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How to Be a More Defensive Driver

Defensive driving is crucial not only for your own safety and that of your passengers but also for everyone else sharing the road with you. Mistakes in judgment, even small ones, can have huge and lifelong ramifications for you and your fellow travelers. Here are a few tips for making it on your journey safely.

Keeping Your Cool

Road rage is a fascinating psychological phenomenon. Psychologists and social scientists have studied the increased instances of anger during driving. The most likely answer for why people become so enraged and sometimes violent on the roadways is the heightened stress that driving entails. Driving, especially at fast speeds like on a highway, is a high-stakes activity.

Disputes are never settled by verbal arguments, fistfights or more extreme behavior. If you find yourself becoming enraged or you are on the receiving end of a potential assault from another angry motorist, take a minute to perform a proven technique for calming down. Simply take a deep breath, calm your respiration and count to 10. It helps!

Keep Your Eyes Open

Flora Stuart recommends you keep a careful eye out for other drivers. Keep track of them when preparing to change lanes, in addition to carefully checking your blind spots prior to switching. Before you hit the road, make sure your mirrors are correctly positioned. It’s dangerous to adjust them while you’re driving because your eyes are off the road for a minute. It goes without saying that being awake and alert is absolutely paramount to safe driving. Disrupt the monotony of driving with some music or conversation with passengers, anything to keep your mind active and prevent drifting off to sleep.

Avoid Distractions

Music and talking are perfectly acceptable activities while driving. Texting, talking on your phone and watching videos are not. According to Shareably, anything that causes you to lose focus on the road is potentially dangerous. Practice responsible driving by placing your phone in the glove box before taking off. In this way, you entirely avoid the temptation of responding to a text message or rifling through your email inbox. Make a playlist that you can switch on before you leave so you don’t have to fiddle with your phone to choose a song.

Follow these tips for a successful travel season. Remember, it only takes one small mistake to cause consequences that can last a lifetime. We wish you safe driving!

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