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Dealing with Stress on the Road

driving while being irritatedDo you feel aggravated when you drive? Irritated? Maybe you even feel as though the next person who cuts you off is going to get a piece of your mind. It’s not unusual for people to feel stressed out while they are driving, but that stress could be the reason you get into an accident. Here are a few stressful situations you may encounter and what you can do to keep yourself calm the next time you slip behind the wheel.

1. Construction

No one likes running into construction. Let’s face it: it slows things down. Unfortunately, spring is known as orange barrel season throughout the country, and that construction often carries long into the summer.

The easiest way to avoid this stress is to avoid the construction. Keep an eye on the local traffic reports before you leave for work, and know where the construction is taking place. If you know that there is construction on your way to work, map an alternate route or leave early if it can’t be avoided.

2. Rush Hour Merging

Merging onto a congested highway is enough to cause anyone’s blood pressure to rise. If you aren’t entirely experienced with highway driving, experts suggest practicing merging when traffic isn’t so congested. This way, you will be confident in your abilities and feel less stressed when bumpers are riding more closely together.

3. You Get Lost

Getting lost while driving brings about a feeling of helplessness. At times, it may even be a bit frightening. Instead of driving on and on until you finally figure out where you are going, pull over and take a breath. Calm your nerves, pull out your GPS and re-calculate your route.

4. Stuck at a Train Crossing

Some trains virtually fly by. Others seem like they may stretch all the way to the neighboring state. If you are stuck at a train crossing watching railroad cars that seem like they are never going to end, don’t get frustrated. If you can turn around safely, you have that option. If you choose to stay put, work out your plan for the day in your head. Take a moment for a few deep, calming breaths. Instead of getting angry, enjoy the few minutes extra that you have to yourself.

5. Backseat Drivers

A backseat driver may be behind you, or they may be sitting right beside you. If the passenger in your car insists on telling you how to drive, the most appropriate response is no response at all. Engaging the person in an argument will only heighten your stress and encourage a fight. Instead, stay silent and hope that they will get the hint.

Stress behind the wheel can quickly turn ugly if you let it. Use the tips above to keep your blood pressure from rising. If you follow the tips, you could very well avoid an accident brought on by careless driving.

If you happen to be involved in a car accident in North Carolina, reach out to our team of experienced accident attorneys. We will review your case for free and advise you of your legal options. Call today to schedule your appointment.

Posted In: Car Accidents
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