According to statistics, the average commute is 26 minutes, which is about 18 miles. During all this time you are sitting behind the wheel and you probably think if you can quit your job and live in the mountains to avoid sitting in traffic. The anxiety of being inside the car for at least half an hour daily can be deleted, if you embrace a number of easy tricks.
Take care of the basics
When you leave your job you are probably hungry, angry and lonely. This makes you prone to both anxiety and accidents. To prevent you from either of them, you need to take care of these basic needs. First, have some snacks. Fruits and nuts are best, as well as chocolate, which can raise your endorphins level and boost your mood. Drink some water to hydrate yourself. This will already make you feel better. The last issue can only be fixed if you sell your car and rely on a taxi for the commute, but you can try to ease the feeling by turning on the radio.
Find something funny
If you can’t find a funny radio program, you need to find something funny, which can take your mind off the problems and help you relax on your way home. Another way to have fun is to put on a catchy song and sing along.
Breathing deep is a great way to relieve stress, so practice deep breathing when you wait in traffic. Start by filling your lungs completely, so your belly inflates as you breathe in. When you breathe out, exhale all the way, until you feel the lungs are empty. Repeating this simple exercise is going to make you feel better and will relax you, boosting your mood.
Even if you are in the car, you can have a short aromatherapy session. Many therapists vouch for essential oils, but it is not an exact science. Bergamot, lavender and mint can make you feel good, providing a much needed refresh. You don’t need a big amount of essential oil, as a couple of drops are enough to do the trick. Just pour them on a fabric and place it on the board of your car.
Change the route
Lacking control is one of the sources of anxiety, so you can try to take over the situation by changing the route. When you find yourself stuck in a traffic jam, just turn around and choose another route. This will make you feel better and will ease your anxiety. By doing this you might discover a new, better route and you will fight boredom.
Ditch the car
It might sound bad, but leaving the car at home from time to time can help you reduce the anxiety during your commute. Most of the negative feelings span from the stress of having to drive, so switching to the bus or train can be a good change. Also, you might find that walking on foot from one station to another can make the journey easier.