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I spend a lot of time on the freeway, with about 6-8 hours of commuting plus other travel each week. The thing that amazes me most--and yes really sets me off--is people who get the freeway mixed up with a video game.
What I mean is, when I'm driving along somewhere near the speed limit and a motorcycle or roaring pickup passes within inches of me at about twice my speed...well, it scares the ---- out of me! And then the anger comes!
My life has just been endangered by someone I've never met and never will meet. And they're gone and there's nothing I can do about it, but sit there and fume.
So, my gut's tied in knots and my thoughts are racing over something that took all of 2 seconds to transpire. I try to remember to breathe, relax, and all that good stuff, but sometimes I'd just like to have a chance to grab that other driver and shake 'em up a little. I guess it's my desire for revenge.
I usually calm down anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours. Worst case, I take out my anger on somebody else, or give my self a stomach ache over it.
What makes me the most angry of all is that somebody has the power to get to me that much that fast, and they don't know me from Adam.
Any suggestions, ideas or funny stories would be welcome!
Response from Dr. DeFoore
I totally get what you're saying--and I've been there! I find the trick for me is to get back to feeling good as quick as possible when this kind of thing happens.
I usually try deep breathing first, then I picture that other driver having a wake up call of some kind. Like for example, I picture the look on their face when the cop writes them a $450 citation. That eases some of my tension, which is the point here.
I find it also helps to just wish the other driver well--if you can find it in your heart to do that. That calms me down faster than anything.
Then I just start looking around for something to enjoy or feel good about. Like the fact that I'm alive and didn't just get killed. And that I'm not in a hospital. And that I'm not that driver scaring the pants off of folks.
Lastly, just take care of yourself, the best way you can.
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