From the time we first learn how to drive, a strong sense of direction is crucial to honing our skills in the driver’s seat. It allows us to know exactly where we’re going by identifying where we’ve been—which makes us more adaptable in unexpected driving situations. However, directional awareness is something that can’t be taught in the classroom. So, it’s essential that you first learn how to develop a better sense of direction on foot before you perfect these skills for driving.
Take Frequent, Long Walks
Training your directional skills doesn’t have to take place behind the wheel. In fact, it’s often more effective to first practice with long walks. Since you have more time to take in your surroundings this way, it’s easier to create a mental image of specific roads and landmarks along the way.
Start by Studying a Map
Whether you use a paper map or your phone GPS to direct you, you must take a minute to study them rather than letting it guide you. While these tools are useful to get you to your destination driving directions, they don’t train your internal compass unless you study them closely. So, use the map to pinpoint landmarks and large roads for your own knowledge.
Form Your Mental Map
Once you have an idea of what landmarks you have on your regular routes, fill in the gaps with your mental map. This will assist you in developing a clear idea of where you are in relation to other things. Though you don’t have to stop turning to your physical maps for help during this step, you should no longer rely on them.
Continuously Update and Test Your Mental Map
As you continue this process, your mental map will become larger and more detailed. Slowly updating it in this way allows you to become more in touch with your surroundings without feeling overwhelmed. Occasionally test your knowledge by listing street names or deciphering which direction you’re traveling in.
We at Unitruck know that if you make your living as a commercial truck driver, it’s essential that you can identify where you are at all times. While we can’t help you develop your sense of direction, we can provide you with the Mack truck aftermarket parts to make each trip go a little smoother. With our quality parts, you won’t need to worry about your truck’s performance. Instead, you can keep your focus on the road and getting to your destination.