Tips To Reduce Stress While Driving
Stress at the wheel is something that can occur because the lifestyle of each person influences the way of driving and also the congestion of the traffic itself, stress can play a very important role, for example, during traffic jams people tend to act a bit crazy.
But stress is not a negative emotion that comes all by itself; most of the time it’s accompanied by emotions that also become a factor when driving in traffic.
For example, we have all met someone who is anxious while driving. In its most serious condition, this fear leads to what psychology knows as amaxophobia (phobia to cars or to driving itself).
33% of drivers worldwide suffer from this fear to some extent, with women being more likely to develop it. Learn about how to decrease the risk of being in a car accident.
How To Overcome Anxiety When Driving?
- Be willing to overcome it
It is essential to be aware of the condition and want to really overcome it. Because it is purely an emotional state, the person should feel that he can overcome the disorder.
- Investigate where it comes from
In order to be able to treat this phobia it is very important to determine where it came from and what caused it. Do the exercise alone or with someone you trust and try to see what situations make you anxious while driving.
A therapy for treating anxiety is the systematic exposure to the source of the phobia. You have to get in the car and face the facts that cause anxiety.
- Don’t rush it
You must face the fear. However, it is necessary to step into this gradually so that progress can be made. In this way, you can gain confidence. For this, you need to start driving in quiet areas with little traffic. Then, you need to increase the intensity of the rides as you feel comfortable with the steering wheel.
It is also recommended to write down in a notebook, or somewhere of your preference, how you felt at the end of each trip. On the other hand, someone else’s company on the trip is a very good way to overcome the phobia while gaining confidence.
- Control your symptoms
When symptoms such as accelerated heart rate and restless breathing appear, try to stop them with some abdominal breathing exercises and progressive muscle relaxation. These techniques are aimed at reducing the physiological manifestations of fear.
Also, it is important to regulate thoughts in advance (to avoid catastrophic thoughts), stay positive and calculate risks while driving.
- Look for help
If the fear is uncontrollable and seems to overwhelm you, it is best to seek help from a professional. A psychologist will be able to accurately determine the source of the problem, in addition to providing relief during the recovery process.
Is Having Stress a Serious Issue While Driving?
Any stress causes a negative influence on driving, increasing the likelihood of suffering or causing an accident. It is also interesting to mention that the very fact of driving is a source of stress for some people.
If you are stressed at the wheel, your behavior is usually more competitive, aggressive or hostile. This can be a provocation for other drivers.
- You can react with impatience and angst, which causes you to increase speed and make serious mistakes while making decisions, in addition to decreasing the ability to anticipate traffic events.
- You may act more recklessly, which is accompanied by a lower perception of risk and greater tolerance to it. This is especially dangerous when driving at night.
- You will have less respect towards the rules of the road and being courteous while driving in traffic.
How To Control My Stress While Driving?
- Set your alarm clock a few minutes earlier to calmly face any unforeseen events that may arise on the way to work.
- Sleep the necessary hours (7 – 8 approximately). Avoid falling asleep while driving.
- Do not impose unrealistic goals on yourself, and prioritize your needs. Carry out the tasks one after the other, always planning time to rest and keep in mind that your resources are limited.
- Caring for a healthy lifestyle is very important. A balanced diet and some exercise will help as a stress relief to keep the body ready to face any demands and relieve tensions.
- Practice relaxing activities such as yoga or pilates, massages, taking a refreshing bath, stress reducing medications, etc.
- Avoid consumption of alcohol, tobacco, or drugs. Take special care with stimulants such as coffee or tea. Being dizzy when driving is never a good idea.
I’m a New Driver, Should I Be Scared?
Nervous about learning to drive? Relax, we have the answers for you.
- Get to know the vehicle.
- Sit in the driver’s seat and study every single detail.
- Find all the basic controls.
Follow These Rules If Problems Arise
- Be prepared for what to do after a car accident
- Always contact a car accident lawyer if you are involved in a car crash (your fault or not)
- Consider buying a safe and affordable car
- Be aware of dangerous intersections in OC and Los Angeles
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