How do you know if Truck Driving is for you
Considering a career in truck driving? Find out if it suits you
It’s a tough but rewarding job that requires a thick-skinned, free spirited individual who knows how to maintain a good balance in life. The trucking industry can be extremely demanding on family, which is why it is essential that you know whether you’re cut from the right cloth, or not.
Truck driving can be an immensely rewarding job, offering a unique lifestyle that must suit your personality if you are to succeed. There is no massive requirement for routine, however, you do have clients to please and will require a large degree of self-discipline.
Before embarking on your new career as a truck driver, you need to consider a few things first.
If you want a successful career as a truck driver then you need to be able to work really long hours, most of it alone. This requires a tough and tenacious attitude. If you’re on the road 80% of the time, you are going to need to learn to love your own company, and that of your family’s when you get home. It’s a demanding career but it allows you to experience a freedom that few other jobs afford.
Open road adventure
You can often drive through several states in one trip so the potential for something new to happen every day is there. You will meet hundreds of different people, experience interesting new places, visit famous sites, feel some crazy heat and cold, and in some instances visit spots that most have never heard of. It’s certainly an educational career.
The first few months will feel like a challenge, but with each trip your confidence will begin to grow and strengthen. Before you know it, you’ll have struck up friendships with other drivers and you’ll become part of the pack. Making mistakes can knock your confidence, but you learn from the error of your ways. If you’re uncertain of anything just ask a fellow trucker, they’ve all been where you are, and know the ropes.
If you want a free lifestyle, you need to know that trucking is not all about freedom on the open road. You are not under a microscope, but you’re also not free to drive wherever you want to, whenever you want to. Your vehicle is monitored, so you are not really alone out there, and you still have a job to do. There’s also responsibilities to deal with outside of driving, which include doing the laundry, eating meals, fuel stops, vehicle repairs, and showering. All of these need to be timed to ensure you meet your deadlines safely and with undamaged goods.
Sleeping is erratic. You may end up driving all night, or you could sleep for 12 hours straight, it’s not a set time. You are required to take naps in the afternoon – not while driving! This will ensure you stick with the regulation sleep hours required by all truckers. It goes without saying that this is the first key to your survival on the road. Are you ready for this?
There are many more considerations for a “wannabe” truck driver and if you have any questions, perhaps you should go down to a truck stop and chat to a seasoned trucker. Educate yourself on the finer points before taking the plunge.
The Western Australian Department of Training & Workforce Development have a handy resource section for truck drivers