How Stress Impacts Your Driving

Are you stressed on your daily commute? Does traffic make you frustrated or angry? You’re not alone. Many drivers can feel stressed while driving, but knowing how to destress is essential. Increased stress levels can lead to anger, aggression, and even accidents. At Roadway, we want clients to learn how to destress when on the road and know the signs of stress so they can better regulate themselves. Roadway is an authorized provider of MAIF car insurance, and we work with our clients to find the right coverage for their needs.

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How Does High-Stress Impact Driving?

If you are under high stress when driving, you may be at a higher risk of causing an accident. In addition, stress can impair your decision-making skills, increasing the likelihood of aggressive driving and even contributing to road rage. Aggressive driving is punctuated by unsafe behaviors that can pose a risk to other people or property. Typical instances of aggressive driving may include:

  • Tailgating
  • Running red lights
  • Speeding in heavy traffic

Road rage is marked by extremely unsafe and deliberate driving. Signs of road rage can include:

  • Profanity
  • Hitting another vehicle
  • Forcing another car off the road

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that over 80% of drivers have experienced “extreme anger, aggression, or road rage” while driving. However, keeping calm on the road and destressing can prevent altercations and accidents.

How to Destress When Driving

There are multiple ways you can help lower your stress and become a safer driver:

  • Give yourself time: Slow down, make sure you have directions and a plan for where you’re going, and ensure that you’re going the speed limit!
  • Switch off your phone: Your phone can add more stress and create a distraction, especially if you’re getting calls or texts. Turn off your phone and focus on the road when you’re driving.
  • Practice defensive driving: Being aware of your car in relation to others, staying at a safe speed, and following road signs and etiquette ensures you’re a defensive, safe driver. Defensive driving means
  • Release tension in your body: If you tend to tense up in your shoulders and upper back, try to relax your shoulder and arm muscles. You can take a different position and even take deep breaths to help destress your body.

As an authorized provider of MAIF, we want our clients to get the best coverage and become defensive drivers to create a safer road. Accidents can also increase the price of your car insurance, especially if you’re at fault. Stay safe on the road and learn to destress to prevent accidents. Call Roadway Auto Insurance at 301.476.1183 or get a free car insurance quote online.

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