Being a nervous driver is common. Many people have anxiety on the road even as experienced drivers and in well-traveled areas. After all, you’re in charge of a large metal box on wheels. And it’s likely you’re surrounded by drivers in similar situations but with different approaches to road safety.
Anyone can be nervous while, but it shouldn’t be overwhelming and stop you is you want to get behind the wheel. Owning and operating a car is often an integral part of many peoples’ lives. It’s important for personal transportation, can mean better living circumstances and even better job opportunities.
Which is why as a nervous driver it’s a good idea to work on confidence-building methods to help you feel more comfortable behind the wheel. You might be a good driver, but being a better driver requires confidence, as well.
If you’re a nervous driver, developing and maintaining good driving habits is of primary importance.
Here are some guidelines to help you develop good driving habits:
Using the wrong hand positions on the steering wheel or forgetting to use the turn signal are common mistakes. They probably won’t cause serious accidents. But the same mistakes made too often might signal it’s time to develop better habits.
Another good habit is knowing the speed limit. Keep your speed within the limit, even if it’s not posted. Different types of roads have different speed limits. So be aware of your surroundings know your position on the road and where you’re going.
Take driving breaks during long trips. A recommended practice is to take a break as least as 2 hours or more. This improves mental focus and reaction times during unexpected situations.
Retake Your Driver’s Test
Sometimes the rules of the road can be confusing. Whether you passed your test only a couple of years ago or it’s been more than 20 years now, retaking your test (either practical or written) can be a great way to boost your confidence. Even when your confidence improves, make sure to maintain it. Obey and respect the rules of the road. Don’t become complacent.
Many people think retaking a driving test should be compulsory every few years, but it’s currently not required. But signing up for a DMV practice test is a good idea since road safety can be improved by knowing updated or new rules.
Taking a virtual driving test online is also easily accomplished and rewarding. It allows you to simulate being in charge of a car and anticipate how to react to certain road situations. It can help improved road perception skills. It can help drivers feel more confident. Passing a virtual test on the first attempt is a good indication of your strong driving skills.
Have A Driving Plan
Know the directions to your destination. Select a route that avoids unknown roads. If possible, don’t drive during times when gridlock is common.
Use a SatNav whenever possible and keep a traditional map in your car for times when there might be no signal available for the vehicle’s navigation system.
Properly planning a trip with navigation road apps, of which there are plenty, will help assist avoiding potential trouble. A quality car navigation planning system will provide peak traffic times, fuel station locations and nearby accommodations. It will also detail which backroads are available if the highway is closed or too busy.
Get to Know Your Car
Make sure to read the car owner’s manual so you know how to operate your vehicle. Keep it in the vehicle. This will allow you to find answers should common problems that occur such as punctured tires, warning or engine lights .
If you learn how to fix basic issues with your car, driving confidence can improve. Knowing how to fix a flat tire or even change the oil will be a great assist, particularly when the closest mechanic may be dozens of miles away.
Driving can be problematic and being nervous is common. But learning about your vehicle and knowing, studying and following the rules will help a nervous driver become more confident.
Article Last Updated: June 3, 2021.
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