Overcome your fear of driving

Driving phobiaFearful and panicky driving phobias are very common, particularly after an incident or a prolonged absence from driving. They may manifest themselves in strange ways, perhaps, a fear of driving over bridges, travelling on Motorways, driving alone, stationary in crowded traffic jams there are many triggers for these anxiety based responses.

As you already know, currently, you can’t just turn off this emotional response, it’s because your reaction is triggered deep down by your unconscious mind (not the logical conscious part of your brain). Typically, the unconscious part of your brain tries to keep you ‘safe’ – however, sometimes it’s version of ‘safe’ can be outdated and what once was a good strategy to keep you ‘safe’, may now be a hindrance.

For example: If a lorry crashed into the back of your car endangering your life, your unconscious mind (the part that wants to keep you safe) might trigger anxious feelings or even panic attacks whenever you see a lorry travelling behind you because it feels that by making you aware of this, it might keep you safe – in reality it just causes more problems and levels of anxiety that serve you no productive purpose.

The unconscious mind works differently to the rational conscious mind and does not update these reflex responses automatically as you get older and wiser – which means that an event from your distant past that elicited a ‘safe strategy’ may still be running now although it is an out-of-date and wholly inappropriate response.

Common driving phobia triggers

In my experience driving anxieties are very common and can cause all sorts of problems from getting to work to going on holiday, in addition, you may feel guilty as you need to ask other people to drive you around or feel silly for driving miles out of your way just to avoid a dual carriage way or a bridge. Some of the more common triggers for the panic seem to include:

  • Dual carriage ways or motorways
  • Going over bridges or through tunnels
  • Roads with no barriers
  • Busy cities
  • Remote locations
  • Areas where there are no hospitals
  • Roadworks or restricted exit access
  • Driving over a certain speed
  • Having large vehicles behind you

Something to consider

Nearly every person I have worked with who has a problem feeling anxious whilst driving falls into one of the following categories:

  • Had a major life trauma 6 months before first panic attack
  • Has just begun a new family
  • Is suffering from other anxieties, such as, OCD or hypochondria
  • Has major circumstances in their life that needs addressing – work, relationship, money etc.
  • Experienced some form of scary motoring incident

Therefore, the driving phobia is a symptom that has another problem as the source. For example a person my have a panic attack on a motorway because they are stressed at university, but they don’t link the two together and just say that the motorway is the problem.

Hypnotherapy & NLP for fear of driving

Using hypnosis for overcoming the fear of driving has been very effective for thousands of people across the UK, it’s a tried and tested way to cure phobias, and when combined with visualisation, desensitisation and relaxation strategies it will help most people who deal with a driving anxiety to stay calm and just drive naturally. In addition, we will need to check out if any other things need changing in your life too.

The phobia treatment will allow you to control your anxiety and release past tensions that often stimulated and triggered your old fears.

I’ll be beside you

As you overcome these issues related to becoming anxious whilst driving, if you wish, I’ll come out with you in the car so there is someone with you who can keep you calm whilst you readjust to being in control again.

Anxiety, OCD & Depression

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