How to Mentally Prepare for a Long Drive
The life of a trucker can be lonely. If you’re delivering a load from Philadelphia to Austin, Texas, for instance, you would be driving for over twenty-five hours. That’s a long time to be alone in your cab, but truckers around the world are doing it every day. You need to be mentally prepared for those 1600-mile trips.
So, how do all those drivers “psych themselves up” for these arduous trips? Here are some suggestions for priming yourself for a long drive. They won’t shorten the mileage, but they might help the time pass more quickly.
Make the most of your time at home
One of the hardest parts of driving is having to leave your loved ones for four or five days. To counteract that, spend as much time with them as you can before you leave, and check in with them along the way. It will help to cut into the loneliness when you hear their voices, and it assures them that you’re okay.
Break it into mental segments
It’s mentally exhausting to consider a long trip, so think about it in smaller parts. Tell yourself you’ll be taking a break in six hours and rewarding yourself with a caramel latte. Now you have something to look forward to after four hundred miles instead of thinking about the entire trip.
Keep taking those little breaks along the way, and think about a small reward at each interval. It might only be a cone of mint chocolate chip at a truck stop in Tennessee, but it’s helping you complete the trip in manageable chunks.
Bring along things that remind you of home
If you and your family have favorite movies, bring a couple of them to watch on your portable DVD player when you’ve stopped for the night. Listen to music that you and your spouse (or kids) enjoy, or tune in to talk radio to keep your mind off the loneliness. When you take your breaks, get out of the truck and talk to others at the truck stops. More than likely, they’re feeling the pain of being away from loved ones, too.
Map your route
Create a map of the route you’re traveling and use it as a checklist. As you’re passing through an area, check it off. It provides you with a sense of accomplishment and, once again, turns one long trip into a series of shorter ones.
Marathon runners, like experienced drivers, don’t think of the full distance when they set out. Instead, they break the long race into a few shorter races (maybe four 10K races) to give themselves a mental edge. It works for them, and it can work for you.
For more advice on helping your drivers, contact an expert at Contracted Drivers Services today.