At any given time during the day, you could be sharing the road with thousands of other motorists. Traffic congestion, commute times, careless drivers, and distracting passengers are just a few factors that can make your daily drive more stressful.
Whether you’re stuck in traffic or on a long road trip, here are some helpful tips for reducing stress:
Don’t Forget To Breathe
When most people are stressed, they forget to breathe and start to feel the tension rising in their shoulders, necks, and backs. It sounds simple (and maybe too good to be true) but if you are starting to feel stressed out in the car, take a deep breath.
As you breathe, think about happy things that make you feel calm. While it may be difficult to picture a secluded beach while you’re stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic, take a deep breath and give it a try.
Learn To Drive Near Large Trucks
Many motorists stress out about having to share the road with semi trucks. The best way to reduce that stress is to learn to drive near large trucks. While some truckers take risks and can be dangerous, most are just trying to do their job and keep their cool, too.
Keep your distance, stay out of blind spots, be patient, and learn to recognize when a trucker may be fatigued or distracted. Either way, always allow enough space and try to understand what kind of stress they may be feeling behind the wheel of their big rigs.
Give Yourself Some Extra Time
Want to reduce your stress immediately? Give yourself some extra time to get to your destination. Commute times may vary from day to day but running late can be a big stressor.
Even if it means cutting back on your binge watching the night before or getting up a half hour earlier in the morning, giving yourself an extra fifteen minutes to a half hour can do wonders for your stress.
Ask For Peace and Quiet
If you’re a parent, you may feel like a full-time chauffeur. Driving your kids back and forth to extra curricular activities often means that you’re likely to hear complaining, fighting, and Top 40 hits blaring from the stereo. It’s okay to admit that your most precious passengers can be a distraction.
As the driver and a responsible parent, you deserve to have some quiet time. Ask your children to stay quiet, especially while you’re driving in high traffic areas. Consider letting your kids “plug-in” to portable devices and hand out headphones to every passenger. While it may not be the bonding experience you were hoping for, it will keep your stress to a minimal.
Stay Hydrated and Well Fed
Eating on the go can be a big “no-no,” but if you’re going from place to place, you might not have time to stop for lunch. Rather than eating something from a fast food joint, pack some healthy snacks that you can eat while you’re parked.
It may be tempting to stay caffeinated and sugared up when you have a long day ahead of you but drinking water and eating good food will help you feel better, overall.