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Anger Management for Drivers: 5 Techniques to Prevent Road Rage

By marian on October 23rd, 2015

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A furious man driving, as seen from behind the wheel. Shot using a very wide fisheye lens.

Imagine yourself on a leisurely drive towards your dream destination, finally free from all the troubles of stress. But your car starts to slow down, and as you look up you dreadfully realize that you’re heading into a traditional Philippine traffic jam – complete with public transportation vehicles parking everywhere and private vehicles fervently trying to cut in line. Your maddeningly slow pace irritates you then, and now all you want to do is mow down the innocent Toyota Wigo from the Philippines directly at your front, illogically thinking it’s purposely antagonizing you.

You place a heavy foot on the gas pedal, ready to violently push through, but your brain prevents you from doing so. You should listen to it and for good reason: 79% of road crash fatalities are caused by driver error alone; and to be an addition to that statistic would be unfortunate. In order to keep safe, here are 5 ways you can reduce road rage:

 

Get some sleep

It’s a well–known fact that sleep deprivation can lead to numerous health problems such as mood swings and impaired motor skills. Get at least 8 hours of sleep to ensure your body gets the rest it needs.

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Drive safely

Make sure not to release your frustration unto your vehicle, as it will not help matters in the slightest no matter what you may think. Tempting as it may seem to let others know they’re pissing you off, keep in mind they’re probably not even doing it on purpose — they’re simply trying to get through the traffic jam just as you are. Refrain from intentionally blocking other people off or cutting in the queue as some sort of skewed “revenge” for the delay.

 

Project patience

Angrily honking your horn for an extended period of time will only make matters worse. Not only that, but broadcasting your frustration like that has a large chance of influencing other drivers around you as well, and tension on the road is never a good thing. Instead of fuming over how slow you’re moving, try to find something else to put your mind on. Common sense will tell you that thinking about it really hard won’t change a thing. Maybe listen to upbeat music or talk to a friend in the car to alleviate your boredom; little distractions go a long way.

 

Plan ahead

Do not procrastinate! Not surprisingly, whenever going on trips or appointments, most people leave their homes and give themselves just enough time to get to their destination. Again, refrain from doing this. Allot yourself enough time for sudden mishaps and try to get to where you’re going at least 15 minutes earlier than intended. If you’re bringing baggage with you, then make sure to preemptively fix them the night before leaving to make sure nothing gets left behind. After all, there’s nothing worse than going back all the way home because someone forgot to bring a necessary item. Not only will that hamper your travel time, but it might even double it as well.

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It’s not you

An easily forgettable fact that one must be constantly reminded of: other drivers are not out to get you. Sure, it may seem like that [car brand] over there just loves to purposely annoy you with every move it makes, but remember: he’s moving for himself, not for you. He’s driving his car, not minding you, or anyone else around him. He is minding his own business, and you should too.

 

Road rage is a common problem here in the Philippines and surely most other countries too, so keep these steps in mind and do your part to reduce this problem. Hopefully in the future, it won’t be so prevalent anymore. Problems are solved one step at a time; after all, and it can start with you.

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