Choosing to live full-time on the open road is easy. Overcoming the occasional RVing mishap is not. By following my best RV tip for full-timers you’ll have the greatest tool necessary for making it through the hard times: laughter.
Full-time RVing isn’t always as glamorous as it looks. Most days are terrific but even seasoned full-timers have days when they question the sanity of choosing such an unpredictable life. Murphy’s Law plays no favorites and everyone occasionally experiences the onslaught of RV-related assaults that cost money, time, and heartache. This happened to me last month when one of our trailer tires blew out on Interstate 35, just outside of Austin, TX.
While traveling at 65 miles per hour we hit an object that caused our tire to explode. Steady and confidently, Jim weaved us out of traffic and into the emergency lane.
With no way to exit the interstate, we sat on the narrow shoulder attempting to assess the dangerous situation. It was our second blowout in less than a year and my gut instinct was to cry and whine like a two-year-old. I wondered: “What the heck? Another blowout? Why? What is going on? Are we overweight? What’s wrong with our tires? Are they too old? Why us? Why us? What the ….”
Within seconds I stopped myself. Instead of diving down the dark hole of self-pity, I chose another way through this mishap: forced laughter.
I would never have believed that forced laughter would be the best RVer tip we would acquire over the last nine years, but it worked. We learned about the benefits of laughter from our friend Dave, who has a thriving “laughter yoga” following. Based on the teaching of Dr. Madan Kataria, aka “The Laughter Guru,” laughter yoga’s benefits include:
- Taking the edge off a bad day.
- Easing physical pain by releasing endorphins, forcing your brain to think about other things
- Helping you get through calamities by flipping off your panic switch.
The goal of laughter yoga is not to bend into a pretzel, but simply to laugh on purpose, anytime you want or need to. Studies prove laughter makes you feel good no matter what frame of mind you’re in at the moment.
- You can laugh with special guided techniques: It’s easy. Anyone can laugh for no reason without relying on humor, jokes, or comedy and one can feel the benefits on the very first session.
- It turns to real and contagious laughter: We initiate laughter as a body exercise in a group and with eye contact and childlike playfulness. It soon turns into real and contagious laughter.
- Oxygenates your body and brain: Laughter Yoga is a combination of deep breathing exercises from yoga and laughter exercises, which oxygenates our body and brain, making us feel more healthy and energetic.
If you are traveling with another person, laughing together can quickly prevent stressful situations from escalating into full-scale arguments. Try these laughter yoga exercises for couples the next time you and your partner start bickering. You’ll see how easy it is to retreat to that happier place and time when you both agreed to live together in a tiny tin can.
As you can see, the old saying “laughter is the best medicine” is so true. Laughing alone or with others during the inevitable detours in this lifestyle can save your sanity and keep the wheels turning toward more fun adventures on the open road.
Rene Agredano and her husband, Jim Nelson, became full-time RVers in 2007 and have been touring the country ever since. In her blog, Rene chronicles the ins and outs of the full-timing life and brings readers along to meet the fascinating people and amazing places they visit on the road. Her road trip adventures are chronicled in her blog at LiveWorkDream.com.