Driving a car is part of everyday life for many people. Between school activities, children’s gatherings and endless household chores, even in times of Covid, commuting is still an important factor to consider. Now, many of us long for the long-forgotten misery of the commute, if there’s one reason to run away from home.
Covid-19 has impacted many aspects of what we consider ‘normal’, such as drivers reassessing the need for car insurance and tightening hygiene guidelines for all transport-dependent industries. gave. Activities may change again as vaccine availability increases. What will driving look like when we return to normal pre-pandemic driving?
what to expect
Stay-at-home orders, social distancing restrictions, and the growing popularity of remote work and virtual shopping experiences have reduced the number of drivers on the road for much of 2020. While traffic has plummeted, road fatalities have risen alarmingly, according to the National Safety Council and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Given the unpredictable consequences of the pandemic’s driving conditions, many drivers will turn away as soon as they’re behind the wheel if they haven’t been driving for a long time or if they’re confronted with more and more drivers on the road. You may not feel comfortable or safe. Frequent occurrences of these traffic-related stressors can make things worse.
- Congestion: Up As Americans resume their normal work and school schedules, roads are likely to experience more congestion, adding time and stress to daily commutes and errands. Researchers at the Texas A&M Transportation Laboratory found that the average American spends about 42 hours a year on the road during rush hour. Motorists in Los Angeles face nearly double that.
- driver in a hurry : a Drivers who aren’t accustomed to considering the weather on their regular commute may be in more of a hurry than usual. Increased traffic tends to increase feelings of helplessness and urgency. In the long term, it can also affect your psychological health. Our commute can take a toll on us, and driver concerns can overwrite everything else. A Los Angeles Times poll shows that residents are more interested in transportation and mobility than other key concerns such as the economy, housing, and even personal safety.
- Wutstrasse: The Aggressive driving is a problem that drivers face all the time. When NHTSA analyzed his data from 2006 to his 2015, they found that he had a 500% increase in reckless driving fatalities during this period. This anger can also affect the quality of life at home. One study found that extreme traffic increased the likelihood of domestic violence by 9%.
«Life stressors act as emotional signals,» says Louisiana State University economist Louis Philippe Belland. The reaction is that in extreme cases it can be very wide-ranging and lead to violence.»
If these factors recover or increase overall, drivers could face a difficult adjustment period during post-pandemic campaigns. Preparation helps ease the transition.
As driving activity increases, it is imperative to keep your vehicle in good condition so that it can withstand the rigors of your daily commute. This is especially important for many drivers. Because while the cars are rarely used, many are parked in garages or driveways that are barely used.
As motorists step into the world again, experts agree there are a few things that need to be checked for safety reasons.
«Check your car before you drive,» advises Dan McMackin. He is a former UPS driver and now proudly works in UPS Public Relations. He explains; «All of our 100,000-plus UPS drivers in our company do this every day in our delivery vehicles. They do what’s known as ‘priority.’ It quickly and thoroughly inspects all safety elements of the vehicle to ensure it is in safe condition and drivable before handing over. .
He shares his professional testing tips with us. «Check your fuel levels and make sure your horn, lights and signals are working properly,» he suggests. «Check the tire tread depth and adjust the mirrors to get a better view of the road.»
Here are some other tips to help you prepare for the road.
- Schedule an inspection. Make sure you have a certified mechanic check things like work belts, electrical components, oil and other fluids. A trusted local mechanic can inspect your vehicle and perform all recommended maintenance.
- Please check the battery. If you’re using a stationary car, it’s more likely that the battery won’t turn on. Allow enough time before your daily commute to check your battery so you can charge it, schedule a quick start, and replace it if necessary.
- Inflate the tire. A flat tire can ruin any trip in no time. Use an air pump or stop at a gas station to check your tires and inflate them if necessary.
- Clean and disinfect. Even if you don’t use your car regularly, it may still have germs and bacteria from previous use. A spring cleaning with an EPA-approved disinfectant will help keep your car clean without putting you and your passengers at risk.
- “Friends and family aren’t the only ones traveling by car,” warns Rob Harper, head of US retail. united states of america. From Ziebart, an international car care provider for over 60 years.
- “Germs all over the country can easily get in. In today’s environment, it’s more important than ever to clean frequently touched surfaces (handles, door handles, lock knobs, control knobs, etc.) with disinfectant wipes. Please use alcohol swabs to clean the touchscreen radio to avoid damage.»
- Renew your insurance. During lockdown or homestay orders, we may change coverage or adjust limits of damage and liability based on average mileage. If necessary, check with your carrier that your insurance coverage reflects the increased risks you may face on more regular road trips.
- Please confirm your registration. We also recommend checking with your state motor vehicle department to ensure your registration is current and valid. A vehicle inspection is often a prerequisite for obtaining up-to-date evidence.
- Examine the windshield. «Many drivers may have put off repairing cracked windshields since the pandemic began,» Harper said. “…A windshield crack, no matter how small, can spread quickly and pose a serious safety hazard. Before you head out, take proper care for your peace of mind.”
Keeping your car in top condition can greatly reduce the mental stress associated with increased commuting.
Growing fears about the COVID-19 pandemic are creating a new environment of stress and anxiety that can affect your daily commute. Many drivers sometimes worry about unexpected changes in traffic patterns and driving hazards.
Here are some tips to de-stress and prepare mentally for the return of traditional travel and more drivers on the road.
For many, the days of commuting to the home office in 30 seconds are coming to an end. For those returning to work, one of the biggest adjustments is physically leaving home. After working from home for so long, waking up early to get ready for work can feel strange. Plan your travel time to work or school in advance to reduce anxiety.
watch the fear
Changes in the driving experience can change daily life and expectations of drivers. This can add to the stress and anxiety you may already be feeling as you prepare to return to work or resume more frequent driving activities. There are a few things you can do to take the stress out of your commute and office when you’re on your way.
Tips for mindfulness in the car
- Please drive slowly. When we are late or in a hurry, we tend to accelerate or change lanes to find a faster route. However, this extra time is of little value and often creates stress. Driving slowly reduces stress and increases your chances of reaching your destination on time.
- Create playlists. Take your time and create a playlist of your favorite songs. Familiarity with your favorite songs can make you feel better and have a positive effect on your mood. It also helps you forget about traffic anxiety and increased numbers of drivers.
- Consider a podcast or audiobook. Many people living with anxiety can benefit from podcasts and audiobooks from experts talking about meditation and mindfulness techniques. is designed to help you calm down even during nightmares.
Mindfulness tips in the office
The office can feel awkward and uncomfortable at first until you get used to your new workspace. Some employees may find that their office setup is not the same, while others may return to work in an entirely new company.
These mindfulness tips for the office can help you maintain a calm state of mind, even when working in a high-pressure environment.
- plan your day Having a plan or a list of priorities can take the stress out of everyday uncertainty. When I go to work each day, I have an action plan so I know exactly what I need to do when.
- Take on one task at a time. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with many responsibilities, especially when you’re thrown into a new or different environment. To clear his head, let him focus on one activity at a time.
- find your motivation When you’re going through a period of adjustment, it’s helpful to remember the perks of your job. Make notes in your journal or write them on sticky notes and place them where you will see them often to remind yourself why your work is meaningful and beneficial.
Mindfulness tips you can do at home
When you get home, these health tips can create an anxiety-free environment and maintain or improve healthy sleep habits.
- practice meditation. Guided meditations help you relax your body and mind and relieve stress from work and life. Start with a simple 5-10 minute guided meditation to improve your sleep and prepare for each day.
- keep a clean house Small things like making your bed or cleaning your home can help clear up mental clutter. Keeping your laundry and dishes clean may seem like a never-ending chore, but it keeps you and others calm and relaxed at home.
- Avoid electronics. Television and social media can always be a source of concern, as many news and media thrive in headlines. So turn off your electronic devices and always don’t let negative information get in the way of your thinking and those around you. Instead, relax with good music, games, chatting with friends and family, or reading a book.
continue self care
Many people have worked from home to create the perfect school or work environment, but turning home back into a place of rest and connection can be difficult. Setting aside time for meditation and mindfulness, or setting aside time for self-care at home can help you feel more relaxed and calm at home.
consider your options
Some states are moving faster than others when it comes to returning to normal life. With state governments handling the delivery of COVID vaccines to residents on their own, and with Americans queuing up across the country to get the vaccine, it’s clear the future is likely to change again.
This imminent disruption from established pandemic routines could halt our growing reliance on technology and more. Testing and even research are entering the digital world. However, companies that didn’t have a website (or whose use was limited) are well adapted to the growing technology-driven world, which can mean great opportunities as an employee.
Returning to the office may be unwell. Many companies may still allow their employees to work remotely as a standard practice.
If returning to your daily commute is too stressful, take the time to talk to your employees and explore the possibility of working remotely even after the company resumes normal operations.
The COVID-19 outbreak has brought several challenges to the daily lives of most Americans. With vaccinations on the rise and Americans wanting to stay away from home, we can probably expect more drivers to go out.
With technology playing such an important role in the COVID workforce, it’s no surprise that many businesses want to remain at least partially in remote capacity.
For employees who like to travel and want to return to a physical office, ongoing remote work can be an option they need to manage short-term or long-term stress. For those of you who have returned to your daily commute, remember to stay calm and practice mindfulness.
“There will certainly be more tension as traffic increases, but first and foremost, drivers returning to the flow of traffic should remember that driving is a privilege,” added McMackin. did. «We must all respect those who share our path.»