If you want to become a truck driver, the first step is earning your commercial driver’s license (CDL). Most trucking companies prefer to hire drivers who have attended truck driving school, so this is the preferred route for most individuals entering the industry. Although completing your training at CDL school can come with its challenges, you can overcome these and set yourself up for success by focusing on your mindset.
Here are some of the top challenges trucking school students often face and how to overcome them:
While many challenges related to becoming a trucker are related to mindset, there are also practical skills that can be difficult to learn. After all, driving a large semi-truck is different from operating a standard passenger vehicle and can be intimidating at first. In this vein, semi-truck backing is often one of the skills that students are most nervous about.
Practice Makes Perfect
One way to overcome the challenge of learning how to back up in the semi-truck is to remember that it takes time and practice to get better. Even if it makes you nervous at first, getting out and practicing your backing will help you improve over time. Asking your instructor or other experienced truckers for tips can also help the fundamentals of backing “click” for many students.
2. Written Test
Test-taking is a challenge for many people and the written portion of the CDL exam often causes some anxiety. It’s normal to be a bit nervous, but you should also feel confident that you have the support you need to succeed.
Find the Study Method That Works Best for You
In order to prepare for your written test and ease some of your stress, experiment with different study methods to find what works best for you. Some students prefer flashcards, whereas others prefer to review the information verbally with another student. You can also ask your instructors for help with any material you’re struggling with.
3. Positive Mindset
Trucking has the potential to be a very rewarding career. However, no path is perfect, and if you focus too much on the negative, it can make it difficult to work toward your ideal circumstances.
Remind Yourself of Your Goals
Everyone has a different reason for pursuing a career in trucking. Whether this is the freedom of the open road, a desire to provide for your family, or another goal, keep your motivations in mind when you start to doubt yourself. This allows you to overcome challenges more easily and continue to improve as a trucker, in school and beyond.
Earn Your CDL
At Phoenix Truck Driving School, we can help you earn your CDL and are here to support you during your truck driver training. We have programs in Arizona, Texas, and New Mexico.