When I’m stuck in traffic, my mind often wanders to this beloved scene from the 1999 hit, “Office Space.” The dull, all-over pain of having places to go and things to do and being met with nothing but brake lights and bumper stickers.
We mostly think of our cars as aluminum portals to take us from point A to point B. But what if we think of our cars as a sanctuary from the stress of our daily lives? A temple of total you-time where you can tune out and plug into the present moment. With some wisdom from cool-headed commuters, we gathered a few tips and tricks to turn your wheels into your zenmobile.
Engage your brain
Keeping your mind occupied with stimulating, educational content can significantly ease your suffering. Downloading podcasts, audiobooks or tuning into talk radio is a great way to stick it to the traffic man.
Phone a friend
(Hands-free of course.) Calling a friend or family member is a great way to distract from the pain of driving delays while also helping you nurture the important relationships in your life.
Note: Never use your phone to text while driving
Many technologies exist now to help drivers avoid high-traffic areas. Use an app like Waze (a community-based traffic app) to find out about real-time road issues. Because sometimes it’s all about outsmarting the streets.
Roll down the windows
When your body is all wound up from stress, it’s prime time to do some deep breathing exercises. Fresh air can help release some of that tension by flooding oxygen to your body and brain.
Make a pit stop
If all else fails and traffic is just unbearable, find a stop along the way that gives you a break from all the braking. The park or the mall can serve as the intermission you need to get home safely and sanely.
An in-car concert is a fast, fun and easy way to turn your mood right around. Whether it’s turning on the radio or tuning into your ‘favorites’ playlist – let the music move you into your happy place.
Do you have other tips and tricks for staying sane during traffic? Share your ideas with us on Twitter using #zenmobile.