Funny how a simple thing as learning to drive is considered one of the biggest milestones in life when you’re young. Do you remember the exhilaration you felt when you were able to parallel-park your car for the first time? What about the time you finally got your driver’s license? Or that frightful moment you almost hit someone when you took your eyes off the road trying to make sense of the stick shift?
As you become a more experienced driver, you’ll soon learn that driving does more than just take you to your destination–it can also teach you a few special things that you can apply to life in general. Here are five golden lessons you can glean from driving that can help make your time on this earth more bearable and meaningful.
1. Power and beauty isn’t everything
When you’re young, you simply got to have the fastest, coolest car on the block. When you finally get what you want–a brand spanking new sports car–you finally get the attention of your peers, which was your goal in the first place. A few months of ownership and nobody even cares about your car anymore. You then start looking at the costs you’ve accrued for souping up your vehicle, such as those new mags, that glowing paint job, or that lowered suspension, and realized you’ve spent more than you can. You finally admit to yourself that there’s more to car ownership than speed and a pretty sight.
2. The state of your cabin reflects your personality
People share a lot of commonalities with the car they drive. In fact, your choice of vehicle alone–whether a sports car, sedan, SUV, or station wagon–could tell people a lot about your priorities. And the way your cabin looks? That can inform people about your state of mind. When you see a fellow car owner whose cabin is habitually messy, you probably come to the instant conclusion that their thoughts are disorganized as well, and that would be a safe assumption to make. And so if you’re the kind of person who’s focused, motivated and well-put-together, your cabin’s appearance will look the same way.
3. MacGyver should be every driver’s greatest hero
The inventive MacGyver could do most everything with just the available tools at his disposal, and his ingenuity can sure come useful when your car breaks down in the middle of a trip and you have to think fast to get yourself out of trouble. Hose sprung a leak? Maybe you can use that sleeve on your old shirt to tie it up momentarily until you get to the next gas station. Flat tire stuck to the hub? Slamming it with the spare tire could shake it loose. Watching a few car repair hack videos could certainly help you out should you ever find yourself in a bind while on the road.
4. You need to know where you’re going
You can’t just simply drive off and expect to get to your destination without any preparation. Just as it is with driving, you need to start with a plan and purpose. You’ll have a better chance to achieve your goals that way. Fortunately, today’s smartphones and their nifty navigation apps could easily guide you to where you’re going. Then again, it pays to be prepared. If you’re out to drive to a particular place, do your research before turning on the ignition. Check for the best routes and take note of the nearest landmarks. This way, you won’t be wasting time and energy–and this applies to achieve success in most things in life. Set a goal, prepare, and do your best.
5. Life’s too short
Too many drivers lose their lives on the road, and most of the time, these unfortunate losses of lives could have been prevented if every driver practiced safe, defensive driving skills while behind the wheel. Although some accidents can’t be avoided, you still need to do your best to be more patient on the road and protect yourself and your loved ones from other negligent drivers. Patience and conscientiousness are values you shouldn’t just apply while on the road; they are applicable in everything that you do. Life is too short to spend it mostly on mending mistakes that could have otherwise been prevented had you been more careful.