As the population boom continues here in Northern Colorado, our streets are becoming increasingly congested. Traffic and summertime road construction can turn what should be a pleasant 10-minute drive into a 30-minute stop-and-go nightmare.
Your blood may boil when the car in front of you drives under the speed limit, or you may use rude hand gestures when a driver cuts you off, but it’s really not worth losing your cool. After all, anger could skew your judgment and get you into an accident! Here’s how to avoid road rage as you navigate Fort Collins and I-25 this summer.
What time do you go to bed every night? Do you wake up feeling haggard? When you don’t get enough sleep, you become irritable and more likely to lose your temper behind the wheel. Aim for seven to nine hours every night, the amount recommended by the National Sleep Foundation.
You’re more likely to experience road rage if traffic lights and other drivers are making you late. Leave 10 minutes early to give yourself a little extra travel time. You’ll notice you don’t feel so frazzled and arrive at work or school in a much calmer state.
When a slow driver finally pulls into the other lane, resist the urge to floor it and zoom on by. This only sets you up to lose your temper again when someone cuts you off 10 seconds later.
If you feel a surge of road rage coming on, pay attention to your body. Are your muscles tight? Do you have the steering wheel in a death grip? Loosen up and take deep breaths. Despite how irritated you are by a slow driver or long red light, rest assured that you’ll still make it to your destination – just a few minutes later.
Heavy metal is not the type of music you should listen to on I-25 during rush hour. Help yourself chill out with some jazz or classical music. Audio books and comedy stations are also good for reducing stress and lightening your mood.
Before you assume that everyone driving poorly around you is an idiot, consider that they might have a screaming baby in the car or they simply made a mistake. The odds are that other drivers aren’t out to get you, a fact that can help you avoid road rage.
When eating dinner at a restaurant, you don’t start swearing and throwing a fit if someone at a nearby table does something rude. The next time someone cuts you off while driving, just pretend they’re within earshot to help you remember your manners.
Having anger and hostility toward another driver has no effect on them, but it can damage your own health, especially your heart. Do yourself a favor and laugh off others’ stupidity instead of getting upset.
Have you considered that your harmless mistakes are sometimes the source of other people’s road rage? Apologize when you cut someone off, and have the courtesy to let a frazzled driver merge in front of you once in awhile. Treat those around you the way you want to be treated, and you’ll find those road rage moments become few and far between.
If everyone set aside their aggressive driving behaviors, just think how much happier and safer our roads would be! Make this change in your life, and you’re bound to notice these benefits.
Another way to stay safe on the road is to bring your car to Scott’s Fort Collins Auto for an oil change and tune-up whenever it requires these services. Our team is knowledgeable, our services are high quality, and our prices are fair. Stop by at your soonest convenience or schedule an appointment ahead of time by calling us at (970) 682-4202.