How to reduce stress when stucking in traffic

Mar 02, 2019

What should we do when stuck in traffic?

The everyday bumper to bumper chaos can surely add stress and negative vibes. Being stuck in traffic can cause the little road rage monster out of everyone. It will surely take a toll on almost everyone’s happiness, stress level, and mental health. It can cause even the most patient person to have unexpected outbursts.  It is a reality that being stuck in traffic means that we lose our valuable time accomplishing close to nothing but achieving a whole lot of negativity. prepared some tips on how to tolerate traffic. Here are some things that you can do so stress less when stuck in traffic to promote better mental health and positive aura:

1. Listen to music to entertain you for a while

This is the easiest of all stress reducing activities. Sing along with your favorite artists and bands. If you are all alone, sing loud and proud even if you are out of tune. Pass the time by, giving your vocals a little exercise. If you have your family and friends riding the car with you, turn it into your mini version of Car Pool Karaoke.

It will let off some negativity and time inevitably passes by quickly when you are having a good time. Bear in mind though to steer away from aggressive and angry music as it adds fuel to the fire. Go for happy and upbeat numbers, soothing and smooth jazz, or soft rock music. A good playlist is worth having available in car-heavy traffic or not.

Car's stereo

Listening to music is the easiest of all stress reducing activities

2. Indulge in a little snack time

Eating can make everyone happy so take this opportunity to open that small bag of foodies and enjoy. Munch your way as you battle the long traffic and let the sugar and happiness fill you up. It is a satisfactory past time, and it will provide you with the energy you need to endure a few more hours on the road.  

Take a road breakfast, lunch, and even dinner if you want to so you can maximize your time and cross off meals from your checklist. Just a quick note though to opt for messy free snacks or meals too to avoid the stress of finding salt and other evidence left on the steering wheel and the floor. Go for unsalted nuts, energy bars, sliced vegetables, and even chocolate.

Man eating in the car

Eating can make everyone happy so take this opportunity to open that small bag of foodies and enjoy

3. Play a Game if not driving solo

Traffic just doesn’t affect the mood of the driver but including the passengers. Babies get cranky, toddlers become annoying, teens irritating, and the old frustrating. Oh, what joy! This is where a little imagination, creativity and probably a little desperation comes into play. What about starting a game of ‘I Spy with my Little Eye’ and whipping out that riddles app in your phone? It will make the wait time bearable and company enjoyable. Remember though not to get distracted and if you are the person behind the wheel, do not use your phone and get carried away.

2 ladies in the car

Playing a game with a companion will make the wait time bearable and company enjoyable

4. Review and organize your calendar

You might as well be productive and do this task mentally. Shuffle your responsibilities and make room for a little adjustment here and there. This is a pretty good idea, especially if being stuck in traffic was not anticipated. Once you arrive on your destination, you are mentally ready on what to do first and next after losing precious time on the road. No time to panic because everything has been updated in your head.

Alternatively, instead of organizing your calendar, you can also create a mental checklist of the things that you need to be done. For mommies, a grocery list may be a good idea to compose while stuck inside the car.

Man using phone in the car

Shuffle your responsibilities and make room for a little adjustment here and there

5. Maintain a positive attitude

This might be the hardest challenge of all but remaining positive is the key in surviving a traffic jam. Always keep your cool when you feel like the clock and the roads are not working in your favor. This is pretty hard to do but getting more frustrated and angry over the situation might cause you to make irrational decisions that will do you more harm than good.  

Losing our cool won’t make the traffic flow smoother so let’s remain positive and just find other things to do while waiting for the next car to move forward. Try to attract all the positive energy you can. You can take the time to talk to your friend or to a family member via speakerphone. A friendly reminder though, that your mobile phones should be mounted and you are not cradling it. Your eyes should always be on the road and your full focus on your surroundings.

Two person smiling inside the car

This might be the hardest challenge of all but remaining positive is the key in surviving a traffic jam

Getting stuck in traffic has become a sad norm for everyone especially for folks living in the cities. It has become an unavoidable experience especially during holidays and rush hours. It would be recommended to know the current road situations and be open to alternative routes. You can also try to leave your premise earlier than usual to avoid the traffic jam. It also works the other way, leaving your premise for your destination probably 15 minutes later can also make the difference especially in the late afternoons to early evenings.

Nowadays, there are also a lot of mobile traffic applications that can direct you the shortest and the fastest routes. You can take advantage of these applications to navigate your way out of the busy streets and avenues.

Get comfortable and make sure that your car is a place that you feel good at. Be in control over the situation and don’t get controlled by the long hours of waiting and lost time. If all fails, then breathe in and breathe out. Release that negative energy. If traffic is going to be an everyday enemy then better learn some breathing techniques and stash on at least 8 gigabytes of feel-good songs, podcasts, or audiobooks.

Good luck! You’ll eventually get to where you’re going so just keep the focus and that head cool!

>>> Get more helpful tips and advice for all car owners here

Source: Hanna Miel Sanchez