Relax Behind the Wheel with These Stress-Busting Tips
Perhaps someone is tailgating you on a country lane or maybe you’re arguing in a car park with another driver over a parking space or you might be stuck in a traffic jam on the way to an important meeting. The fact is, there’s so many sources of frustration when driving on UK roads that could lead to stress without you even realising.
Being stressed behind the wheel on Britain’s busy roads is a serious matter and something all drivers should be aware of and should not ignore.
Alarmingly, around 70% of motorists in the UK have confessed to losing their concentration whilst driving because they’re exhausted or feel highly strung or even worse, have got angry at a situation that’s occurred when out on the road.
When you jump into your vehicle in a stressed state-of-mind, you risk a worsening of how you’re feeling and this could lead to road rage. This puts you the driver, any passengers and other road users in danger.
According to motoring experts, driving when in an uncomfortable seating position, feeling tired or suffering from hunger pains can all lead to a change in mood and loss of concentration.
Staying calm and relaxed whilst driving on Britain’s extremely busy roads is a challenge, with roadworks here, there and everywhere, traffic jams and congestion to deal with almost every day of the week and don’t forget the potholes, some of which are big enough to do serious damage to a car… it’s no wonder so many drivers get worked up behind the wheel.
But despite all this, it is possible to remain calm at the wheel and to avoid conflict with other road users by simply following our Top 10 tips on how to reduce stress when driving – we hope they help!
Our Top 10 Tips To Reduce Stress When Driving:
1. Give Yourself More Time – before setting off on a journey, check the traffic conditions on your route and allow for more time just in case you hit traffic and possible delays. This way, you’ll stay calm and relaxed knowing you’ve given yourself extra time.
2. Stay Off The Horn – a car horn is there to use if you need to attract the attention of another driver to warn them of your presence. If someone uses their’s in anger, don’t react and simply let it go, it’s not worth it.
3. Adjust Your Driving Position – this tip might sound obvious but it’s often overlooked by drivers. Adjust your seat for a comfortable relaxed seating position and hold onto the steering wheel without gripping too tightly.
Don’t lean too far back in your seat, as this can cause neck and shoulder pain, as well as tingling in the fingers.
4. Switch Off Your Mobile Phone – one of the biggest distractions when driving is a mobile phone making noises, thus stopping you from concentrating on the road ahead.
Keep it in the glove box out of sight and either turn it off or set it to ‘do not disturb’.
5. Play Some Music – listening to music whilst driving can relax you and keep you calm. Apparently, the best style of music to listen to is pop music, as it’s easier on the driver’s ears compared to other genre’s.
6. Stay Away From Aggressive Drivers – if you notice another driver acting aggressively, don’t react – simply ignore them and let them stew in their car to themselves. Before you know it, they’ll have turned off the road and out of your way.
If you react, you don’t know where it may lead, so it’s better not to.
7. Must Your Drive? – when the roads are really busy and you need to make a journey, is it possible you can leave the car at home and use public transport instead?
You could be sat on a train, watching the world go by, relaxed and calm.
8. Keep A Safe Distance – try and drive with a safe distance between you and the vehicle in front. Staying a good distance away keeps you in control of any possible situation that may arise, such as the car in front of you breaking down or suddenly deciding to turn off without warning.
9. Take Deep Breaths – if you’re feeling stressed whilst behind the wheel, try taking deep breaths to help reduce your stress level. Do it around 5 to 10 times in a row to calm yourself down and reduce anxiety.
10. Take A Break – according to motoring experts, it’s recommended you pull over and take a break from driving every two hours for at least 15 minutes.
Make sure it’s a safe place to stop. Stretch your legs and have a drink/snacks to help calm yourself down before continuing on your journey.
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