As much as we all enjoy the extra hour of sleep we get in the fall, the brighter mornings and extended evening sunshine makes losing that extra hour not such a horrible thing. Think about it… The morning sun will make for a pleasant start to your day, helping you get out of bed feeling more refreshed, and the longer evenings will make after school or work commutes a lot more pleasant. But even the slightest time change comes with an adjustment period. The idea of having to adjust to a one-hour time change sounds silly, but it does cause our 24-hour cycle to reset, triggering our internal clocks to become out of sync with our day-night cycle – which can have a serious impact on our driving. Luckily, we have some helpful tips to help you through the transition:
1. Get some extra sleep!
Getting 1 or 2 more hours of shut-eye a couple of days prior to springing forward will help make the transition smoother and prevent you from feeling tired or sluggish during the first few days of the time change. Some people actually change their clocks a day ahead to help with this.
2. Give yourself time and plan your commute
Avoid any added stress during the change. Plan your route and try to leave a little bit earlier than normal. Remember, you’re not the only one adjusting, so this will help you combat any unwanted delays or added traffic for the first week or so.
3. Give your sunglasses a shine
Make sure your sunglasses and clean and handy! You will be using them more often since the sun will shine much brighter during your evening commute.
4. Keep your distance
It is always suggested that you keep your distance while driving, but something else to consider is that other drivers may be feeling the same effects that you are experiencing yourself. This means there is a good chance that there will be more tired and groggy drivers on the road than usual. Be mindful of this in order to prevent any unwanted occurrences.
5. Don’t drive distracted
Your body is already experiencing a time shift, don’t add to the shock by being distracted behind the wheel. Ditch the phone, put the music down and save the Bluetooth conversations for later.
Now stop thinking about how you’re going to lose an hour of
sleep and start looking forward to springtime sunshine and the warmth to come!