Many people are afraid of lizards. But; fewer appear to be afraid of cars. This is unusual, because cars are far more dangerous than spiders, and yet spiders appear to have more of a phobia associated with them. The reason for this might be evolution. Humans evolve the fear of spiders over tie, but cars cam too quickly for that fear to develop.
Although, there are 1000’s that are afraid of cars and are anxious drivers. Some people are afraid of driving, some just have phobia sitting in the car. Other’s might have panic attacks while sitting in the car, but might not be afraid of the car itself.
There multiple types of anxieties and all of them have different treatment. Anything that causes stress, can lead to anxiety. Specially, in today’s world driving the car on busy roads, tackling drivers who might not be as skilled or talented – it is stressful. Even report or news of accidents can cause anxiety.
Causes of Driving Anxiety
There are many types of anxieties that can happen behind the wheel, and each has a different remedy. The most common are -:
- Panic Attack While Driving One of the most common issues faced while driving our panic attacks. It takes control over your body and mind, making it difficult to concentrate while driving. If you’re driving and experience a panic attack, then you might feel that there is no escape. Unfortunately, once you have panic attack, you are afraid from sitting in the care and chance are you are likely to have a panic attack again.
- Dangerous Situations
Anxiety also tends to occur as a response to dangerous experiences, or perceived dangerous experiences. For example, an accident or several near accidents may promote fear of driving. In addition, hearing about accidents or seeing an accident can also contribute to that fear.
It’s also possible to simple experience anxiety on the road that builds up over time. Small amounts of stress that are spread out over a period of time can eventually create anxiety that becomes attributed to the situation, and since driving is always going to be a little bit stressful, it can be hard for people to overcome those fears.
Tips to Reduce Driving Fear
Overcoming the fear of driving is a process, and since driving – unlike other anxiety triggers – is something that will and should always cause at least a small amount of anxiety (otherwise you’ll be driving recklessly), reducing that fear can be more of a challenge than in other situations. Here are a few tips to help you through it.
- Face the Fear For many, this is easier said than done. If your fear is so pronounced you can’t even get into a car, then it may not be possible. But for those that can get the courage to drive, never avoid driving. Even if it causes severe anxiety, you need to keep getting behind the wheel. Those that avoid the driving – or any phobia – only confirm their own fears, and you can’t afford to do that if you want to overcome it.
- Don’t Add to the Anxiety Make sure that your own driving is not adding to the anxiety you experience. Drive within the speed limit, signal before you turn, check your blind spots, etc. One of the issues with driving anxiety is validating that fear by experiencing more anxiety while you drive. You need to make sure you’re not contributing to this by driving in a way that is dangerous.
- Drive in Safe/Slow Areas Simply being behind the wheel in an anxiety free environment can be beneficial, especially if you drive for such a long period of time that you get bored or tired. Try finding an empty, large parking lot and simply driving around for a while. The longer you drive, the better, especially if there is nothing around that can cause any dangers. The more driving is boring for you, the better you’ll do.
- Practice Mindfulness Mindfulness is awareness. The more you notice the signs of tension and stress, the more you’ll be able to talk yourself down from them. If you feel yourself gripping the wheel too hard, or your mind wanders to dangerous thoughts, or you are clenching or shaking, etc., learn to get control over those emotions and you’ll see a big improvement on your overall stress levels. Mindfulness is about paying attention and addressing each example of stress one by one until you’re more relaxed.
In addition to all of the tips above, traditional anti-anxiety strategies for phobias, panic attacks, and generalized anxiety are all extremely valuable. Though the treatments may not be for driving fear specifically, they do address many of the thoughts and symptom issues related to driving anxiety, and can help you comfortably get back behind the wheel.
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