What is road rage exactly? Well, in simple terms, road rage is determined as driving in an angry, aggressive or hostile way. Even the nicest person can become a victim of road rage when they’re behind the wheel. Little things might set you off and sometimes you can act on this rage, and then the results can become quite dangerous and even deadly.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has come out and said that most of the drivers who go from simply aggressive to actually road raging are younger men. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t capable of road rage. This is especially true when you are stressed out or frustrated while driving. Being stuck in traffic can add to your anxious or stressed out feelings and can manifest into road rage especially when it seems like another driver is intentionally acting aggressively.
Are you wondering if you’re one of those people who are susceptible to road rage? Consider a few questions. Do you sometimes find yourself trying to rush through yellow lights or breaking the speed limit just because you’re in a hurry? Do you use high beams and tailgate other drivers if you believe they’re going too slow? Are you a honker? Do you angrily try and communicate with other drivers?
This article is going to cover some strategies for keeping your road rage under control when you’re behind the wheel.
Listen to Some Relaxing Music While Driving
When you’re rocking out to some relaxing music, it may really help calm you down. This works especially well when you’re feeling frustrated or upset. Just focus on breathing and avoid thoughts that might trigger you.
Don’t Drive Too Tired
If you’re driving while tired, it can lead to irritability which can then manifest into road rage. Being sleepy while driving is dangerous no matter the circumstances, so make sure you’re getting enough rest.
Leave A Little Early
If you leave a little earlier than usual to get somewhere, you won’t get so frustrated with other drivers when they’re going slower than you’d like. After all, you’ll have more time to get to where you’re going.
Remember that You’re Sharing the Road
When you’re stuck in traffic, just keep in mind that everyone else is going through the exact same thing you are! You need to make sure you’re promoting practices that keep conditions ideal and safe for everyone.
Keep Your Distance
Road rage can sometimes manifest in tailgating. This is when you are driving too close to other cars. This can lead to collisions, both small and large. If you’ve been involved in one of these cases, you may want to visit The Millar Law Firm.
Keep In Mind of What Triggers You
Start keeping a list of what makes you uncomfortably angry on the road. Make notes of how long your anger lasts in those circumstances. When you recognize what’s triggering you, this can be the first step in letting go of those triggers.
Avoid Rude Gesturing and Even Eye Contact
When you begin acting out at other drivers, whether that’s by catching their eye and making a rude gesture, this might make the other driver respond in kind. Aggressive behavior can result and lead to more dangerous conditions. Also, when you’re focusing on other drivers, you’re not focusing nearly as much on the road.
Don’t Verbally Vent
You might think that shouting out your irritation is cathartic, but in reality, it can actually lead to an increase of upset feelings, anxiety, frustration and ultimately danger.
Have Something Soothing To Look At
Though you want to avoid placing them in a position that obstructs your view of the road, you can place something soothing (like pictures of loved ones or vacation spots you like) in your car. This can help calm your nerves when you begin to feel anger taking over. You’ll be reminded that you have a reason for wanting to stay safe on the road.
Think About the Money
Remember that if you are prone to road rage, this can lead to an accident. Criminal charges and accidental damage from getting into an auto accident can be quite expensive. Even if you and the others involved walk away unhurt, you can still end up with tickets, lawyer costs, and growing insurance rates.
If you’re getting too angry, you can always pull over and take a breather. Sure, it takes a little more time to get where you’re going, but it can calm you down and prevent an accident. Just remember not to pull over just so you can confront another driver. This can lead to a violent confrontation.
Consider the Other People in the Car
If you’re driving with someone, you don’t want to get out of control with your road rage behavior because any mistakes you make while driving will affect them too. If nobody’s with you, pretend that someone is.
Make Your Car Comfortable
Your surroundings have a direct impact on your mood. If it’s too hot, use your AC or roll down your windows. If it’s cold, use your heater. Keep some water in the car so you’re not getting too thirsty.
Think About the Other Person’s Anger
If you’re angry at someone’s driving, they might be angry at yours as well – especially if you make it know that you’re upset. If you two people suffering from road rage continue their aggression, you could both end up hurt.
Realize That Others Can Be Stupid Too
Some people eat, talk on their cell phone, and do other dangerous things while driving. People can be stupid, and that means they’ll do stupid things while driving. Just remember that they’re only human and that you’ve probably done some stupid things in your life too.
Road rage is no joking matter. People can end up seriously hurt because they took out their frustrations and stress on the road and other drivers. Don’t be one of those people. Follow the above tips to keep your cool and stay safe while out on the road.