment section.

Something I want to say as well, is that online surveys are not worth your time and should not be considered a source of income. I have tried nearly every online survey platform out there and it takes aggravated, boring decades to make a simple ten dollars.

Making money while seeing the world does not have to be through a program and it does not need to be made in one spot. We made a decent amount of money with these simple strategies while traveling five different states and experienced so much more than we could in one city.  It may seem intimidating, but it is so exhilarating and really allows you to grow and become a more independent person.

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Cape Kiwanda – Pacific City, Oregon

Cape Kiwanda is my favorite cape on the Oregon coast, and that says a lot because Oregon is full of beautiful coastal lines.

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The best thing about the Oregon coast is it’s Oregon Beach Bill, which allows you to wander anywhere your heart desires on the beaches, as the beaches belong to the people and are protected from being owned or industrialized. So many signs can say to not go beyond this point or something, but it’s more of a warning.

Cape Kiwanda is located in Pacific City, a small, simple and beautiful town that I love so much! The beach is a very public beach and not hard to find, it also has Pelican Brewing (which has great beer) right on the beach, which is a perfect place with outdoor seating to enjoy the view of haystack rock and the sunset.

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There’s also a good amount of waves to surf, which many people do here. If your entering the beach, you’ll see a huge sandhill to the right, climb this and you will be on top of Cape Kiwanda.

Once you get on top of this sand hill, there is so much to space to wander, and so many views to see, make sure not to miss a single one and to experience it as best you can, ignoring the warning signs!

Also, make sure to take the scenic view to get to Pacific City, which allows you to see two other capes before Cape Kiwanda, it’s called the three capes scenic drive. You’ll take a right about 20 miles before Pacific City to take this route, there will only be one sign, so much sure to keep a look out for it.

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Map location and directions here

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Best Places To Travel In The PNW

So many times, I’ve heard of people wanting to travel outside of the U. S, before exploring the wonders of this very country. I was once that person, but I have discovered that there is so much beauty so close to our homes.

I grew up in the Pacific Northwest and never realized that it is a prized area to live until I chose to explore it. Here are my favorite places I would recommend to anyone wanting to explore the outdoors of the PNW.

Washington:

Olympic National Park:

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The Olympic National Park is a broad place to mention, but every waterfall and every trail at this park is unlike any other in Washington state. There are waterfalls every 10 miles or less (my favorite is Rocky Brook Falls), it is full of temperate rainforests and located so close to the beautiful salt waters of Washington.

Vance Creek Bridge:

This 422 feet long famous railroad hovers 347 feet over Vance Creek and is located right outside the Olympic National Forest. It is the second highest railway in the U. S. Directions to this cannot be found on Google maps, possibly because it is considered trespassing on land owned by a logging company and there are many ways they have tried to keep hikers out, like signs, knocked down trees and gates.

The bridge is in Shelton, you’ll take NF-1700 for a while before turning onto NF-23, where it is right off to the right. You’ll see lots of knocked down trees and a gate near the entrance. Many of the articles I read made it seem like it was dangerous to go and you could be arrested, but I did not run into any cops, any logging trucks or security of any sort. The hike is about a mile long, but not difficult and well worth it! The bridge is spectacular, surrounded by trees and covered in art by the last rebel hikers. It’s an adrenaline rush to walk on this massive abandoned railroad, surrounded by trees. The beginning portion of the bridge has been taken down, though you can still reach the wooden part of the bridge if your brave enough! I recommend anyone to see this bridge before it is totally demolished.

Lower Lewis Falls:

Unfortunately, I am yet to see this amazing waterfall, but it is next on my to-do list. It is a wide, gorgeous waterfall located in the south/east portion of Mt. Rainier National Forest.

Palouse Falls:

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This waterfall is one of Washington’s largest. Located in Lacrosse, in west eastern, WA. You can get a stunning view of the enormous waterfall before taking the hike down towards the waterfall that can be difficult at times and has many alternate routes. You’ll see another waterfall before reaching an overlook of Palouse. There is a small trail down to the bottom of the falls, leading into a small lake as well.

Rattlesnake Ridge:

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This is a wondrous two hike located in North Bend. It starts off at Rattlesnake lake and you hike to the top of a wide ledge, where you can see the bright blue lake from above. It is quiet the site!

Cape Flattery:

Another natural wonder I have yet to see, but will be soon! Cape flattery has to be one, if not the most beautiful, cape in Washington state. This cape is located on the very top of the state, on the western edge.

Oregon:

Cape Kiwanda:

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I shall admit, the entire route down 101 south through Oregon is absolutely stunning and a must-do summer trip! There is a route right outside of Tillamook, called Three Capes Scenic Route. Unfortunately, I had missed the turn to this route and missed the other two capes, but Cape Kiwanda is quiet possibly Oregon’s most beautiful cape.

It is located in Pacific City, it starts off as a popular beach and you walk up the sandy hills to stand on the cape. There are many signs and gates that tell you that beyond this gate is dangerous, but it is important to keep in mind that Oregon’s Beach Bill states that the people may still roam wherever the please, as the beaches belong to the people.

Tamolich Blue Pool:

This is one of my favorite locations in the PNW! The tamolich blue pool used to be a waterfall, but after a volcanic eruption, the waterfall was covered with lava rock. The water now seems from the bottom of the rocks and slows the water down enough to create a clear, still pool that is the most brilliant blue you’ll ever see. It is spectacular!

The blue pool is located off of the Mckenzie Highway and was a little difficult to find, as there are no signs off the highway. You’ll turn on NF-730, which leads to the trailhead, it is a two mile hike and not difficult. You can walk all around the water and there are several places to cliff jump into the frigid water, though you can also walk around to get right into the water.

Crater Lake:

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This magnificent location shares a special place in my heart. Crater lake is in central Oregon and is one the top places to see the in the Pacific Northwest. This lake lies in the Cascade Range, it used to be a volcano named Mount Mazama. This volcano had a massive eruption that caused the mountain to implode on itself, forming a giant crater that filled with rain and snowfall. It is also a magnificent blue and surrounded by gorgeous mountains.

I recommend coming to this place in the early morning. We showed up around 7am, when the water was still and there were some clouds in the sky. The reflection of the mountains and the sky coming off of the lake was like pure magic, it took a few moments of staring to really understand where the water started. It was absolutely stunning, like nothing I’ve ever seen before. You can hike many trails at Crater Lake National Park and drive around the entire crater.

There is one area that you can hike a mile down to cliff jump into 2000 feet deep beautiful water, called Cleetwood Cove and it is an absolute must!

Toketee Falls:

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This waterfall is not far from Crater Lake, when leaving the north entrance, it is off highway 138. The hike is about 1.5 miles and not very difficult. There is a viewpoint that allows you to see the waterfall, but viewpoints are never quiet good enough… So there is a rope next to the main viewpoint area and a sign telling you not to go down to the waterfall, but many have done it anyways. The rope is absolutely necessary, as it is very steep getting down to the falls, but well worth it. The water is the perfect place to swim, but very cold!

Proxy Falls:

One of my favorite Oregon waterfalls! It is about 226 feet tall and flows beautifully, close to the rock wall. The hike is almost two miles and not difficult.

Samuel Boardman Scenic Corridor:

This is several different pull offs off 101 south in Brookings, OR. Each pull off is so gorgeous, full of capes and natural arches that you can hike to. It coordinates with the gorgeous Oregon coast trail.

Painted Hills:

An absolutely magical place, where the desert hills are decorated in vivid color, in central/eastern Oregon. It is an absolute must see and should be a wonder of the world!

California:

Redwood Forest:

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This forest is located in many places in northwest California; the tallest trees on Earth, reaching over 300 feet tall! All the forest areas are full of wonder and are a must see right next to the coast! Some trees were at least ten feet in width!

McArthur Burney Falls:

This waterfall is one of Earth’s ten wonders of the world and located in northern California near Burney, CA. It spans 250 feet wide with numerous falls, surrounded by luscious forest.

MossBrae Falls:

Another stunning waterfall with a wide span, this waterfall trickles against a rock wall, covered in bright green moss. It is a very unique waterfall and I love the way that it flows! It’s located in Dunsmuir, CA.

Lassen Volcanic National Park:

This park is covered in colorful desert and also bright blue waters, which makes a gorgeous combination. Full of clear, blue lakes, waterfalls and mountains.

Many people do not consider southern California as the Pacific Northwest, but if it were, I would mention Yosemite National Park and Joshua Tree Park. Both unique and stunning locations.

It is difficult not to mention even more places within the PNW, but the area is covered in natural wonders.

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R. V Travel Tips

My boyfriend and I have been traveling in our R. V for about four months now; there have been many challenges and mistakes that we have learned from this new experience and we’ve realized that living in a house on wheels is much different.

Here are some tips to help your R. V travels go a bit smoother, these are the resources that we took advantage of while living on the road.

Boondocking:

Boondocking is a term used for overnight parking for free in many areas. National Forests are the best places to boondock, as it is completely legal to overnight park in National Forests for nearly a month as long as your not disrespectful to the forest. Other things we looked out for were abandoned parking lots, or any lots that had no signage saying that they’re is no overnight parking in that area.

Some stores such as Walmart and Safeway were useful to us often, we spent a total of two weeks in an R. V park during our four month travel and saved a ton of money doing it.

Finding Internet:

During our travels, we shared a pay-as-you-go phone, our internet was limited, which we needed to look for work, email and my blog here! We’ve found that you can find WI-FI without a password in a lot of unexpected places. If we were parked someplace near a store, we would find internet almost every time.

Starbucks was a common place to go and use internet. We had tried other places, but found that Starbucks was consistent, with plugins, reliable internet and a coffee every time.

Sewage:

Many cities will actually have a free area to dump your sewage, make sure to look up if any city your traveling by has it, an extra $10 adds up if you’re needing it every week.

Water:

We ran into many situations where we had no water in our tank. In some ways, this is good; it did not weigh us down when we were driving and saved us gas money. I recommend emptying your tank before driving a long distance.

We made sure to keep our one gallon jugs we bought previously and refill them whenever we could for usually only about 40 cents. If we couldn’t get water in our tanks than we would use that water to drink, wash our hands, brush our teeth, give to our pets and any way we found need be.

Craigslist:

Craigslist was our number one resource for finding work on the road. We could find one day to a few months worth of work all in one area where it is easy to communicate. A few times we would put up posts asking for a place to park our R. V, we got a few responses that led us to other helpful resources and even met some amazing people along the way.

Showers:

Because we didn’t stay in many R. V parks, our showering situation was a little different. We are quiet the naturalists and for the most part would cleanse ourselves in natural waters, but we took advantage of free trial gym memberships often. Every new city we entered that we knew we would be in for a good amount of time, we would get free week trials, where we would use their equipment, pools, steam rooms and showers every day while we had it.

Not having it for so long would allow us to appreciate it even more when we finally got our free trial.

Road Atlas:

During our entire travels, we only used maps. Beforehand, we had gotten a state map for every state and an atlas. The atlas is what I most recommend for finding roads, but every map will show something that another doesn’t and goes unnoticed on a GPS. I recommend maps in general, rather than a GPS, as you can see where the next National Forest will be and any other natural areas to visit.

When we entered a new city, we would visit the visitors center with magazines on attractions and city maps as well. There are so many things that you can discover at a visitors center than you never knew existed.

R. V Travelers App:

There are some extremely useful apps to help travelers find the cheapest gas near them, let travelers know if a Walmart is okay for overnight stay or not. Not all Walmart’s are overnight stay like people say, but as long as they’re are a few other R. V’s there, that was enough for us to stay one night.

A few of these apps are GasBuddy and Walmart Parking App. There are plenty more useful apps as well, depending on what your looking for.

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Blessed To Live In The Pacific Northwest

Every state we’ve explored has been so different from the last, and each one is beautiful in it’s own unique way. But traveling further south through the hot, empty and beautiful roads of Nevada and to Idaho, I can proudly say that I am happy to live in the Pacific Northwest.

Once we entered southern California, towards Nevada, it was like a fight against the heat. The water really didn’t taste the same and the water crisis was even more severe.

We begged for a river, a beach, lake, anything to cool ourselves down, but all around us were dried up creeks and salt flats.

I am grateful to have experienced these areas, especially to drive all the way up Nevada on 93N with absolutely nothing but rocks, wildlife and mountains around us. It was our most peaceful drive yet.

The central Nevada area is hot during the day, but rains and storms with rapid lighting and thunder all night, it’s really quiet beautiful.

The heat may have caused us to flee from entering Arizona, but we shall be back in the future.

If there’s anything I’ve learned from these travels, it’s that nothing goes as planned no matter how much you plan it. But that’s what makes it exciting, that’s what allows you learn.

It’s not about reaching a destination, because there will never be one. It’s about realizing the beauty of the moment with you now. We could have turned off the road every five miles and explored something amazing because this Earth is truly magic wherever you turn.

But for once, I’m grateful for the rain. I’m thankful to lay on cold, green grass and be surrounded by evergreen trees and mountains. I now know for myself that I am so blessed to live in the Pacific Northwest.

We are coming back to you Washington. We can’t wait to swim in your lakes, be in your mountains and cool breezes.

Yet there is no end to our travels, they’ve only just begun. I cannot wait to plan our next adventure and to continue to explore the beauty around me every single day. I’ve realized that I thrive off of it, the journey and the beauty, to discover something wondrous. And letting go of one single destination has allowed me to appreciate every beautiful moment.

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Small Living, Big Decisions

It took a while for me to get used to making sustainable decisions while never being parked in one place for more than a week at most. But these decisions are important for me and so I have continued to strive to find ways to implement an eco-friendly living into a small budget, r.v lifestyle.

Some steps that I have taken so far is not taking a vehicle along with us. Though our r.v does not take bio-fuel, I’d say that we ride our bikes more than anything so far during our travels. Keeping our r.v in one spot, we travel by foot and by bike 80 percent of the time.

Not taking a vehicle to tow behind us was a tough decision, but it has already paid off and I thoroughly enjoy walking and riding my bike places. Everything is at walking distance, but if I had a vehicle I would take advantage of it, though it is not needed. This decision has saved us gas, by not caring the extra wait, it has spared Ricky the extra worry and also spared the atmosphere of the extra harmful fuems.

Some other simple decisions I have made is buying compostable garbage bags, though they are a little more expensive, it is far worth it. For any of you who do not know, plastic is not compostable and one of the worst things for our environment. Because of this we refuse plastic bags in grocery stores at all cost, and bring reusable bags for everything we need to carry. In Oregon, some stores give you a discount for using reusable bags as well.

Recycling is another big decision, it takes a moment to get used to not having your own garbage and recycle bin right outside your home, but it is worth finding other solutions. We have two small bins where we put our recycles, we hide them away from our eyes view so the house does not seem cluttered.

For those of you who do not already know, for the most part we have been boondocking, which means not paying for r.v parks, but rather parking in National Forests, parking lots and anywhere where we can overnight park at. This can make it hard sometimes to find garbage bins that we wont get in trouble for putting our garbage in.

Recycling is free to all cities, Oregon especially made finding recycling areas easy to find. So many of the things we use are recyclable and it makes a difference to take the extra second to clean your recyclables. We have found we can make most of our waste recyclable and therefore free.

When not being at an rv park, it can be hard to keep our water tanks full of water, currently they are empty. This can save us money on gas because the rv weighs less, but it is very important to stay hydrated in the California heat.

We have a few one gallon plastic bottles that we refill just about everyday. Refilling these bottles instead of continuing to buy more saves us lots of money as well as sparing the environment the extra plastic.

Decisions like these are very important to me, as they should be for anyone trying to live in an eco-friendly way. Our experience can be a prime example that no matter the situation, it is possible to decrease our carbon imprint as much as we can. It’s all about putting intention into your decisions.

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Smaller Spaces, Bigger Love

I guess you could say that living in a small home can really challenge a relationship. There’s not much room for any personal space or personal time, nor much space to hide your living habits. To some people, these circumstances can seem intimidating, we considered it a new opportunity for growth.

At first I thought such a little space of living wouldn’t require too much cleaning, but three animals along with all our belongings has required us to come together with creative ways to keep things tidy.

Every obstacle is a new challenge for us to solve together, how to keep certain things away so Forrest wont chew them up, places to put the cat food so Forrest wont eat it, making sure the animals have plenty of fresh air while were gone, how to hide things that we don’t want to see, like garbage, recycling, laundry.

We still find ourselves getting rid of things we don’t need and our ability to condense is a lot stronger than before. We both share a dedication to our living and to make sure that we are happy in it.

Our views have changed about personal space and personal time, we hardly have any personal belongings, we share everything together. This lifestyle, this home and our relationship has become our greatest commitment.

There is an entirely new feeling that comes along with living with someone in a small space, you feel incredibly close at all times, everything feels so much more intimate and you begin to be even more involved in one another’s thoughts and lives. This a feeling I will never give up.

Smaller spaces has not created bigger arguments, it has allowed us to grow even closer. Before we left on this journey, I can say that any arguments were truly due to the impatience and dissatisfaction with how we were living, and I think that many couples feel this.

We had a different set of priorities, like money, rent, bills, work with an endless cycle of not going out and doing what really made us happy and never speaking about what really mattered to us.

But I have never been happier than I have, being set free in these smaller spaces and making our big dreams happen together. I realize that a new lifestyle has made me continue to see the man of my dreams while we speak of genuine conversations and see the beauty of the world together.

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I’ve Never Felt As Blessed As I Have With Less

At first, minimizing my things was simply to make sure I had just enough to fit into our 37 ft. r. v, yet it soon started to become much more than that.

Now living in a space much smaller than any other permanent living situation I have ever been in, I don’t remember exactly what it was that I sold in the first place. I know my every belonging and I cherish them more than I’ve ever appreciated abundance.

Every item that I have has an importance to me, and if it doesn’t, than I have no further use for it rather than to give it to someone who will appreciate it more.

I have found that I appreciate a gift a lot more than I ever have, I appreciate generosity and kindness more than any thing that can be bought. When I find myself looking for something that I need, I no longer seek out nice retail stores, but rather thrift stores and yard sales, for I have no need to be ashamed in doing so. I’ve found things of far more character in these places that cost much less.

I’ve also found myself giving much more than before, oddly enough because I have less things, but I find that the law of attraction brings things of value right back to me because of it.

I’ve realized that all the pointless stuff I bought at one point was simply to fill a void within me, much like a lot of people do. But it’s as if now my heart is too full for meaningless things to be in my life. I used to find myself with more than I truly needed but always unsatisfied and wanting more. Here I am now, I could pack my personal belongings into a few boxes, and I feel so blessed for all the things I have. I have a home, food, water, a job, amazing friends and family and a loving boyfriend, I have three gorgeous animals and I don’t need anything more.

With this mindset, I find that more meaningful gifts and people have come my way, and I am far more grateful for them than I would have been previously.

Everyone’s version of minimalism is different, it is okay to have many of something that has great value to you, it’s getting rid of the things that truly have no value to you at all. There is always a long conversation with yourself that, that item may be useful at one point, but let’s be honest, it never is.

To me, I like to keep a lot of spiritual tools around, crystals, incense, candles and such, but I cherish each and every one of those belongings and have found no purpose in extra clothing, shoes, makeup, hair accessories, décor, ect.

I am starting to recognize what all the hype was about minimalism, it is all about progression and the change of mentality along the way. It’s going back to simplicity and realizing that’s all you ever needed to feel full; less things to distract you to rediscover what really makes you happy.

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Sometimes Getting Lost Is The Right Direction

I’d be lying if I told you that the travelling lifestyle is all, as my stepmother called it, “hippie flowers and butterflies.” We have our worries just like anyone else, our worries are simply much different, consisting of where we will sleep tonight, the cheapest option for gas and finding the right directions.

After driving about 30 minutes in the wrong direction, we had to turn around and retrack our path. For any of you who do not know, we do not have a phone plan, we rely entirely on maps, which normally is not an issue, but yesterday it was.

We found ourselves very frustrated with the waste of precious time and gas money. It was difficult to stay positive throughout the situation, until we began to realize that everything happens for a reason, we just needed to wait for what that reason was.

When we reached McKenzie Highway, the sun began to set and we kept our eyes out for a place to camp for the night. We found ourselves parked in an empty lot off the side of the highway, right next to McKenzie River. We may have paid at least $40 a night to camp in a place like this anywhere else.

We took a moment to settle down, knowing that though we may not have reached Tilliwiger Hot Springs that day, we met our own personal nook of wilderness to slow down for a bit from all the driving and directions that we would not have experienced otherwise.

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The lesson we took away from this was that we may reach situations that go wrong in the future, a wrong turn, a wrong decision; but to keep in mind that everything is meant to happen for a reason, even if it appears as a mistake.

Right next to this crystal blue river was an amazing way to wake up the next morning and continue on to 126 towards Tilliwiger Hot Springs and Tamolich Falls.

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Limiting Our Things For Limited Spaces

Anyone who walked into our home would definitely think that we didn’t have many things. Within the last few months we have been selling so much and I felt quite minimalistic. But when we officially started packing all of our things, we made the decision to rent a U Haul because we weren’t going to have enough space, I realized I really had a ways to go before considering myself a true minimalist.

We thought this U Haul would have plenty of space, but after an hour or so of loading, we began noticing that we would need to fill the bed of the truck as well, and that was still pushing it for space.

Some things were going with to be sold at a family members yard sale, but this was still in our home. We were on a time crunch and running out of space, we found ourselves simply throwing away the things that would have trouble fitting. Which made me question it’s worth to me in the first place and why I ever thought that I needed it.

To me, this was a big eye opener in my life. Why were all these things necessary? After getting rid of it all, I couldn’t remember why I ever needed it and I felt so nice to let it go. This really hit me as beautiful feeling that I needed to share, so that I may inspire someone to challenge themselves to do the same and ask themselves the same questions.

Even when we started moving our things into the R. V, we threw away and sent even more things to yard sales.

More than half of our previously owned worldly possessions are no longer a part of our lives, and it makes me feel so free of clutter. It feels good to know that everything I own, I treasure.

 

Clearly, when you are moving into a space that doesn’t fit all the things you have, you have no choice but to get rid of things; but if this is not the case for you, you could try multiple other things to simplify your belongings.

Something I would suggest is to get rid of one thing a day. I don’t mean tossing out your shirt with a stain or your overused toothbrush, I mean things you come by in your everyday life that you notice you never use.

It may be easier at first, but doing it for a month or two will lead to ridding so many items from your life and forgetting you ever owned them.