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3 Powerful Steps on How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality

| Updated Mar 10, 2021

When it comes to how to make the RV Lifestyle a reality, it's as simple a matter as deciding “I will.”

Not “someday.” Not “I hope.”

I will.

That's what our guests on this week's podcast said. And did.

And today, Lisa Maas and her husband Dr. Gary Daniel, are traveling the nation in a Class C motorhome, experiencing all the joys and fulfillment that comes from living out their passions to help others, while at the same time working remotely as they explore the country.

You can listen to our RV Podcast Interview with them in the player below. Or keep scrolling down for a transcript.

As the couple approached their retirement years, they wondered what to do.

Both agreed that traveling in their RV was at the top of the list. But they wanted more than just travel. They wanted purpose.

Dr. Gary is a longtime behavioral psychologist. He now practices from the road, working remotely and helping to motivate others to find their passions and purposes, often by embracing the RV Lifestyle.

Lisa – wait for it!- has become a Professional Archer.

She was a realtor and had a corporate job. Now, in her late 50s she plans to crisscross the country attending archery tournaments, competing for prize money, and selling a new line of clothing and archery gear she developed that is aimed just for women.

The process they followed and the process they recommend to others has three simple but powerful steps.

Step 1 – Count the Cost

Don't go into this naive. Do your research. If you are planning to go full-time, realize that the RV Lifestyle is not cheap. It costs much more than many suggest and it takes emotional maturity to adapt to a life constantly on the move and away from family and traditional support systems.

Step 2 – Make a decision

Once you conclude you can afford it, don't waste time overthinking about it. Decide. Buy the RV. Make your travel plans. Book those reservations. Or don't. But decide and don't look back. If it doesn't work out, you can return to your previous life, the richer for the experience. Time moves very fast. Go for it.

Step 3 – Stop with the what-ifs

Don't hope this will work out. Say to your selves I will. I can. The power of positive affirmation is huge. 

How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality – Lisa and Gary's Interview

Here's an edited transcript of our interview with Lisa and Gary:

3 Powerful Steps on How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality 1

Mike Wendland: Well, joining us now from Twin Falls, Idaho are Lisa and Gary, and we are delighted to have you guys on the program this week. How are you? ,

Dr. Gary Daniel: To be any better. Mike you'd have to have two of us.

Mike Wendland: Well, I do have two of you, so I'm pretty excited. There are so many people who think they're going to retire, but you're not really quite ready to give all that up, but you almost feel a little guilty and just throwing yourselves into the party lifestyle of constantly vacationing. But we all need purpose. That's the way Jennifer and I like to tell people, and I think we can tell everybody through your story and particularly through your expertise, Dr. Gary.

Lisa tell us your background. And then Gary we'll get into yours and, and then we'll get into the meat of this operation, which everybody wants to hear about how to really make the RV lifestyle fulfilling and everything you'd hoped it would be. And then some, so Lisa talk, start off with your story.

How Lisa and Gary came to the RV Lifestyle

Lisa Maas: Okay, thank you first for having us.

I've had a really interesting life and an interesting story. I started out in the travel business after I graduated from college and traveled all over the United States and Canada as a guide and owning a travel agency. And then I retired from that. I didn't really want to travel out of a suitcase anymore and hotels and moved to Hawaii.

I had never been there. I went there sight unseen and got into the real estate industry and became quite successful, then eventually owning my own agency. I did that for 15 years and eventually moved to the West coast. I had a few little health challenges that I wanted to solve and. now here I am getting into the RV Lifestyle and working as a, eventually a Professional Archer.

Mike Wendland: Well, you kind of gave him my big secret away and we'll come back to that. Everybody's going to say, what did she say? She's an Archer, but we'll come back to that in a minute. Stay tuned folks. And Dr. Gary, how about your story?

How did you guys meet how long you've been married? Give us a little background on you.

Dr. Gary Daniel: Well, we, you know, who knows how it actually works, but I've been in a motivational psychology business for a long time and wanted a change in lifestyle. Because of working so hard for so long, I wanted to do something much different.

And I've always been fascinated with buying a motor home and doing a little bit of traveling. I'm a pilot, you know, helicopter and airplanes. And I got to meet a lot of people, but I was always working all the time. And so I traveled, but I never got to see anything.

And Lisa and I met through a friend of mine who's a chiropractor and they introduced us and we just hit it off. And I came to this harebrained idea of buying a motor home and doing some traveling and going full time. And of course, Lisa didn't want any part of it.

And she just looked at me like I was out of my mind. And said, there is just no way we can do that. And we had all this stuff to get rid of. And so we went through a process of eliminating a lot of possessions and a lot of things that we thought we were attached to. And we weren't.

And finally, we went and looked.  I studied about motorhomes. I'd watched you Mike, a lot. You helped influence us. Looked at all of them and zeroed in on this one (a Leisure Travel Vans Unity FX). Even though it's a little spendy for entry-level. But I agree with you, the quality's there.

So we put the deposit down and thought, we're going to have it done in about five months and it ended u being almost a little over a year later. But we finally got it. But in the interim, Lisa is now gung ho. She said, I can do this full time, but we're part-time working. Full-time RV.

Chasing the dream of the RV Lifestyle

But we realized a lot of other people out there doing the same kind of transitioning and in the business I'm in, I find myself able to help people stressed out about how do you make a living doing this? How do you cashflow it? How do you keep the ball rolling?

The stress of doing this is a lot different than we thought it would be. It's fun, but yet it's a lot of work. And the things I appreciate about your program is you guys are straight up about all of that and it looks like the romantic part is great.

However, there is a lot of work to it, a lot of planning

Mike Wendland:  I want to get now back to that line that Lisa just told us here you are Lisa. You are a travel agent. You are in real estate and now let's go into some detail. How do you make your living Lisa?

Lisa Maas: Well, right now I'm in between, I'm still working off of some residual that I had in the real estate world. And I also am a human design analyst.

Lisa's Dream: Becoming a Professional Archer

3 Powerful Steps on How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality 2
Lisa's dream of becoming a professional archer and a full-time RVer has come true

So I work with mostly women clients to help them with their relationships, with their businesses on how to develop their businesses and who to hire small businesses. So I do that part-time, but for the most part, I'm putting all my energy and effort into becoming a Professional Archer. So I train every day.

I thought it'd be a lot easier. I do have talent for it. However, it's like golf, every movement counts now. And so I just got into it.

Mike Wendland: I've never met a Professional Archer before. I've never heard of an RVer doing this. How did this come about? Was this new? Were you an Archer all your life?

Lisa Maas: No, my dad was a baseball player, so I do have some traits in my DNA on that part of it. But we were just sitting around one night talking and I shot arrows at camp when I was a kid and I liked it and COVID had started and I wanted to do something different and I just went to Amazon and bought a bow. I had no idea what I was doing.

I ended up with a kid's bow. I didn't know. So I started out with a kid's bow and just found I loved it. It's fun. Any age can do it. And that's my inspiration too. If you're four years old or 104, you can shoot a bow.

Mike Wendland: So how does one earn a living as a professional archer?

Lisa Maas: It's amazing how many tournaments and how many people are actually in the archery world. It's like golf, although it's, it's an Olympic sport. So there are lots of tournaments. The tournament's all pay money at a certain point. You know, you have to get to a certain category to compete. There are different categories, over 50, professional, children.

And I decided to get into it. I saw a little niche that there's not a lot for women as far as accessories. There's their quiver, which you carry the arrows in. On a belt, with maybe a vest. And so I'm working on the quiver and redesigning it right now. I have a gentleman in Italy designing a tech pack.

And then I have a company and factory out of New York that will produce them. And so that's how I see myself in this career, going from tournament to tournament, promoting the bow gear accessories.

Gary's Dream: Helping others Turn their Dreams to reality

3 Powerful Steps on How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality 3
Gary and Lisa have made their RV Lifestyle dream a reality

Mike Wendland: And Dr. Gary, how did your background end up influencing Lisa in this decision? 

Dr. Gary Daniel: Well, Lisa is a real creative individual. She's also a pretty good athlete. I mean It just the way she looks, the way she moves, she's into exercise. She's taken really good care of herself.

She's, she's been really wanting to be in a place where she can empower women. She sees women that from ages 50 on up kind of give up and don't think they can do anything. And she's proven that to be wrong.

And she even did some ax throwing the other day, which kind of was shocking to me. It's getting more terrifying to be with her all the time with these weapons. So she's the pistol-packing, arrow-shooting, ax-throwing woman there.

The point of it is she wants to empower women. And she is an influencer.

The women that are in archery that she's around now are watching her. And she's developed this company called Bow Gear, which is going to not only develop equipment but be designed for women. So they don't look like men out there, but also give some style, some fun, give it some bling.

So, how I fold into it? I'm a motivational psychologist. I've helped coach her along the way. As far as the business aspect of it, she's got some professional coaches working with her on her shooting and she's developing that very quickly, but she wants to get out there in front of women and people and show that you don't have to quit when you're 60 and you can keep going.

And that life kind of starts right there rather than ends. 

How others can make the RV Lifestyle a Reality

Mike Wendland: Now you have been in motivational psychology, as you said for many, many years now, how does the RV lifestyle play into that? 

Give some advice on finding that passion and enhancing that RV lifestyle. And the rest of your life as well.

Dr. Gary Daniel: Well, the thing that I've, you know, I've done it myself.

I was always going to be one of these days and one of these days I'm going to do this someday. We can do that. And I remember with my mother, my dad left when I was 12. So my mom kind of raised us and she worked really hard and I would remember going places and doing things. My mom would always say, well, we'll catch it on the way back.

And I saw her diverting her life because she had to work. To raise us kids. And I see other people doing the same thing. They're one of these days they're going to buy that pickup. One of these days, they're going to buy that plane. One of these days, we're going to go on that vacation. But right now we have to work.

And I decided that when I was in this business, I dealt with a lot of people that have this going on all the time when what's happening is that life is going by and they're missing the whole thing. And life is short. 

And when you get to be my age, you realize how short it is.

So I realized that there's a lot of people like me and a lot of people like you and Lisa that really got to get reframed in the way they look at their life.

Find the passion in your life that fuels your dream

And they have to find passion in something. iI's time to go buy the RV. You have to decide whether to pull the trigger or not.

Otherwise, it may never happen. So I'm about helping people make that decision. 

Mike Wendland: Give us some examples and maybe Lisa, how Gary helped you with your decision to seize that passion you have, and you want to impact other women. And this is a great sport for women as well. Give us a couple of touchpoints that that would help people.

Lisa Maas: When I turned 50 a few years ago – I'm pushing 60 now – I did a collage and I wanted a couple to put in my collage 50 year old couples.

And I went on the Internet for pictures and it was all these old gray-haired people that had retired that looked like they were going into the grave. And then I put 48 year old couples and it was young couples with teenage kids. And I feel like the media at times in our society says as you age, you're washed up. There's nothing left for you.

I've just proven that that's not true at all. You can do and be whatever you want to do and be if you have the passion. And of course, you've got to have a little skill and motivation to go that route, but Gary really helped me with that saying, you can do this,

Age is not a barrier to realizing your dreams

There's a whole set of people that are my age and older that are really great archers and it builds confidence. It builds focus. There's a lot of inspiration there. And Gary just showed me that you can do and I can. It's a journey. It's not something you learn overnight. That's a skill that's learned over time.

But I felt like I can do this and I am doing it.

Mike Wendland: Don't you think it's important, Gary, to have something that you can always get better at?

Dr. Gary Daniel: Absolutely. And I, you know, Mike, that's a good point and it's like RVing. I remember one of your programs. You said, we, you know, you never were an expert at this. There's always something gonna happen and you're going to learn something someday and everybody's still learning.

People always used to come to me and say, well, when am I going to be done (with counseling)? How many sessions does it take? And I laugh at them and say, well, you're never going to be done.

I mean, you and I might work together for 10 hours or so, but you're going to be learning until you're in the grave. And if you're not, there's something wrong. Push, push, push, always be striving to learn something new, and never be afraid. Fear is all in the imagination. Anybody can do anything if they choose to.

Try the RV Lifestyle on for size

Mike Wendland: I used to always say well, what's the worst thing that could happen to you? So the RV Lifestyle doesn't work out. So now you don't have to think about it again.

Now it's easy when we're talking about, you know, people who have the resources to live this. But it costs money.

And it costs more money than most people think to do the RV lifestyle comfortably. But for those who want to earn a living from the road, want to find a way that they can enjoy this lifestyle, but support themselves, where does that thought process start? 

Dr. Gary Daniel: Well, what I've learned is that first of all, there's one word you gotta think about and you gotta do it and it's called decide. I want to do something different. I want to decide to do this and then get focused on it and do it.

But one of the big things people have to do is understand that the biggest enemy they've got, and this sounds cliche-ish is themselves and the way they think about things. 

A lot of people think that it's going to be cheaper than owning a house. It's not. It's got a whole new set of problems and challenges with it that aren't really problems. But as new things you have to learn, you have to be willing to learn again, but that keeps you young.

Keep learning new things

You always have to be willing to learn new stuff. And with the RV, it's the same thing. And with life, it's the same thing. We're in an economy right now that everybody's going to have to learn to take care of themselves a little bit better now.

And now's the time for people, no matter what your career was, to find something that makes you feel good. Serve other people. Find something that serves another person in a positive way, and the money will follow you to that. It will work. 

Lisa's proving it right now.

Lisa Maas: To add one thing to that:  Decide. Yes. However, also realize that life is really short. It's really short. We're all going to die. That's one thing we all have in common and I hear people all the time, putting it off, putting it off, putting it off.

Decide. Then do.

And once you decide to do it, then I hate to use the word universe, but the power is around us. It pushes us for it. And there's always a way to do it. If you decide that's what you want to do and have focus like Napoleon, you know, he was going to win, just focus and it happens.

Mike Wendland: This last year for many was a lost year.

I mean, and I wonder how big of a factor that is in this RV Boom we're now seeing, is that people realize I lost pretty much a year of relationships, of being fulfilled, of seeing new things.

What would you say as we wrap this up? About the lessons we all learned in this year of pause that we can apply going forward.

Lisa Maas: People should look at their life and what really matters to them.

Dr. Gary Daniel: I find the same thing. People are used to procrastinating. How you find the quality of life? Have time to use? So you enjoy your life. More people right now through the COVID thing have discovered that, wow, we did lose a year, but like with Lisa and I, we decided early on with that, we aren't going to lose anything.

We're going to do life. I find that if we can focus on what we want and how we want to do it, rather than what we don't want, we're going to be drawn to the things we want. So, and it's also just about the way we talk to ourself, it's using those words and how we use them. And anytime we say can't the brain shuts down and it decides we can't,

If we say we can and we will, and we're going to attempt it, we will. 

Mike Wendland: You guys have been delightful. I think that is very helpful.  I'm going to give you a chance to give a quick plug. You've got a great YouTube channel, Dr. Gary. Straight talk. I watched a couple of those videos. You don't mince words. You tell it exactly as it is. And, and people need to hear it tell them how they can find you. And

Dr. Gary Daniel: Well, it's really DrGary.TV takes you right to that YouTube channel. There's a lot of people that are confused about life. They're getting depressed. They don't know what to do. Those are the people I like to talk to.

They want to be upwardly-mobile still, no matter what their age, they want to live their life. And they want to feel good about themselves. I'm willing to work with any of these people. All I gotta do is give me a call. We'll figure out what I can do to help them. And I've been doing it for a long time.

So the one thing that we don't tolerate is somebody says they can't do it. There's always a way there's always a way to do it, leave it.

Mike Wendland: Okay guys, thank you so much. 


Looking for more inspiration and motivation for RV Adventure?

3 Powerful Steps on How to Make the RV Lifestyle a Reality 4

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Mike Wendland

Published on 2021-03-10

Mike Wendland is a multiple Emmy-award-winning Journalist, Podcaster, YouTuber, and Blogger, who has traveled with his wife, Jennifer, all over North America in an RV, sharing adventures and reviewing RV, Camping, Outdoor, Travel and Tech Gear for the past 12 years. They are leading industry experts in RV living and have written 18 travel books.

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