I recently read a post from someone talking about how excited he was to be starting truck driving school soon and that he couldn't wait to get on the road. When I read that, I flashed back to my time in CDL training. I felt the same way as he did. I was just as excited and I had traveled halfway across the United States to get to truck driving school. I was extremely happy to read just how excited this soon to be driver was about getting on the road. Isn't this what trucking is all about? Making a good living traveling across the United States AND getting to enjoy all the sights and sounds at the same time?
Trucking Leads To Opportunity
When I made my journey to truck driver school, I made my way to Springfield, Missouri from Klamath Falls, Oregon. With a few layovers in between, before I knew it I was getting picked up by an old Navy buddy who convinced me to become a truck driver. He reasoned with me what better way was there to get my Class A CDL, get paid, and work on my journey of visiting (or working) in all 50 states AND improve upon my photography? How prophetic he was all these years later!
Trucking has done so much for me and opened up so many opportunities. A lot more than I had ever imagined at the time back in 2012. When things in trucking are rolling for you, it is so much fun. Every day is a different day. Every adventure is different. With all that being said, there is one common thread that helped make all of this possible: the help of Driver Solutions.
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Like Being New Again
When I read how this new student was getting ready to start CDL classes in Indianapolis, Indiana, it got me excited about trucking all over again. I have blogged about my entire experience since the start of truck driving school. I still remember the day I got my first truck and went solo. At this point I had done a lot of things on my own. I’ve hiked alone in Denali National Park in 2010, hiked the Colorado Rockies alone in 2008 & 09. And so on. So how in the world could I be nervous? I've conquered mountains.
But, I was nervous and apprehensive. Very nervous, to be honest. Operating an 18-wheeler is a big challenge with a lot of responsibilities, but with the CDL training I received in truck driving school, I felt I was up for it. Just like the 3-4 weeks in school, the learning curve came fast and furious. However, I found as long as I kept a positive attitude and remembered why I started this awesome career, I would make it through my first year.
Don’t Forget Where You Came From
You will learn many things along the way in your trucking driving job. One thing I hope you never forget are the people helping you along the way. The instructors put their trucking careers on hold many times to help all the inexperienced drivers. They are the unsung heroes in all of this. They brave everything. From the student who is struggling with a 10 speed, to the student who struggles with backing. I specifically remember one instructor who stayed late every night to work with students who were having specific issues. I also remember his words of wisdom. I still use them today. They work hard to make sure you learn and retain valuable lessons that will make you successful throughout your trucking career!
The Toughest Part Is The Beginning
I think as you progress throughout your trucking career, you may have a tendency to forget a little bit how tough it was when you started. In fact an inside joke with 2 of my instructors was about my use, really my lack thereof, of the ever important splitter in using a 10 speed. I guess putting the splitter up when straight line backing isn't a cool thing. Unless you are trying to break the world record for fastest crooked straight line back.
So many people give up on trucking before the real fun begins. The Driver Solutions experience will have you properly prepared to get you your CDL. What you do after that is all up to you. There will be ups, and there will be downs. You may feel you're going sideways at times. You may feel you are being pulled in 10 different directions, especially with regards with the family and them also learning the ropes about your new career. If you keep a positive attitude like one of my followers on Facebook has that I mentioned in the start of this blog, you will reap the benefits of a trucking job.
So as I'm sitting here reflecting on all of the great things about the beginning of my trucking career, I have a message for all of you students heading to truck driving school: have fun, work hard and study! To all the new drivers who just finished training and are getting ready to hit the open road: keep an open mind and smile. You made it! You're a trucker now.
About The Author
Wayne got his start in trucking by going through the Driver Solutions company paid CDL training program back in 2012. Since then, he has traveled over 300,000 safe miles and counting! After seeing his photos and reading about his adventures, we knew we had to share them on our blog. Join Wayne on his journey for a first hand look at life on the road!