Everyone has bad days, but when driving on Lagos roads, that could be every day. From the drivers, who should not be allowed within 5 meters of any car, let alone handle the steering, to those specific “danfos” and “koropes” that are some kind of death trap.
Lagos roads could ruin your day, but practicing these things could significantly reduce the chances of that ever happening.
- Mentally prepare yourself: As with any other thing, taking your time to think about what activity you are about to engage in, is a brilliant way of alleviating any stress that may come with it. Consider all the usual nuisances you will encounter on your route, and then map out a plan on how to avoid them, or better still, ignore them. This may seem like a small thing, but it could be the difference between you getting into an argument with a stranger or having an excellent day.
- Leave early: Honestly, the worst that would happen if you leave home early is that you get to your destination early. The alternative though is getting there late, angry, and a bit frazzled, which will you rather go for?
- Don’t engage: This may be hard, scratch that, this will be hard. You may have a few choice words for that driver who wouldn’t stay in a lane or the other drivers that have made it their life mission to cause an accident, and that is very understandable. But again, at what cost? You will probably get worn out from all that talk, and you are a lot angrier than you were at the start. Avoid all this and just ignore them.
- Don’t take things too personally: No, that driver who you will probably never see again did not mean it when they said ‘your mama’, you do not have to take too much offense to it. If it makes you feel any better, they will probably tell a lot of other drivers the same thing.
- Let your horn be: Listen, we understand that we are Nigerians, and it’s probably encoded somewhere in our DNA that we need to blow the horn at the slightest of inconveniences on the road. Don’t do that, especially when it is for some very flimsy thing. Honking at every little thing could come off as being passive-aggressive, and you are trying to avoid rage triggers on the road, not create them for yourself.
This is not a 100 percent foolproof method, but it does get the work done most of the time. Even when that anger that you specifically feel when you’re driving becomes unavoidable, don’t beat yourself up, practice makes perfect, and you will be able to let go of it all one day.