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HOW TO REDUCE DRIVING ANXIETY

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How to Reduce Driving Anxiety


Everybody wants to reduce the stress in their life and there are specific situations that are hard to escape from in so many ways. Driving is, unfortunately, one of those situations that can cause a lot of panic and anxiety. And sometimes driving anxiety can come out of nowhere; someone who's been driving for 30 years can find themselves suddenly clamming up, or others suffer an accident and it sets them on the wrong path. But what are the things that we can all do if we find ourselves in this unenviable situation?


Breaking Down the Journeys 

Literally and figuratively, by breaking things down into manageable chunks, it can help you to manage anxieties. Focusing on the road ahead of you is a very common approach utilised by psychologists. If you start to think about every single component, this is when you find yourself overwhelmed. Even for those people who haven't driven for a long time and don't own a car anymore, breaking a journey into manageable chunks will help to make the process more manageable. Rather than thinking about tackling the M25, find cars for sale that suit your temperament. And it's these little things that will demystify the entire process. It's a very common tactic when people are anxious. Even those that suffer from agoraphobia don't think about getting to the end of the street. First, they think about one little action that is way before they get to the door, and you can do the same.



Stop Giving Yourself Reasons to Not Do Something 

Our bodies were built to give us feelings of danger; this is what the whole fight-or-flight sensation is about. When we feel like this constantly, we can begin to give ourselves reasons to not do things. And when we start to panic, we can misinterpret anxiety as danger. Rather than viewing something as a sign that you're not meant to get back in a car because you stepped out into the road when a car came and narrowly missed you, think about the real reasons this actually happened. Were you tired? Were you not thinking? When we think something is “a sign” that we shouldn't do something, we can hang everything upon this, where, in fact, these are all just amazing coincidences.



Reducing Avoidance 

When we associate something with danger, we avoid it. Our brains learn that when we avoid something that was scary, it must be dangerous. But this is why we should train our brain. This is where something like cognitive behavioural therapy comes in handy, because it retrains us to look at a situation and not think of it as scary. By confronting situations that trigger anxiety, it teaches your nervous system that it is not so scary. By slowly exposing ourselves to something, we demystify the nature of it, which takes us out of our comfort zone, but also expands our “sphere of comfort.” Driving anxiety is common but it is entirely possible to reduce it, especially for those people who have been avoiding it for so long.


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