One traumatic event on the road can shatter your comfort behind the wheel. You may dread going somewhere, cancel plans, and lose freedom and enjoyment in the process. To break free of this cycle, consider these strategies for conquering your fear of driving.
Newly licensed drivers, whether 16 or 60, often fear driving because of the unknown. It’s impossible to predict what will happen on a drive, and there are so many things to track: other drivers, roadside obstacles, and so much more as you travel at high speeds. That’s why practice is your best tool to overcoming your driving fear. Put yourself into various conditions with proper support. Drive with an experienced driver whom you trust to give you directions and lessen your load while providing encouragement. As you gain experience, try going it alone more and more to gradually up your confidence.
While seasoned senior drivers have years of experience under their belt, they need to face one or several signs of decline. Cognitively, seniors’ processing speed lowers with age as lapses in judgment become more common, increasing their risk of a collision. Physical limitations vary widely—eyesight deteriorates for many, while chronic conditions complicate operating a car. If these emerging issues lead to a near-accident or worse, you’ll worry much more in the future. It’s important for you to be frank with yourself about how aging affects your driving and adapt accordingly. Restrict yourself to driving in daylight to improve visibility, limit how long you drive to prevent exhaustion, and thoroughly understand the side effects of your medications.
For other sources of fear, whether due to a traumatic experience while in a car or not, don’t rush back to the driving process. Expose yourself slowly to being in and then operating the car. Start by building positive associations with being in a car if that’ll help—maybe play your favorite music in it and have some loved ones drive you around. Then, progress to simply putting it in drive, then leaving your driveway, then driving around the block, and so on. Push yourself without challenging yourself too much at any given point.
When wondering how to conquer your fear of driving, enrolling in driving school is an option for people of every age. Driving Arizona can help. We hold driving skills courses in Arizona communities, including a traffic school course in Gilbert, AZ, and many more locales.
Traffic Survival School is an MVD mandated or Court Ordered class. You need to complete Traffic Survival School if you have received a Corrective Action Letter/Proof of Assignment or Court Order. Call 480-777-7303 if you have any questions.more info