Frustration and anger are natural human emotions that can sometimes get the best of us. We’ve all been behind a slow driver, someone who doesn’t use a turn signal, someone who cuts us off and other situations that can make us yell the occasional bad word. However, if you’re a truck driver, dealing with road rage and trying to prevent it is important.
Truckers spend days on end driving, and it isn’t healthy or enjoyable to be screaming and mad at every driver when these aggravating situations happen. Trucker road rage can cause a great amount of stress, which is not healthy nor enjoyable. It can cause danger to yourself and other drivers around you because you lose concentration.
There are always going to be times where you get frustrated with other drivers, you’re only human. But try to use these tips to help subside the frustration and anger on the road.
Managing Road Rage: How to Keep Your Cool
1. Be Prepared
You already know not every driver on the road is perfect. If they were, there would never be any accidents and you’d never experience road rage in the first place.
To avoid trucker road rage, you need to lower your expectations a little. You know that people are going to cut you off sometimes, so be prepared when it happens.
Tell yourself, “I expected this to happen.” By lowering your expectations, you won’t be as angry when someone messes up.
No only do you need to be realistic about other drivers making mistakes, you need to be realistic about road conditions and travel times. Don’t think you’re going to get to your destination right at the exact time the GPS tells you that you’ll arrive. You’ll go through your trucking career being very disappointed.
2. Everyone Makes Mistakes
Truck drivers would know more than anyone, something can go wrong when you’re driving in a matter of seconds. Understand that it’s the same for everyone else on the road too.
The person who didn’t use their blinker might be a mother with a screaming baby in the back seat. Or maybe it’s an elderly person who doesn’t usually drive at night and has to go a little slower than usual.
Just remember that the person in the car is human and they make mistakes too. What if it was your wife, daughter or parent? Wouldn’t you want other drivers to be nice to them?
3. Time Doesn’t Equal Money
For most truck drivers, the money you make is based on the miles you travel, not on time. So, if you lose time on the road, technically it isn’t costing you money. You’ll end up making the same amount. So take your time and don’t get frustrated by hold ups along the way. It’s not worth your energy.
4. You’re Not In Control
I know you wish you could, but you can’t control other drivers. What you can control though is how you react to other drivers though. A simple method to try to control your stress and anger would be the classic deep breathing. Slowly inhale and slowly exhale, ten times to calm yourself down and get control of your emotions. This way you won’t be the one slamming your hands on your steering wheel and raising your blood pressure.
5. Go Slow
Trucker road rage can be avoided by going a bit slower than the flow of traffic. It has been recommended by other drivers out there to go about three miles per hour slower than everyone else, especially in a heavy traffic situation like rush hour.
Not only does this avoid frustration, it keeps the roads safe. Going a little slower will give you the breathing room to let cars get in front of you instead of them cutting you off.
6. Stay Busy
Keeping yourself busy or entertained is a good way to stay relaxed and calm. We don’t mean unsafe activities like reading a book or magazine, but you can keep your mind busy and your eyes on the road by listening to music or podcasts.
With podcasts increasing in popularity, there are tons of options that can keep you listening, and calm, while you’re on the road. If you don’t like podcasts, here’s a playlist of the best trucking songs.
It’s important to remember that this is your job, and therefore your life. You want to be happy on the road and you can’t enjoy it if you’re constantly battling road rage.
7. We Can Help
Just like we can provide you with some of the best ways to avoid trucker road rage, we can help you choose the best freight factoring company here too.