I travel for work. Yes, you read that right. I don’t travel to work. I travel for work. I am a Regional Manager for a non-profit organization. My business includes expanding and maintaining a network of addiction recovery homes in Oklahoma and Texas. My “office” is the dining room table, the local coffee shop or the hotel room I’m staying in.
Texas being a big state, I easily travel between 2000 to 3000 miles per month. I drive from city to city, checking in on field staff and meeting with referral sources to share the success and the model of our organization. I have been at my job for over 7 years and logged countless miles on multiple vehicles. Because I have spent so much time behind the wheel, I have learned how to make the best of it. Here are some tips I have learned:
Be Alert and Aware at All Times
To avoid the ‘highway trance’ or the ‘autopilot’ mode, it’s important to practice mindfulness and stay in the present moment. I do not want to retreat into my own world and disregard the environment around me. Practicing mindfulness is not easy. It has taken time and effort through study and research to learn how to do it.
Put the Phone Down
I hope we all know by now that texting and driving is a no brainer. Just don’t. I turn my ringer on silent and keep my phone in a place where I cannot see the screen. Phone calls can be returned, lost lives cannot.
Maintenance is Important
The excessive amount of driving I do puts heavy wear and tear on my car. I use full synthetic motor oil so I can drive up to 8,000 miles before needing an oil change. I also rotate tires at that time and have a tune up every year.
Use Alone Time Wisely
I take advantage of the time to myself. It may be the only moment I have. Listening to an uplifting audio book or pleasant music helps to keep me centered and at peace.
I don’t own the road. Life is not just about me. When I am stuck in traffic, I remind myself that, to everyone else, I am traffic. I don’t let other drivers change my mood, no matter how rude they can sometimes be.
By following these tips, I have learned how to enjoy my time in the car. Having a pleasant commuting experience helps me have a pleasant remainder of the day.