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10 essential things to take on a road trip

10 essential things to take on a road trip

Where would you go on your perfect road trip? Would you travel down Road 66 in the USA, or would you go through Europe? Would it be a long trip with sights along the way, or a short trip to visit somewhere closer to home?

Wherever you decide to go on your road trip, by making sure you plan your route before hand and pack everything you need, you can focus on enjoying your trip and exploring the world.

If you are getting ready to go, here are ten essential things you must take on a road trip.

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1. Bottles of water

Water is probably the most essential thing to bring on a road trip. You will be driving for long stretches of time and it’s important to keep hydrated. Pack a number of bottles and make sure you keep topping up your supply along the way.

2. Maps

Maps made out of paper, that is. You can’t rely on your phone or sat nav to be charged the whole trip, and you can almost guarantee at some point your electronic map device will not work. Having real maps at hand will mean that you won’t get lost (well, you’re less likely to get lost), and you don’t have to waste time waiting around for your mobile phone to charge. Speaking of which…

3. A USB car charger

If you have a lot of electrical equipment, or you want to use your phone on your trip (to capture all of those memories with, and to update Instagram, obviously), you’ll need a USB car charger. Better yet, get a charger with two ports so you don’t have to argue over who gets to charge theirs first!

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4. Plenty of CDs

Make a bunch of CDs so you have some playlists for your trip. Brining CDs might seem old fashioned but mobile phone batteries and mp3 players run out fast and there’s nothing worse than a long car journey without any music. Plus, if you stick to playing your CDs, then those songs will become synonymous with your trip, and will bring back wonderful memories when you hear them off-hand in a coffee shop or on the radio in the future. Music is a powerful way of creating memories that never leave us.

5. Snacks and food

You’ll need a lot of snacks and food for long trips, to keep costs down and avoid the temptation to stop at every fast food outlet! Bring easy to eat snacks like crisps, breakfast bars, fruit and sandwiches to keep you and your passengers satisfied. There are a number of benefits to packing your own food, even if it takes up more room, as you can control the nutritional value of the food you consume and you are flexible to eat whenever you wish. Relying on the food supplied by roadside cafes means you’ll be stuck with greasy fast food and unhealthy snacks.

6. First aid kit and emergency supplies

Packing a first aid kit and emergency supplies could be one of the most important things you do in preparation for your road trip. Depending on the road you are travelling on, if there is an accident or someone falls ill, it may be a long time until you can reach help. Therefore it’s essential to pack pain killers, bandages, scissors and plasters in the event of an incident.

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In the case of a breakdown, an emergency kit including a warning triangle, warm clothes, a torch, a spare mobile phone and some comfortable shoes will keep you protected as you wait for help.

7. A shoe organiser

Yes a shoe organiser, but not for your shoes! Hang it on the back of one of the seats and fill it with snacks, books, toiletries, electronic equipment and a bottle of water. If you have children, this is a great way of keeping everything in place for them to keep them entertained while keeping the car clean.

8. A car box

Car boxes are a handy way of creating more storage space, enabling you to bring more on your trip and saving room in the boot. Car Accessories Plus has written a handy guide to roof box compatibility so you can choose the right one for your vehicle.

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9. A spare car key

You never know when you might accidentally lock yourself out of the car…

10. A great friend

A road trip is always much better with a companion, whether it be a partner, family member or best friend.

Think of all the great road trip movies; Thelma and LouiseLittle Miss Sunshine and Road Trip. They are all about a group of people experiencing the road together; it wouldn’t be the same alone.

Have a great trip!

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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