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7 Things to Plan For Your Long Distance Road Trip

7 Things to Plan For Your Long Distance Road Trip

Everyone enjoys a good long distance road trip. It’s an experience friends and family can share for years. All successful road trips have certain things in common. It takes the right people combined with the right attitude who have made the right preparations.

Route

One of the first things that need to be done is to determine destinations and routes. This will depend on the travel style of those going on the road trip. Some people enjoy staying at hotels; some are content with an RV, while others look forward to an opportunity to do some camping. This preference will impact route selections. It’s also good to determine sites to see while traveling toward a final destination. An interstate may be good for some people who want to get to a destination as fast as possible. Rural roads and their unique attractions may be the preference of others.

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Budget

It’s important to understand that road trips cost money. The important thing is to know they often come with unforeseen costs, and it’s important to budget for them. Unforeseen costs could be a surprise: accidently losing something important, a desire to try a unique eatery, need to replace clothing, unexpected car repair and more. Some travel experts recommend people determine the costs for their food, lodging, gas as well as entertainment and add an additional fifteen percent to ensure money won’t be a problem.

Visuals

When people go on road trips, they will want to photograph the experience. One of the most important methods is with cameras, cell phones and more. The next thing to decide is if the pictures and video recordings are going to be taken on impulse or planned out. Some people invest in tripods, special camera lenses, selfie sticks, GoPro cameras and more. Others are content to just take some random pictures and video with their cell phone and move on to the next destination.

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Packing The Car

The goal of packing a car is to consolidate all of the bags and other items to the maximum possible capacity. Some people like to put all of one type of thing in each bag. They put things into bags based on a category. Some travel experts suggest there will be more room when packing a car if the focus is on item size and making the best use of space. People need to try and pack light and only take what they’ll need. This will provide ample room to bring back items purchased during the trip.

Car Maintenance

According to Consumer Reports, it’s important to make certain that any vehicle used for a road trip is properly maintained. It’s important that all scheduled maintenance on the vehicle be performed. This includes checking the wiper blades, fluid levels and more. The battery needs to be checked to make certain it’s strong, and its terminals are clean. Tires need to be inspected for any tears or bulges. There needs to be a sufficient amount of tread on the tires. The vehicle’s brake system, including the brake pads, need to be checked and more. Prior to leaving on a road trip, the vehicle being used should have an emergency kit as well as a flashlight and first aid kit.

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Roadside Assistance Plans

Nothing could ruin a perfect road trip more than having something unexpected happen in a remote part of the country. It’s important to have a roadside assistance plan in place prior to leaving. Most of these plans provide 24/7 assistance in most areas. It can cover such things as jump starts, towing, lockouts and more.

Auto Insurance

Auto insurance is an important part of every ideal road trip. Before leaving, it’s essential that an auto insurance policy is current. Depending on the vehicle, it should have liability, comprehensive as well as collision coverage. If a person believes they are paying too much for auto insurance, it is time for them to get some car insurance quotes. When people know they have the right car insurance, it always makes the road trip much better.

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Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

More by this author

Kevin Faber

CEO Silver Summit

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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