Learning to Manage Trucker Stress | FTI - A Frederick-Thompson Company

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Learning to Manage Trucker Stress

Some parts of long-haul trucking seem unavoidably stressful. Trying to deliver a big shipment on short deadline through bad weather and traffic jams with bad drivers on the road, only to be greeted by rude receiving staff – you’re right to feel stressed! When this is your daily routine, the stress can add up and start to affect your body and life. If any of this sounds familiar, here are ways you can learn to manage stress of long-haul trucking:


Exercise is proven to help bust stress. For one, it gets your heart pumping and triggers the release of endorphins in your brain. Endorphins make you feel good and you can almost feel the stress wash away once your body gets moving. Exercise also helps distract you – who can think about the frustration of highway construction detours when you’re pounding a boxing bag or scoring a goal in rec soccer? Even when you finish exercising, its positive effects continue to radiate. You’ll feel relaxed and sleep better with just 30 minutes of exercise a day.

Plan Trips

A lot of frustration on the open road can be prevented if you are well-informed beforehand. Nothing is worse than trying to get somewhere on a tight deadline only to discover that construction or a low bridge you didn’t know about will add a 30 minute detour to your route. Find out what you can in advance and plan around it. Also think about leaving earlier to give yourself some buffer room. If there’s an accident ahead or you run into rush hour traffic, this extra time will stop you from getting stressed out.

Defensive Driving

Do you get stressed out by the unpredictable nature of drivers around you? They zip around way beyond the speed limit, switch lanes without signaling, and even try to text while driving. Worrying about their behaviour can add a lot of stress to your long-haul trucking route. Try to practice defensive driving by being very observant and anticipating their actions. You’ll be a lot less stressed if you aren’t tense about the unpredictable every move of drivers around you.

Breathe and Enjoy

Whenever you feel your stress levels rising, it’s important to take a step back and focus on the positives. You get to travel the country, experiencing new things every day. How many other jobs let you be out in the fresh air enjoying the open air every day? Instead of getting stressed out, take a deep breath and remind yourself of everything you love about long-haul trucking.
Trucker stress is a real phenomenon, but these tips can help you manage stress and stop small annoyances from derailing your day.