Professional Truck Drivers know the importance of their job and how it affects their lives outside of work. With long hours and so much time spent on the road, it’s not always easy to maintain relationships with friends and family or to keep up with hobbies or other interests they enjoy. But balancing work and life isn’t just about cutting out all your extracurricular activities; it’s also about prioritizing yourself and making sure you aren’t burning yourself out before your next shift even starts. What many Professional Truck Drivers don’t realize is that life on the road can actually be detrimental to their mental health. This is because being away from loved ones, constantly having to interact with strangers, and pushing your body to its limits can take a major toll on mental and emotional health.
Some of the top challenges that Professional Truck Drivers face when it comes to a work-life balance are:
- Being away from your friends and family.
- Unhealthy food options on the road.
- Disrupted and uncomfortable sleep.
- Irregular work schedules.
Even with these challenges, it’s not impossible to have a great work-life balance as a Professional Truck Driver. By following some of these tips and recommendations, you’ll be able to enjoy your time with friends and family even more so. When it comes down to it, being happy outside of work will help improve your professional success as well.
Steps to Creating a Balanced Life:
1. Don’t Bring Work Home
One of the easiest ways to maintain a healthy work-life balance is by leaving work at work. While you might need certain items such as your computer or cell phone, don’t let those objects become distractions during your personal and family time. Keeping work separate from home will help everyone involved in your life continue to share more important moments together.
2. Explore the Places You Travel
Planning your trip to take advantage of the places you visit is very important for any work-life balance. Remembering that many of the places you will travel have restaurants and foods you’ve never tried or places of interest worthy of visiting, is a great way to enjoy the benefits of work. These days it is easier than ever to pay for a cheap taxi or rideshare to go out on the town, or to visit a landmark etc.
3. Try a Flexible Schedule
A more flexible schedule allows you to be home more often for special occasions and important moments, so whether you are an owner-operator or work for a company, communication with your dispatcher or broker is key in creating a schedule that can benefit a healthy work-life balance.
4. Learn Something
Audiobooks and audio courses, lectures, podcasts, and more, are great tools to use to do something while you’re driving or even on your off time. Being a Professional Truck Driver, these modern tools give a unique opportunity to expand your knowledge and horizons, all the while performing your job duties. It is easier than ever to find content on any subject you want to hear or learn about.
5. Find a Hobby
A hobby such as photography, reading, writing, or learning a musical instrument is a great way to free the mind from work stress after a long day or in-between times and is a great way to pass the time and stay sharp.
6. Connection with Loved Ones
By calling, messaging, and video chatting, you can always be in touch with loved ones while on the road. It’s easy to make video conversations, send texts and emails, share images, and more with cellphones, computers, and wireless internet access at rest areas and truck stops. Postage stamps, postcards, and a way to mail them are still available at many gas stations and truck stops as well. Consider increasing your communication with your loved ones, as well as to other Professional Truck Drivers on the road, to keep relationships healthy. Make an effort to inform your loved ones of where you’ll be at specific moments in time, and stay in touch and up to date on what’s happening at home as well. Activities with your family planned out in advance are also great to give you something to look forward to.
Remember that one of the most important parts of work-life balance is making sure that your significant other and/or children are happy as well. When someone is complaining about how stressed out they are because you’re never home or always working, take a step back and listen to their concerns. Don’t brush off issues as unimportant – problems within your life outside of work need to be addressed properly instead of set aside and ignored through each day.
7. Home Cooked Meals
Packing a favorite meal can remind you of home while you are away. Usually, this is a cheaper and healthier option compared to the food on the road as well.
A healthy diet, exercise, rest, and hygiene are necessary for establishing a healthy work-life balance, and practices such as relaxing, meditating, or enjoying the sunset can be great for stress relief and overall mental and emotional health.
9. Sleep Space
For most Professional Truck Drivers their sleeper berth is their home away from home, so it’s important to make an effort to have the sleeping quarters as comfortable as possible, as well as photos of loved ones and reminders of home all around.
10. Know When to Take Breaks
Knowing when to take breaks and how to use the time wisely, such as napping, or stretching, and also knowing when it’s time to take a vacation and time off to decompress and spend time with your loved ones, are of utmost importance for your professional and personal life.
11. Find a Company that Supports You
The company you choose to drive for is of the highest importance for your work-life balance. Working for a company such as Fr8 World Logi$tix that supports and cares for the wellbeing of its drivers is absolutely necessary.
Although a daily challenge, Professional Truck Driving is a career that offers you the opportunity to have a successful work-life and healthy home life together at once, if you apply the necessary practices and tools and use your time wisely. With effort and planning, and a company such as Fr8 World Logi$tix that supports you, a work-life balance that keeps you and your family happy is obtainable. This will in turn affect all aspects of your life, from physical and mental health to stronger relationships and bonds, and more precious memories shared with those you love.
Research shows that Professional Truck Drivers who balance work and family life are both happier and healthier. Should you want to enjoy success as a Professional Truck Driver, make sure your priorities are in order and know when it’s time to call it quits. With careful planning and foresight, not neglecting mental and physical health, and staying involved with those in your life, you can create an excellent work-life balance that benefits you personally, professionally, and financially.