Is Becoming a Trucker Right for Me?

by Dave
(Huntsville, AL)

First of all, hello. I'm new here, but I've been lurking for a little while.

I know that no one can tell me 100% yes or no, but I was hoping I could get some opinions from as many as possible based on what I tell you about myself.

I've been thinking very seriously about getting into trucking for a couple of weeks now. I've been reading tons of forum posts and articles, and I've watched dozens of videos about being a truck driver on YouTube and other places.

I've read about all the pros and cons and I'm thinking more and more that this might be something I'd enjoy doing, despite the "cons", many of which aren't even "cons" to me at all really.

I'll tell you a little about myself and my situation. I'm 34 years old, never married, no kids, not even a girlfriend at the moment, so I have no attachments here at home. The last few years have sucked.

I was an insurance agent for 9 years, sold cars for a couple years. Basically I've been in sales most of my adult life and hated it with a passion. I hate dressing up and I really don't like working with other people or trying to sell things to people. I also always hated having to go to an office every day.

I lost my last steady job selling cars when the market crashed and I've pretty much been out of work for a couple years now. I've done some computer work on the side to make a little money here and there but for the most part, I've lost everything the last two years, my home, my car, I have no money to speak of and I ended up having to move back in with my parents.

So, I'm at a point where I absolutely have "nothing to lose" as they say, which is why I've been considering trucking as a career. I figure, if nothing else I can do it for a year or two to get back on my feet and if I hate it, then I can find something else to do.

Reasons I think it would be a good move for me:

1. Not making a lot of money right away wouldn't make any difference to me. I haven't had a steady paycheck in 2 years so anything is better than what I have now. I literally have like $9 to my name right now.

2. I've only been in one accident and it was a very minor one 13 years ago. I had a few tickets when I was younger as well, but they are all at least 12 years old. I have no criminal record of any kind.

3. I am and always have been a "loner". Not that I can't get along with others, I definitely can, I can fake it with the best of them. I played sports in high school, have had a pretty active social life when I wanted to over the years, but I've always preferred to be left alone a majority of the time.

I've always worked best when someone says, "this is what we need you to do by this time" and then leaves me the hell alone and lets me do it.

4. Being away from home for long periods wouldn't bother me, in fact, as much as I love them to death, after living with my parents for the last year, I will more than welcome long periods out on my own. As I said before, no wife, no gf, no kids and only one really good friend that still lives near me that I ever hang out with anyway.

5. I am a very laid back person. Things that I have no control over, just don't bother me. I have a very "whatever" kind of attitude towards things when they go wrong. I very very rarely lose my temper.

6. I'm a pretty intelligent guy and have always been a quick learner, so I don't think the learning part would be a problem for me. I've never failed a test of any kind in my life. SAT and ACT scores were in the top 2% in the nation, I always passed state insurance exams the first time I took them, blah blah blah. Bottom line, I'm a smart guy and not trying to brag or anything, but I'm not ashamed of the fact that I'm intelligent.

7. I'm in decent shape. Not the kind of shape I was in high school when I played football and baseball year round, but I'm about 5' 9", 175 lbs, still pretty athletic build, so I don't think the job would be physically taxing on me.

8. I like to drive and really would love to travel, and yes I know that I'm not really going to have much time to go sightseeing, but it would be awesome to me to just see anything outside of the south. I've lived in Alabama since I was 7 and have never been west of Mississippi, never been further north than Indiana and never been further east than eastern Kentucky.

That's about all I can think of right now. Sorry if my post was a little long, but if any of you can give me your opinions I would love to hear them. Thanks ahead of time to anyone who replies.

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Jul 28, 2014
truck'n RN NEW
by: yeah buddy

Truck'n RN get in an 18 Wheeler loaded and move it one block. You deal with dying families we deal with not sending them to you, you deal with their families we deal with not killing an entire family in one vehicle the dumb drivers are just part of it.
Handling the machine itself is where it starts, ever hear of suicide by truck?? Look it up then their in there the weather we don't stop trucking because there is a blizzard or hurricane companies want the load delivered on time regardless they don't care what it's like outside, add the families and dumb drivers and 80k pounds of machine that you must handle not to mention the $$ cost of all your hauling them maybe you'll start to understand that trying not kill anyone is a little stressful

Apr 19, 2013
Trucking stress? NEW
by: Truck'n RN

I keep seeing "stressful" being listed as part of being a trucker. What is stressful about it? You have load, you need to get it to a certain spot at a certain preferred time. You have to deal with dumb drivers and inclement weather, yes.....but where is the stress? I was an RN, people dying, and dealing with family, MDs, and administration, delivering meds, etc.etc.etc........and I am considering a career change....... so I am wondering where all the stress is in trucking. It seems like it would be much more relaxed than my present nursing career. Thanks for any feedback...

Mar 06, 2013
The right company NEW
by: Anonymous

Just make sure whatever you do, you do a lot of research on what company you want to help you obtain your CDL from. There a a lot of companies out there that say they will help you do that and you need to stay with them for so many months/years or you have to pay tuition but they will push you as hard as they can to lease a truck. Make sure you do NOT do that or you will fail.
Good luck to you!

Mar 11, 2012
The Trucking Lifestyle is waiting for you NEW
by: Hervy

Hey Dave,

Just like NickV said, you sound like one heck of a candidate for the trucking lifestyle man.

I think it is just what you need and you are just what the industry needs.

You pretty much answered your own question, I don't know why you are trying to sell yourself to the industry, lol. You just can't stop selling.

We will buy it!

By the way, NickV is about the most seasoned Newbie I know.

Mar 08, 2012
Sounds good Dave
by: NickV

Well Dave it sounds like you have done quite an extensive amount of research. That's the first step. You sounds like the type that's laid back which you absolutely have to be in the industry.

Dispatchers, shippers, receivers, customers will all make you want to stab yourself in the neck at times so the easier going you are the better.

From here its just a question of whether you want to spend the money for your cdl. It is a great thing to have but once you get it your kinda married to the industry.

Its long hours, stressful work, and alone a lot but if your cool with that then your good. Now that's the down side.

The up is your always getting to go different places, no one looking over your shoulder, everyday is a new adventure. From what you have said I think you should go for it.

Just please pay attention to your trainers, always take your time, and be courteous to other drivers.

I'm still kinda new but vets really appreciate courteous drivers and they will let you know if your me. If you got any questions man please feel free.

I've been through the whole process the hard way so i'm pretty knowledgeable about what's ahead of you. Plus the vets that run this show are some of the nicest and smartest in the biz.

I remember 4 years ago I was in the same place as you. Went to driving school with the help from the gentleman on here, spent some time on the road and now i'm making about 800a week and i'm home every night.

The industry is great you just gotta be built for it and take everything in stride.

Good luck to you Dave and like I said if you got questions you came to the right place.

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