With long hours and long distances, truck drivers can often go through lonely stages on the road. The key to happy and successful days on the road is to find methods to curb loneliness. Some proactive measures will help truck drivers not feel so lonely. Mental health is important for a successful trucking career.
Learn about four ways to reduce loneliness on the road and how to mix each method so you are comforted with every trip on the open road.
1. Unlimited Internet Plans
Thanks to modern technology, truck drivers have the opportunity to constantly connect with others over the internet. When you are not driving, you can rely on an unlimited mobile internet plan to talk to others through video chat. A cell phone or laptop with a webcam will provide direct connections to family members and friends.
Seeing the familiar faces and making social connections can help you feel better while on the road. You have multiple options for unlimited internet connections. For example, you can purchase a mobile hotspot connection that gives you unlimited internet data and can pair with devices like laptops or tablets.
If you frequently drive in areas with poor internet connections, then you can consider satellite internet for a truck. The satellite connection may offer more stable options as you travel near places without cell towers.
2. Rest Stop Options
When planning out your rest stops for your trip, some rest stop areas are a lot different than others. Smaller rest stops may only include a convenience store and bathrooms, while others feel like mini-malls. Seek out larger rest stops on the road, which may give you a chance to hang out away from your truck and socialize with others for an extended amount of time.
Even if you just sit at a table to enjoy a meal, you may meet other truck drivers who are at the same rest stop. The interaction outside of your truck can help quell loneliness and give you a little extra interaction before heading out on the road again.
As you find rest stops you enjoy, keep track of their location so you can revisit the locations in the future. As you plan trips early on, you may find some hit-or-miss rest stops, but the learning curve will ensure you have the best locations in the future.
3. Healthy Eating Options
If you feel lonely, you could make your symptoms worse with the consumption of junk food. A behavior known as hedonic consumption occurs when people seek out quick and fast junk food options to provide comfort for sad or lonely feelings. While the tastes may seem satisfying at first, you may end up feeling more sad or lonely.
Before a trucking trip even begins, make an effort to eat healthy and keep your body feeling good. Consider packing fruits and vegetables to consume as small snacks. Consider a truck cab with a mini-fridge. The refrigerator can hold healthy foods and keep the foods for the duration of the trip.
When you stop off at rest stops, look for healthier food options besides fast-food restaurants. If you are limited to quick eating options, look for some of their healthy menu choices like salads or grilled chicken.
When consuming drinks on the road, you should also consider simple and healthy options like water. Sugary drinks like soda or flavored fruit juices could have the same effect as junk food.
4. Ride Along Options
One of the most effective ways to reduce loneliness on the road is to have someone with you. However, there are specific rules for the road for a driving companion.
Many driving companies require written requests and formal permission to bring a passenger with you on the road. The passenger is typically limited to a married spouse and may not include a companion or long-term partner if you are not married.
If you have children, older kids may receive permission to ride along with you. In some cases, the child has to be at least 10 years old. No matter who rides along with you, no driving is allowed and you may have to pay extra insurance costs to cover the extra passenger.
The extra effort may take a little time to complete but could be one of the best ways to impact your loneliness on the road. You will have someone by your side for the duration of the trip and could turn a ride along option into a regular thing as you travel across the country.
As you plan out your days on the road, consider the used truck options we have at Arrow Truck Sales. We will help you pick a truck with extra features to help reduce loneliness while you drive. We look forward to seeing you and understanding your truck needs.