5 Tips for Managing Stress While On The Road
Driving an 18-wheeler for days or weeks at a time definitely has its perks. But it can also be stressful at times. New and experienced drivers should take a proactive approach to managing stress and take advantage of the following tips.
1. Sleep on it.
It’s amazing how a good night’s sleep can boost mood and energy levels, and lower stress levels. Though there are regulations for how much sleep truck drivers are required to have each night, if you find yourself feeling tired and worn out, take an extra hour or two to regain your strength.
2. Clear your mind.
Truck drivers have nothing but time to think and ponder — and ruminate on life’s challenges. If you find yourself fixating on difficult circumstances, turn on an audiobook or podcast to help clear your mind. There is much to learn and explore — from true crime and history, to current events and niche topics. You could also turn on your favorite tunes and sing along (don’t worry, no one else will hear).
3. Take the time to prepare.
Truck drivers have deadlines just like workers in other industries. But rushing through preparation can lead to further delays and setbacks. Before hitting the road, take the time to plan your route, pack healthy meals, and inspect your truck. Once you’re well on your way, give yourself regular breaks to stretch your legs, get some exercise, breathe deeply, and release any tension or stress.
4. Eat healthy.
It’s no secret that diet affects our health, energy, and mood. If you find yourself purchasing fast food at truck stops, bingeing on high-sodium snacks, and drinking gallons of coffee a day, then you need to do a complete stop and make a 180. Go to a grocery store and purchase fruits, vegetables, nuts, and nutritious snacks. Stock your fridge with prepped meals that can be easily heated up and enjoyed.
5. Practice gratitude.
Driving around the country is a dream come true for many truck drivers. No matter how long you’ve been a truck driver, there’s much to be grateful for. Take some time to call family and friends and discuss the good things worth celebrating. A little gratitude can go a long way.