I have a lot of experience living in a van to travel, but I preferred more stable environments over the last two years. I can divide the places I slept at in two different categories: Airbnb rentals, and hostel dorm rooms.
Renting an entire Airbnb studio is the best option when I need to recharge my mental batteries. As an introvert, it frequently happens: I spent 80% of my time traveling by myself in small apartments.
It's not expensive as it sounds depending on where you stay at. Especially when you stay at the same place for a whole month, thanks to Airbnb's monthly discounts.
Sometimes however, I do feel the need as a young single male to mingle and live with other people. That's when I choose hostel dorm rooms. 200 Words a Day was born in a capsule hotel, for example.
Now, the thing with hostels is that it's everything but quiet, so I always buy a 24/7 coworking space membership in parallel. I just stay the whole day at the coworking space, visit the gym in the morning a few times a week, and come back at the hostel during the evening.
This is the best option when you feel social, and it's also the most cost-effective one. To give you an example, I'm moving to an hostel in two weeks after 4 months of alone time. It's less than $10 per day ($280 a month + free breakfast), $172 for a month of coworking (24/7, fixed seat), and $30 for monthly gym pass, which amounts to a grand total of $482. Not bad. That's less than the rent I'm paying this month.
Paradoxically, I think it's also the way to go if you're in a creative slump. Having your own place is so comfortable it can prevent you from getting things done. You just can't chill with a movie in your bed in an hostel, it simply looks weird when you're in a 12 bed dorm room. You either socialize or work or go for a walk. The social aspect is also a problem if you're constantly dragged into parties, but I think it's pretty easy to handle when you have the drive and discipline to make a living as a digital nomad.
In one sentence, live in hostels when you want to expand your comfort zone, and get your own studio when you need a more stable, peace-and-quiet kind of place.