Congratulations! You have your commercial driver's license, you've completed the required training and now you're well on your way to your first position. If you're the only person you know in the industry, chances are you're unsure as to what to expect during that all-important first year. As with any new job, there will be ups and downs, but there are some things you can certainly expect to experience during your first year as a truck driver.
Changing your lifestyle
Many people choose the trucking life because they hate the idea of a desk job and would rather be out and about. All Trucking added that first-timers should understand their lives will completely change. Truckers are out on the road and away from family, often for weeks at a time, but here's the reality of your first year: You will likely receive loads and routes that are not highly desired by other truckers. Veteran drivers will get their pick of assignments, and you will be able to choose from what's left over. However, this can be a positive thing. Any trip you take will lead you to somewhere new, so view driving routes and deliveries as a fresh experience each time. Plus, remind yourself that every job is boosting your driving resume and, over time, you will be able to pick the prime jobs.
On the other hand, the source explained, truckers are extremely fortunate to see so many different parts of the country, gain insight into people's lives, and always experience something a little different.
Get a good phone plan
As anyone can attest, it's tempting to just eat dinner and fall asleep after a long day of driving. Your first year as a driver you will certainly miss friends and family, and All Trucking advised that you make the effort to keep in touch as frequently and as much as possible. To that end, you will want to invest in a good data and text messaging plan, so you have enough bandwidth and data to be able to video chat, keep up with your social media accounts, text friends and family throughout the day, and stay on top of the news when you feel like it.
Brush up on time management
The Driver Solutions blog indicated that new drivers must learn how to attend to their time. It can be easy, especially without experience, to assume jobs are easier, and take longer breaks than necessary. Then, the driver will have to explain to the carrier why they weren't on the road earlier. Being a truck driver means you get to, essentially, be your own boss, the source noted, but this means you have to treat yourself like you would any other employee. Discipline is key to making sure the deliveries are completed and you arrive where you should be at the right time.
Your first year as a truck driver will be amazing and, yes, a bit challenging at times. Everyone has been a novice in one profession or another and with time, you will learn more and improve. Always ask questions and be eager. And enjoy your chosen career!
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