The wide-open roads can be freeing and peaceful. With congestion and careless drivers, however, the roads can become sources of rage. Whenever you feel road rage creeping up on you, here’s what you can do to calm your anger and avoid letting the rage take over.
5 Helpful Tips for Avoiding Road Rage
- Leave a little early whenever you can: Being late is a stressor for any drivers, especially truck drivers whose income can depend on timely deliveries. So, whenever you’re preparing for a trip or the next leg of your trip, always do your best to leave a little earlier than schedule. You never know what the roads may bring, and being a little early can give you the leeway you need to keep your cool whenever the unexpected arises—and whenever a rage-triggering moment happens on the road.
- Keep your favorite tunes on hand: Music can be a good friend on the road. It can keep you calm and in good spirits. It can also relax your muscles, enhance alertness, and promote more optimistic and positive feelings about life.1 That makes it a great resource whenever things get stressful as you drive an 18-wheeler.
- Take deep breaths and take a moment to think: Deep breaths can be incredibly soothing, giving more oxygen to the brain and body. That can relax the brain and muscles, giving you a moment to step back from an escalating situation and gain some essential perspective. So, whenever start feeling road rage, make it a practice to take 5 to 10 deep breaths, holding in the inhalation for a moment or two before slowly exhaling. This practice can be as physically relaxing as it is mentally relaxing.
- Safely pull off the road: Disengage from situations that are triggering road rage by immediately getting off the road, either pulling onto the shoulder (when safe), turning on to a different street, or taking an exit. If you take yourself out of the maddening situation, you can stop it from escalating right there.
- Always remember that rage can be contagious: In other words, you’re not necessarily the only one who may be enraged when things get stressful on the roads. You never know how bad someone else’s road rage maybe—or what they may do in any given moment when they’re blinded by rage. And the revenge you or anyone may want in a flash of road rage is never worth the lifelong pain and losses you and others may suffer for it.
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1: According to this research
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