We’ve all done it; whether you’re ranting at the misdemeanours of other drivers, screaming at the kids, threatening the printer’s life or swearing at the TV, moments of pure rage are part of our lives. When they do happen, it’s a sign you need a little TLC to ease your frayed nerves and reduce stress. Here are just a few simple ways to still those troubled waters.
Keep Calm and Make Tea
There’s nothing quite as soothing as a nice cup of tea to calm the nerves. The ritual itself gives you a time out, but you can choose teas that help to reduce the effects of road rage. Matcha tea is shade-grown making it rich in the amino acid L-theanine which promotes both profound relaxation and stress reduction, making it perfect for getting through a stressful drive with supreme equanimity. Other calming teas include chamomile, passion flower and peppermint.
Spray the Rage Away
Smells have a marked effect on your psyche and your body. Aromatherapy stimulates the olfactory system. This sends a signal to the limbic system that controls emotions, causing chemicals to be released which make you feel relaxed and calm. Lavender’s calming effects will help you to get your zen back for a safe drive home. This handy spray can be carried in your car for when you need to calm down.
Combine in a spray bottle:
- 2 tablespoons witch hazel or vodka
- 10 drops lavender essential oil
- 6 tablespoons water
This spray will also help with sleep, so spritz your pillow before you hit the hay. Getting enough sleep helps to reduce stress levels so you can keep your cool while driving.
Mindfulness is the practice of living in the moment and being aware of ourselves and others. When you are mindful, you are less likely to lose your temper. Mindfulness improves concentration, so you drive better and are less likely to make mistakes. Meditation is excellent for reducing stress which helps you keep a level head while driving.
Just five or ten minutes of meditation before you head off on a long trip or a traffic-ridden downtown excursion can really help you to have a safer and more pleasant experience.
Don’t Drive Angry
Don’t drive if you are angry, upset or nervous. If you have to go somewhere, ask a friend to take you, get a taxi or take public transport. Driving when you are upset or angry is unsafe and can lead to unnecessary aggression on the road.
Blast those Tunes
The right kind of music can actually help to reduce stress and anxiety which can prevent outbursts of road rage. Studies show that calming or soothing music can reduce stress levels considerably. Find a genre of music that makes you feel relaxed and happy and make this the soundtrack to your road trips.
Take a Deep Breath… or Four
Breathing exercises can help to take your mind off the problem and calm the nerves when you feel like a road rage incident is on the horizon. Breathe in through your nose, and out through your mouth. Be sure to breathe with your belly, and not with your chest. Studies show that deep breathing helps to calm the nerves and relieve tension and anxiety. Start by breathing in slowly to the count of four, then breathe out to the count of four. You should feel yourself calming down and regaining control after a couple of breaths, but keep going until you feel completely calm.
We are rather fond of you guys, so please drive safely and keep your cool on the road.