How to Avoid Road Rage

As a kind and friendly person, there's no way you ever give in to road rage, right? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), road rage "involves a criminal act of violence, whereas aggressive driving can range from tailgating to speeding to running red lights." You definitely want to avoid road rage, and here are five tips that keep you calm on the road.

1. Go to Bed

Getting less than eight hours of sleep every night makes you cranky, irritable and less likely to stay alert on the road. So, go to bed earlier and avoid road rage.

2. Adjust Your Schedule

You're more likely to rush and feel angry while driving if you're in a hurry. Instead, make time in your schedule for malfunctioning alarm clocks, traffic jams and bad weather.

3. Turn the Radio Down

Aggressive music can make you drive with aggression while relaxing music calms your emotions and behaviors. If you can't give up your favorite radio station, consider turning it down so that you can pay attention to and hear what's going on around you.

4. Yield to Others

Naturally, you follow the laws of the road and expect others to do the same. But everyone isn't as obedient or conscientious to the law as you are. That's why you need to leave your ego at home, work or the gym. In your car, always yield.

5. Show Manners

You don't chew with your mouth full, demand the best office in the building or push your way to the front of the grocery store line. Yet you may lose your good manners as you drive. While being mannerly to aggressive drivers is challenging, remember that calm actions diffuse many aggressive actions. Always try to:

  • Avoid responding to aggression, even if you have to pull over.
  • Don't make gestures or yell to other drivers, and don't look at drivers who may be gesturing or yelling at you.
  • Park your car and take a walk, count to ten or breathe deeply if you start to feel angry.

Road rage makes driving a challenge for everyone. Be part of the solution rather than the problem when you take five steps to avoid road rage. Get started on making your commute calmer today.

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