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10 Steps to Stress-free Driving

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We all know that stress is a part of life. Whether it’s a difficult day at work, a setback in your personal life, or an unexpected traffic jam, you never know if each day will turn out to be a stressful one.

Although some degree of daily stress is unavoidable, the way you cope and prepare for it can make a world of difference in how you feel – both physically and mentally.

As we celebrate Stress Awareness Month this April, Creditplus has decided to bring you some steps you can take to reduce your stress levels during your daily journeys.

1. Plan your journey

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There’s nothing more stressful than rushing to your car, already late for work, only to get stuck in traffic for hours…

Leaving home with plenty of time to spare and checking for any traffic alerts or road works online before starting your journey can save you a lot of time and create a much smoother driving experience.

2. Hydrate and eat sensibly

Believe it or not, dehydration and eating heavily before driving can be two of the main causes of an uncomfortable drive.

Make sure you always carry a bottle of water with you and eat a nutritious, but light meal before getting in your car, to make sure you feel alert and energised for the journey ahead.

3. Get comfortable

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Back pain and muscle tension are two of the most common complaints among frequent drivers.

They can both lead to and be caused by stress, so making sure you’re not putting any unnecessary strain on your back while driving is a must.

There is a variety of driving comfort accessories in the market these days, so it might be a good investment to treat yourself to a nice seat support and enjoy a smoother drive.

4. Silence your phone

According to several studies, drivers speaking on mobile phones are up to four times more likely to crash, even if using a hands-free device, and this number rises to twenty-three for motorists that text while driving.

The dangers alone should be enough to make you silence your phone, but you may also want to consider how much stress you can save yourself by not listening to the nerve-wracking ‘beep’ of incoming texts or your ringtone going on a loop.

Most smartphones now come with a ‘do not disturb’ function that can be easily activated before driving, so give it a go and be amazed at how much more relaxed your journeys can become.

5. Get some good driving tunes

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There is conflicting information out there about the benefits and dangers of driving while listening to music.

Even though opinions vary, it is generally accepted that listening to music at a sensible volume can contribute to a relaxing drive, without impairing your ability to focus on the road.

Spotify has got loads of playlists for you to choose from, and we have put together a few good ones ourselves.

6. Make sure you have the essentials

In the unlikely event of an emergency or breakdown, knowing that you’re well equipped to deal with the unexpected hassle can make it all much easier to handle.

Should the unforeseeable happen, here are a few items that you should always keep in the boot of your car. Stock up with our key essentials list and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with being prepared.

7. Keep the kids entertained

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If you usually travel with kids, having a few entertainment options ready can make the difference between a peaceful journey and a loud, exhausting one.

Impatient children don’t make the best travelling companions. Having a DVD player, a tablet, or even a few games they can play in your car can make your life much easier – and certainly less stressful.

8. Have your car checked regularly

Staying on top of your car maintenance is a must-do, if you want to avoid unnecessary heartache and costs.

Having your car checked and serviced by a professional mechanic once a year and making sure it’s prepared for changing weather conditions are always good rules of thumb that can save you a lot of stress down the line.

9. Stay away from road rage

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Not only can road rage be caused by high stress levels, but it can also result in even more stressful situations.

By avoiding driving habits such as tailgating, double-space parking or sounding your horn unnecessarily, you are much less likely to find yourself in a situation where you have to deal with an aggravated driver.

Also, as hard as it may be, you should never engage with an enraged motorist, as it can only result in an even more stressful situation – or, worse, a violent one.

10. Make sure you have the right car

The right car for you will, of course, depend on your lifestyle and daily needs.

A compact little number may be enough if you do a lot of city driving on your own, but won’t do the trick if you have three kids to drive to school every day, or need to go through a 50-mile commute to get to work.

Because we know that driving the right car and knowing you can rely on it can make your life easier, we have gathered thousands of options to suit everyone’s lifestyle and budget in our extensive car search.

We also make it a point to provide our customers with a completely stress-free car buying experience, where you can get your car sourced, financed, thoroughly checked and delivered straight to your door.

Check out our Find, Fund & Deliver armchair service and apply today by filling out our two-minute, simple online form to get behind the wheel of your perfect car in no time.

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