How to Boost Your Mental Health While Driving

A Girls Guide To Cars | How To Boost Your Mental Health While Driving - Tomikatalks Moonroof Infinitiqx80 800X600 2

Driving doesn’t have to be stressful.

World Mental Health Day is an important reason to pause and reflect on how such an important issue this is. With the onslaught of social media, politics, and financial stressors constantly bombarding us, it’s hard to stay sane these days. It’s a common misconception that driving is bad for your mental health. It can be good for you!

There are many ways in which driving can improve your mood and make you happier. From the freedom of the open road to getting some time away from work or home life, there are lots of perks to being behind the wheel. Here are a few things you can start today to boost your mental health while driving:

Breathe. Remember to breathe. This may sound silly, but mental health starts with your breath. When you’re feeling anxious or stressed out take a few deep breaths and focus on slowing down your heart rate. You can do this anywhere, even behind the wheel.

Related: Protect Your Car with Crystals? Yes You Can!

Aromatherapy. The benefits of aromatherapy extend outside the home. Certain smells such as cinnamon and peppermint produce a positive effect while driving. You can opt for a fancy oil diffuser for the car, an essential oil air freshener vent clip, or just add a few drops to your wrist and let it work.

World Mental Health Day

Headphones are a perfect way to hear your own music or movie. Photo: Tomika Bryant

Music. It is a known fact that listening to music can increase cognitive function and decrease stress levels. Create a playlist of songs that keep you motivated or smiling. And don’t underestimate the power of singing.

Healthy snack: Food is more than just a way to fill your stomach: it’s the fuel that regulates mood, energy levels, and focus. Healthy snacks like berries, granola, and water can help keep your mind fresh.

Phone a Friend: Driving can often feel lonely but hearing the voice of a friend or love one can instantly lift your mood. Remember to use the hands free option to avoid breaking any laws. This will allow you the opportunity to share your feelings or just get something off your chest.

Related: Gotta Get Away? 5 Ways Car Camping Has You Covered

World Mental Health Day

The Moonroof is the great way to invite fresh air in. Photo: Tomika Bryant

Open Air: Being so consumed with technology, we often forget the healing effects of nature. Roll down your windows or open the moonroof while driving to invite it in.

Think positive: Every single moment we have an opportunity to have a positive or negative outlook. The more you focus on the positive the better your day will be. Don’t give others the power to take away your joy.

Sing: Carrying a tune should never hinder you. People love to sing. The act of raising your voice in song is good for both body (since it’s exercise) as well as mind, since it creates an atmosphere where you’re free from stressors like work pressure or school workloads. When in the car, sing like no one is watching!

Listen: Is there a book or podcast that has been on your list? The power of a good book is relaxing. Most of us spend the greatest number of hours in the car so why not listen to a classic read by your favorite author. Podcast are also a great option because it can help you think and grow.

Related: These Days Are Stressing Me Out, But Here Are 5 Ways to De-Stress and Feel Happier in the Car

Crank Up the Volume

The best road trips are the ones where you can just wind down and enjoy some tunes. When it feels like things are getting a little monotonous we have an easy solution – crank up the volume! The perfect sounds will make even your less-than enthusiastic driving companion smile. These are five of my favorite podcast to listen to while driving.

  1. “Therapy for Black Girls”
  2. “Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me
  3. “Switch, Pivot, or Quit”
  4. “Imperfectly Phenomenal Women”
  5. “Small Doses with Amanda Seales”

Something for the Kids

  1. “Girls Make Beats”
  2. “But Why: A Podcast for Curios Kids”
  3. “This American Life”
  4. “Ear Snacks”
  5. “What if World”

With these simple tips, you can boost your mental health while driving. What are some of your favorite ways to stay mentally healthy on the road? Share them in the comments below!

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A city girl who fell in love with the 'burbs while learning that life is too short not to... More about Tomika Bryant