Before Your Family Adventures, Ask Yourself These Questions (Episode 294)
What type of travel really excites you? Is it to go international? We thought that's what we wanted... And yet...have you ever considered road trip for your family?
We've already gone over what to do when you can't afford a vacation, so now...let's talk about some different ways you can actually take adventures beyond your own home. What does that look like?
For us, we dreamed of international travel. I had some great ideas for what we would do. Yet the reality of our desires put us in a conflict - we love to travel, yet we love our pets. And lugging 1 dog, 2 cats and five snakes around different countries isn't quite the best option for us in this season.
When we started our adventures, we couldn't afford flights - we did a road trip to see friends in Canada with our young daughters, and had a blast. We opened up a little more to the idea of a road trip here in the US. And then, fast forward several years and another child later, and we spent a full month in Costa Rica. We came back seriously considering an international move.
And then...those pets again. While we didn't have as many back then, we still had a dog, and we started realizing how much of our own country we hadn't yet seen. And that started some epic travels across our own country that resulted in us seeing all 48 states, and still RVing now seven years later.
In this podcast episode, we discuss the acronym we use in my course, 90 Day Family Road Trip. While it directly applies to RVing specifically, it also can be relevant to travel in general. It's about getting intentional before you head out with everyone being on the same page.
Put a Date on It
The first thing to address - is now the time? We always say,
"It'll always remain 'one day'
until you put a date on it."
If you're dreaming of a trip, you have to put a date on it! We've talked before about creating a "no excuses" lifestyle. What is truly holding you back from pursuing a trip you've dreamed of?
5 Questions to Ask:
I love my friend Holly's emails, and the one I opened up today fit so beautifully with our podcast focus. I know she just came back from a big winter road trip adventure, where she tent camps along the way, and does the majority on her own.
She was reminded of the truth - travel is to add to your life; not escape from it. Your problems will follow you. The same life lessons will continue to show up no matter where you are, until you learn the lesson.
As she was looking over how she got to where she is now, willing to travel and learn as she grows, she boiled it down to these key questions to ask yourself to ensure this is the best next step in the moment.
FIVE QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN MAKING IMPORTANT LIFE DECISIONS:
- How do I want to live my days? What does a perfect day look like?
- What am I running from? Which of those things are most likely to follow me wherever I go?
- What am I running toward? What do I truly want? What do I most value in life?
- If there were no barriers to my dreams (fear, failure, finances, friends, family, etc.), what would my best life look like five to 10 years from now?
- Knowing these things about myself, how will I live differently this year?
She's shared a lot about her adventure over in her Instastories, so check her out there.
Our Family Road Trip
So we asked ourselves these questions. We made it a point that we weren't running from stress or pain; we were simply intentionally running toward joy and ease. We started creating more of it in our lives vs. hoping it would show up.
We started dreaming of those words that encompassed our family vision, and how we wanted to live differently in the coming years.
Our family road trip started with a us setting goals, getting to the root of the feeling behind the goal, and getting real with the fact that "one day" will always remain elusive unless we put a date on it.
So we did, and we launched, and we haven't looked back. It's been a blast, even if it's not always been rainbows and unicorns. There are ups and downs of life on the road, just like any other. And the biggest thing that keeps us sane is living a life with intention vs. simply reacting to what comes our way.
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Clearly laying out expectations, discussing our "why", and knowing personality styles have been the three most powerful things to make this lifestyle work for us...and these three things are the same tools you can use for your own life. It's not about one right way to do things.
You may have other desires that don't include RV travel. Think about what you want to do and where you want to go in life - as an individual, and as a family. What can you start to create together? Can you focus on getting to the root of why, knowing yourself and your loved ones well, and clearly communicate expectations?
We opted to start with a 90 Day Family Road Trip.
90 Day Family Road Trip
Our RV adventures started with 90 days for us to really test this out and see how it would work for us. Why 90 days? Well, have you ever tried something out for 90 days? It's amazing what it does to break through what you think you can accomplish, get past that "honeymoon phase" and really take a good look at whether this is a fit for you and your family.
After 90 days, you've broken through any perceived glass ceiling on your ability to live in an RV for longer than a vacation. After 90 days, there is no doubt you've experienced not only some of the great "ups" of full-time RVing, but you've also experienced some "downs" - and you're way more educated in this decision for something longer-term.
Thus 90 Day Family Road Trip was born to really break down the questions to ask yourself before you hit the road.
Since we've been traveling as the @FieldTripGypsies, we already had the educational theme for our unschooling family. So we thought we'd add another great thing with school beyond field trips, and that's RECESS! Here is a quick summary of the acronym we cover in that course:
- R - Ride (What type of RV is best for your family)?
- E - Expectations (What is your "why"? What does an ideal day look like for you?)
- C - Choose your own adventure (How to plan your path)
- E - Expenses (what is your exit strategy, and how will you create income on the road?)
- S - Set-up (Setting up and taking down camp is a process - we'll show you how to make it happen smoothly)
- S - Satisfaction (little tips and tricks to make it even easier, like what memberships give you what, travel hacks, and more!)
The bottom line is this. You can have the best laid plans; the perfect RV, your road trip mapped out, and campgrounds booked...but if you aren't on the same page as a family, you're at risk for a miserable experience. Living in close quarters allows us little wiggle room to hide from our problems - the more you all can be on the same page and clearly communicate, the better.
Our Message to you:
When is your "one day" really going to happen? What if RVing isn't your jam? Let's go back to the acronym again as it may apply for you -
- R - Ride- How are you going to get around for travel? Are you going to drive? Fly? Is it a cruise or something else by boat? Maybe you're going to bounce around with AirBnBs... what exactly are the logistics of where you will stay and how you will get there?
- E - Expectations- Are you clear on what your overall family vision is for the trip? Not just what YOU hope to get out of it, but listening to the dreams and desires of everyone going with you? Unspoken expectations lead to premeditated resentment. Don't just assume your family knows what you're dreaming of - get it out in the open and talk about it.
- C - Choose your own adventure- What does a trip look like for you? There are many ideas for adventure that may even be right outside your own doorstep. Here are some out of the box vacation ideas for you.
- E - Expenses- How are you going to pay for your party? There are creative ways to leverage assets you have while you are traveling, and there is building up that nest egg for the epic trip you've dreamed of. How are you preparing now for the expenses that may be a part of this?
- S - Setup logistics- There are systems and routines to keep things going smoothly as you travel. How are you going to keep your sanity? Maybe it's booking things ahead to eliminate decision fatigue. Maybe it's having a few key anchors, or scheduling in down time throughout your travels without every second booked.
- S - Satisfaction- And again, go back to your why - what is important about this trip, and what do you hope to accomplish? Is it togetherness? Soaking in the present moment? The more you are clear on what the goal is, the more you can stay aligned. So, if you're all in agreement that you want a vacation with ease, adding in a lot of logistics to a jam-packed schedule doesn't really align with that.
Search for ways to get yourself out of your routine so you can begin to find more opportunities, even before you take a trip. Pay attention to the different personality styles at home, and how each person may navigate a transition to a big trip. Sometimes easing into things is better, and it starts with creating that vacation mindset we talked about last week on the podcast.
Some resources to dig deeper...
- How To Travel When You Can’t Afford To
- Out of the Box Creative Income Ideas
- Travel To A Life You Don’t Want To Escape From
- Top Travel Items Gift Guide
- Fulltime RV Living Family – Tour our tiny home!
- Out of the Box Income Ideas
- RV Living with Kids (guest post)
- Our Travel Story (Episode 001)
- Travel Lessons Learned (Episode 103)
- Income Ideas for Nomad Families (Episode 78)
- But What About Socialization for My Family on the Road? (Episode 75)
- Income Ideas for Nomad Families (Episode 78)
- 48 States! And, Some Very Special Guests (Episode 69)
- How to keep your sanity on Travel Days (Episode 54)
- Less Stuff, More Fluff! (Episode 55)
- How Are You Going To Pay For Your Party? (Episode 53)
- When Adventures Go Awry (Episode 51)
- Adventure is a Mindset (Episode 52)
- Toddlers, Transportation and Long Trips (Episode 50)
- Family Dreams – Seek Adventure Together! (Episode 48)
- Family Road Trip and More – No Excuses (Episode 38)
Your Weekly Challenge:
What is it you really want to do as a family? What is holding you back? Have you all discussed it together, or is a dream lying in the heads of some and not the others?
What is truly important to you? Do you have this added into your life? If not...why?
Life may look different for you than it does us. That's a given - you're different people!! So don't just watch or listen to our story; create your own. What type of life do you want to live? And if you aren't doing it already...what's still holding you back?
Let me know where you're stuck. It may be we've been through it, or know some tools to walk you through it yourself. Remember, we all have different gifts we bring to the table. That's how the uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us! Namaste.