The dust has finally settled and beyond that dust is even more traffic. With the collapse of 85 there will be no way to work the system and get around the traffic until bridge repairs are completed this summer. Fortunately, some commuters have already adjusted to life without full use of I85 but others are still feeling vexed by the entire situation. To make matters worse, bizarre incidents have continued to plague Atlanta’s highways and railroads. Traffic on alternative routes has remained heavy and the congestion has continued to force many commuters to leave home earlier than they ever would have preferred. This also means the roads get clogged up with a bunch of grumpy drivers and the entire commute becomes incredibly frustrating.
So, to help make your ride just a little easier here are just a couple of different ways to help you stay sane in the bumper to bumper traffic.
This little kitty has the right idea. Road rage will get you nowhere, you just need to accept that this is our life in Atlanta for now. So keep calm. Try putting essential oils on a cotton ball and then place it in your air vent. That way you can relax when you turn on your air. Even try to practice stress relieving breathing techniques and if some rude driver upsets you, count up to 10 before counting back down to 1. Do this for however long it takes to keep you from having beef with a random driver. All that does is add even more unpleasantness to a long commute.
Nothing makes a drive better than music. So, to help you somewhat enjoy your extended drive home listen to music that keeps you energized and going because we know how tiring it can be just sitting and waiting. The good news is that Kendrick just dropped a new album anyway so, hey, what better time to give it a listen? There is something truly therapeutic about singing the chorus of “Humble” while an irritated driver struggles to squeeze back and forth between cramped lanes.
I know it’s weird but try toning your body with different techniques. There are tons of different simple workouts to do while driving. You can try squeezing your cheeks 50 times or focus on contracting your abs for 15 seconds and then release. If traffic is slow enough, you can even place your palms together in a prayer position and push your arms together as hard as you can. Believe it or not, adding these kinds of simple exercises to your morning commute could actually help you tone up a little bit. At the very least, it will give you something to do to keep your mind off traffic.
Nothing is worse than being on a long drive and getting thirsty. So be prepared to quench your thirst with a bottle of water or another less surgery drink. The Georgia heat waves are coming and those rising temperatures feel extra intense when you’re trapped in a car and sitting in traffic.
Snack It Up
Bring a small snack with you in the car to munch on while you wait. It will help you keep your energy and improve your mood. Nothing makes traffic worse than being hangry.
Go Before You Go
Don’t leave without going to the bathroom first. I know you think you can hold it, but I promise you that you can’t. Just go.
Driving Games… No Not Pokemon GO
Download some trivia games on your phone or find another game that doesn’t actually require you to take your eyes off the road for more than one or two seconds. There are some options that are safe for heavy traffic but be sure to put it away once things start to pick back up. Also, just because you’re technically going slow enough to still play Pokemon GO doesn’t mean you should be. Don’t get tempted and pull out your phone in an attempt to catch ’em all. It’s not safe and it’s not worth it.
Stop Switching Lanes
The traffic is staying and so are you. Changing lanes does nothing but fuel stress and irritate other drivers. There are no shortcuts so just relax. Some reports actually indicate that having too many drivers constantly switching lanes is exactly what makes traffic worse anyway. So don’t be a part of the problem. Stick to a lane and understand that it might be a long ride. It’ll all be over soon.
Wait It Out
I know we are all on a time crunch to go from one place to another, but if at all possible, stay put. Stay where you are and wait out the traffic. You could bring a book wherever you go, hit up a store close by or even just start tackling that crazy to do list at a nearby coffee shop to help time go by. Another hour relaxing somewhere is worth sparing you from an hour sitting in a hot car on a packed road.
Laugh It Up
Nothing cures frustration and boredom like comedy. So, download your favorite comedian’s stand-up and enjoy the drive.
Wrap It Up…With Bubble Wrap
Try wrapping your steering wheel in bubble wrap. It’s entertaing and releases stress.
Entertain Random Kids
Make funny faces at the kids driving by you without getting caught by their parents.
Carpooling is a fun and super effective way to handle your traffic woes. For one, carpooling means fewer people will be on the road. While this may not make a stunning difference if only a few people are sharing rides, it can make a huge difference if enough people decide to ride together. Not only that, but having friends in the car make the drive a little more entertaining. Instead of sitting in the car thinking about how much longer your commute is taking, you can chat with friends, play driving games or just sing a long to your favorite songs on the radio.
Hopefully, these tips were helpful to your new commute. Drive safe!