There’s a reason grandma got run over by a reindeer. Holiday driving can be a challenge. More than any other time of the year, the highways are jam-packed with people heading somewhere in a hurry. A new study found that “drivers are 175% MORE aggressive during the holidays than compared to the rest of the year. Additionally, Texas ranks third in the country for the most aggressive holiday drivers, behind Georgia and California.”
When I was younger, I approached the art of congested highway driving differently. For example, I would let in another driver, then I would carefully monitor his reaction. Did he wave to indicate gratitude? If so, I’d pat myself on the back for being an outstanding human being. If not, I’d get indignant and self-righteous. How dare he not wave! Doesn’t he realize what a saint I am?
Fast forward a decade or two.
These days, when I let in another driver, sometimes she waves, sometimes not. I no longer pay much attention to her reaction. Being a courteous driver is no longer about proving something to myself, nor is it an opportunity to feel morally superior. I let in another driver because it benefits me. It makes me more mindful behind the wheel, keeps me alert and attentive. It reminds me that other human beings are on the road, that we’re all in this thing together. It makes me a better, more peaceful driver.
Do something for “someone else” and you’re likely to be disappointed. Do something for yourself – even when that something happens to benefit others – and the reward is already built-in.