my top tips for learning to drive, whilst dealing with anxiety

I've been wanting to do this post for the past month or so now but I've been too busy exploring in my little car so that's why it has taken so long. I would apologise but that would be wrong cos I'm not sorry for being out, living my life...it has been too long since I've actually been able to be out & enjoy myself! :)

I was originally calling this post 'my top tips for learning to drive, whilst dealing with a mental health problem' since I created this post last year (before I'd obviously passed). But now I've managed to pass whilst dealing with anxiety I thought it was right just to state it as anxiety & share my top tips with you. Does that make sense? :/ I'm in no way saying that these tips will work for everyone cos no two people are the same but I thought I'd throw this post together anyway & hopefully help some of you too!
 
Since tweeting that I'm currently blogging about my top tips, I've had good feedback...from Alana & Jess, yoo hoo girls! I really hope this helps you both in some way or another :)
 
Image found on weheartit (as always)
 
the photo speaks for itself really! When you can help others, do it... there doesn't need to be a reason behind it. I'm hoping this post will help a few people out there. :)


Ok, let's do this...brace yourself for a short lengthyyyy more than likely simple waffley post. I'll try my very best to make sure the post makes some kind of sense! deal? :)
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number one -
when you're ready, go for it!
you have to absolutely want to learn to drive, chances are if you aren't really bothered you aren't going to stick to it. Most people learn to drive when they are 17 but that didn't interest me at that time at all so I didn't waste my time or money on attempting to learn. Over the past year or so I had debated learning to drive & then when I felt almost completely ready I dived straight in to my first lesson...I don't think you'll ever be completely ready for anything in life so you've just got to go for it when you feel you are as close to ready as you can be.
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number two -
honesty is the best policy?
I find no matter what situation I'm in if I'm honest about my anxiety it makes everything so much more manageable. Admittedly some people aren't going to be accepting about it, some will be judgemental but you know what...that's fine. Some people just aren't educated enough on the subject & there is also the stigma that still surrounds mental health. I genuinely don't even try to hide my anxiety at all, I literally go in head first & drop the anxiety bombshell. The last time I dropped the anxiety bombshell so to speak was at my last job interview...I'm actually working for them so it obviously didn't scare them away! :) I decided to email a few instructors explaining my situation & I got mixed responses (which we are gonna get in life, no?). There is understanding people out there, they aren't scary & they are willing to help you.
 
- tip number three -
book your lessons for a time that suits you best...
this might sound fairly obvious but I don't mean as in a time that fits around your schedule better, I mean book a time that you feel at your best. I know my own body & mind & I know I cope best if I get out the house straight away & get on with things. So most of my lessons were before 10. But then you do still need to have lessons at later times to experience different road traffic & situations. So my advice there would be if like me you are better once you've been out first go for a walk to the shop first or something little, so your mind knows you've taken that first step, you've made an effort & you've gone for it.
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number four -
make sure you connect with your instructor & they must be supportive...
I without a doubt connected with my instructor, she just felt like a friend. So I'd say this would have to be one of my top tips for learning to drive. From the moment I got in to the car to the moment I got out the car we'd be chatting away. I think you need to have the connection with your instructor. I know how lucky I was to be able to gain such a connection with Sharon, it really did make learning to drive so much easier. She has such a relaxed & calming vibe to her. I'd recommend her to anyone without a second thought. Sharon without a doubt was supportive from my very first lesson, all the way through to the end. That is exactly what you need, supportive people.
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number five -
don't feel forced to just settle...
I never actually had to deal with this because I was absolutely fine with my instructor from start to finish but I thought I'd just throw this one in (to kind of link in with the above one). I think it is important that we are comfortable with whoever we are learning to drive with, if you don't feel comfortable & can't seem to connect with the instructor don't feel forced to stay with them. Just change instructors, the instructor won't take it personally I'm sure.
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number six -
don't be harsh on yourself...
easier said than done right? But honestly, don't be harsh on yourself or beat yourself up over anything. If you happen to miss a lesson, don't be harsh on yourself or think you're failing...you really aren't. If a lesson didn't go to plan (we will all have lessons from hell, when nothing goes right...trust me!) don't put yourself down about it, we all make mistakes. It's part of learning & growing.
 
image found on weheartit
- tip number seven -
keep positive & keep on going...
whenever it feels like the end goal is soooo far out of reach just keep going, when there is no light at the end of the tunnel just keep on moving forward. You will get there & you will pass that test. I'm a big believer of thinking positive, yes I do get negative thoughts in my head (we all do, we are all human) but I decide to change them into positives & you can do just that too. When you are doubting yourself remember to turn your 'urghhh, I cant do this' into 'oooh, I can do this..I've got this sorted & undercontrol!' :)
 

image found on weheartit
- tip number eight -
try your best to keep on going...
this is definitely one I agree on, once you've passed your test don't stop there. You need to keep on driving because otherwise all that money you've spent on lessons would be an absolute waste wouldn't it? I'm so lucky that my parents have bought me my car, I'm beyond grateful & it really has changed my life. I understand not everyone is as fortunate to get a car bought for them but if you can try to even car share with a parent or partner (obviously if they'll let you of course). It really does feel like nothing is holding me back, freedom is only a key twist away... Yes, it might be scary at first but you can do it, you can drive on your own! Just think at one point you thought you couldn't pass your test :)


I'm going to leave it at eight now...gosh that seems like a lot but they just kept coming in to my head. If you want to chat you know where you can find me...on my usual space on the internet, my twitter or drop me an email if you like :) Or even leave a comment, but make sure you come back to check the response. I try my best to always reply to all my comments left on here. :)
 
I genuinely can't explain just how much learning to drive & passing my test has helped me grow as a person. I've actually had people say to me, 'you're a changed person', 'I can see an improvement in you' & 'it has done you the world of good'.. No lie, it really has. When I was learning to drive people would say 'passing your test will be the best thing you ever do'...take it from me guys, it really is no lie, there is no greater feeling cos you will have gained a life skill & have so much more freedom! :)
 
I hope I've helped atleast one of you during all that waffle & if you got to the end...*high five*! :D & as always thanks for reading. :)
- Anna ♥

9 comments

  1. I love you're saying there doesn't have to be a reason behind helping someone. I couldn't agree more.. I don't and never have done things just to get something out of it for me. I get hot from helping others.

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    1. thanks Nichole! :)
      I think you & me are very similar in ways :) xxx

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  2. Good post! Points 5 & 6 stuck out for me the most. Settling shouldn't be the case. If we're not happy about something/someone then make a change. I remember when I was having lessons, my driving instructor was such a bad communicator and was always late so I changed him after a week.

    Being hard on ourselves is what many of us are guilty of. Getting something wrong means failure. We all strive for perfection but it doesn't exist. So knowing you've tried your best and being happy with that is paramount

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    1. thank you :)
      I'm very glad that you changed & didn't get stuck with something bad that wouldn't of worked for you :)
      An awful lot of us are guilty of it, your right but its all about learning there is no such thing as perfect :) xxx

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  3. I have nominated you for a Very Inspiring blogger award! :)

    Have a look on my blog: http://aletterfromem.blogspot.co.uk/2014/04/very-inspiring-blogger-award_4.html#more

    xx

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    1. thank you very much Emily! :) xxxx

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  4. The post you written is very good and it entails many useful information for me about driving retirement. I am happy to find your great way of writing the post. Now you make it easy for me to understand and implement the concept. School Driving

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  5. Just wrote a comment on another blog post asking advice, then I found this! (silly me...) haha Thankyou! Your advice has really helped :) x

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    1. hehe, bless you! :) you're more than welcome :) I'm glad it's helped! xxx

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