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10 Tips for Truckers Coping with Separation From Their Families

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Life on the road can be tough for truckers and their families. While truck drivers are away from home and missing loved ones, their family is at home missing them and trying to keep things as “normal” as possible.

The American Trucking Association (ATA) says, “nearly 70% of all the freight tonnage moved in the U.S. goes on trucks. Without the industry and our truck drivers, the economy would come to a standstill,” (ATA, 2013). Drivers and their families might wish for things to be different, but the truth is we need truckers on the road.

Although truckers and their families know that being away from home is part of a trucker’s job, the stress caused from separation can be very hard to deal with.

Here are 10 Tips to Cope With Separation:

  1. Pursue healthy, positive activities
    • Remember to eat right, exercise, and get enough sleep
  2. Use a journal to write down your thoughts and feelings
  3. Pursue personal interests and/or hobbies (example: book club, sports team, group gym classes, educational classes)
  4. Build a supportive network of friends and family
  5. Use relaxation techniques in times of stress:
    • Abdominal breathing
    • Progressive muscle relaxation
    • Visualize a peaceful scene
    • Meditate
    • Positive self-talk
      • We tend to be our own harshest critic, so try to be kind to yourself
    • Slowly count to 10
    • Practice awareness / mindfulness
  6. Focus on what is in your control
    • If you can’t change the situation, change the way you think about it
  7. Choose to be happy
  8. Practice gratitude: Choose at least one thing a day to be thankful for
  9. Connect with something greater than yourself
    • Spirituality/Religion
    • Volunteer or donate time to a charity or community organization
  10. Practice time management