We all make mistakes in our daily lives. This includes times when we are behind the wheel. Unfortunately, your errors on the road may agitate other drivers and cause them to react aggressively. Most drivers experiencing road rage are often unreasonable. And their acts of aggression are usually out of character. So how can you avoid transforming into an aggressive monster behind the wheel? Here are some practical ways to help prevent road rage.
01) Solve Your Emotional Crisis Before Getting Behind The Wheel
Don’t drive while emotional. An emotional crisis is usually the catalyst for rage. Some common examples include a breakup or a divorce. Take the time to get yourself back into a stable state of mind before getting behind the wheel. Otherwise, a minor incident can quickly turn you into a monster.
02) Smile For The Camera: Road Rage On Video
Companies that own and/or manage vehicle fleets are using video technology to identify road rage indicators before they become big problems. They can monitor their drivers by using various technology platforms, like products from EyeRide, which include camera surveillance systems for trucks and buses, GPS tracking, and equipment, among others.
Individuals can also use video technology to help prevent road rage. Knowing that a dashcam is recording you while you drive will help influence positive behavior. No professional driver wants an incident of road rage on video. It’s the same tactic that police departments use when outfitting their officers with body cams.
03) Allow Other Drivers Room For Mistakes
Everyone makes mistakes, including you. Be realistic and accept that other drivers will make mistakes as well. With this kind of understanding, you will avoid getting offended when another driver messes up.
04) Depart Early
Another common cause of road rage is being late. People who are in a hurry will drive faster and more aggressively. To minimize being in a rush, leave your departure point early. Having adequate time to reach your destination will help prevent you from being upset by other drivers on the road.
05) Realize The Consequences Of Your Actions
You may do crazy and unbelievable things while in a state of rage. Some of these actions may include insulting others, which can lead to getting fired or going to jail. Are the consequences of your rage worth the impact it can have on your life? Probably not.
06) Pull Over
When your rage starts to surge due to other road users’ actions, pull over. You need to get out of the vehicle and take several deep breaths. Once you are over the anger, you can move on and resume driving.
07) Avoid Using Your Car to Express Your Rage
According to a road rage study by The Zebra, most Americans will express their frustration through non-violent actions like yelling and honking.
However, these benign actions can often escalate road rage incidents. At all costs, try to avoid using a horn, flashing lights, or crude gestures to express your anger with other drivers. These actions may encourage an aggressive response and create a situation where a road rage fight might spiral out of control.
08) Avoid Cars WIth Bumper Stickers
Cars and drivers of all types and sizes might provoke you to the point of rage. But there’s one type of car that you should go out of your way to avoid. According to a road rage study by social psychologist William Szlemko at Colorado State University, cars with “territorial markers” like bumper stickers are more likely to be involved in road rage incidents. The study found no difference in the types of stickers. For example, cars with either Metallica or Save The Whales sticker both indicated that the driver was more likely to respond aggressively.
Road Rage Prevention Tips
Remember that you have more important things than your anger. Your safety, the safety of your vehicle, and that of others involved are dependent on you, and far outweigh your sense of anger.