For some people, seatbelts, airbags and GPS navigators just aren’t enough. The thought of driving alone is enough to send serious shivers up their spines.
Decades after Henry Ford revolutionized the automobile industry, choking up city streets and freeways with high-volume vehicular traffic, people have started to develop fears of these horseless carriages. Yes, there is such a thing as driving phobia – phobias, in fact.
But first, what is a phobia? Psychologists define it as an uncontrollable or irrational fear of a certain object, person, or particular situation.
When you feel scared whenever you get on a train or a bus, you may be suffering from traveling phobia. When the thought of maneuvering a vehicle through traffic leaves you breathless, that’s more likely driving phobia.
If you break into sweat while driving your boss’s beloved Bugati, which he asked you to take to the car wash (or what do the call it these days, car spa?), well, it’s not really a phobia. It just shows how you love your career.
Usually, a phobia is easily determined by just observing its symptoms, such as the feeling of breathlessness, excessive sweating, trembling, nausea, and most of all, having palpitations. These indications of panic usually have mental causes but the effects are more obvious.
It is often regarded as a manifestation of an obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), which usually leaves a person feeling anxious in almost all cases, especially when he gets near the object of fear.
Learning how to drive is becoming a necessity. It has become as important as knowing how to swim. The reasons vary. Some people just love driving fancy cars, while others really enjoy the mobility the skill offers. You’re missing out on a lot of things, therefore, if you’re afraid of taking the steering wheel.
As said earlier there are several driving phobias, as we have unique experiences with the automobile. People may have any or most of these fears: driving in an unfamiliar place, on motorways, in dual carriageways, getting caught in heavy traffic, getting through narrow lanes, driving in certain weather conditions, etc.
Perhaps the most common driving phobias are fear of turning left at an intersection (left-lane-drive countries like the United Kingdom will have no problem with this, of course) and driving through snowy weather, especially at night.
Don’t feel weird about yourself, however. You’re not headed for the loony bin. In fact, it is estimated that 10 percent of the world’s total population is suffering from different phobias.
So at this point, start teaching yourself not just the lessons of safe driving but also of managing your fears until you finally overcome your driving phobia. No method is effective if you yourself don’t think positively. This might sound difficult for you, but undergoing through some mental and behavioral changes comprise your basic steps.
Common examples of these changes include having the positive affirmation especially when it comes to your thought processing. Driving isn’t a difficult task when you know how, and you won’t easily get that driving license if you don’t really qualify.
However, there are some cases in which the degree of fear has gone beyond ordinary. So if you can’t find the solutions in your end, find it somewhere else. Sites like phobias-help and anxiety-panic reviews are a great help, or just see a psychiatrist for therapy and medication.