Being panicky under the wheel can keep you isolated and at the same time can cost huge travelling expenses. The fear of road travel exists to such an extent in some drivers that they avoid driving totally. This article aims to give some tips for overcoming hodophobia, fear of road travel.
- Understand the fear mechanism
Stress is the major contributing factor for fear of road travel. In most cases it originates from fearful anticipation like repeatedly thinking of awful things that might occur! Further, witnessing or experiencing traumas or going through an extremely bad road condition in the past and reading or hearing news of road accidents can also lead to fear psychosis. The first stage to overcome fear of travel is to recognize and affirm to yourself that it is a behavior and as you have developed this behavior, you can also develop the behavior of getting rid of the same.
- Recognize the fear of road travel phobia symptoms
When the fear of traveling away from home arises in your mind, you should start recognizing the symptoms of the phobia in yourself. In such cases you can experience various emotional and physical reactions such as headaches, dizziness, sweating, chest pain etc forcing you to stop driving altogether. There could also be a feeling of unbalanced car tending to tip over around the corners. Fight this out for overcoming.
- Avoid absurd thoughts
Always thinking that being under the wheel is a dangerous situation and repeating that the roads are dangerous, or driving is dangerous for finding justification in support of not driving, are simply an absolutist thoughts. You must start avoiding such thoughts and understand that driving is dangerous only when done recklessly. Start driving giving auto suggestions that you can drive safely and take rest when tired and drive again.
- Relax while driving
You must train yourself to reduce tension while under the wheel for overcoming the fear of road travel. Try to relax before driving and even then if you find that tensions are mounting up while you drive, start playing some soft music you prefer at the background. Music has a very good mood correcting quality and when the same is a favored one, it really helps to relax the nerves. Do this for some time and you will feel better during long drives.
- Seek professional advice and help
If the fear of travel sickness is allowed to grow for long, it may not always be possible to get rid of the same on your own. You should then seek the advice and help of a professional therapist for overcoming your fear of road travel. Find a sympathetic therapist and discuss with him in details or you may also consider resorting to defensive driving classes for returning on the roads.
- Make adjustments for safe driving
Making some changes to the car for some driving safely also helps to get rid of the phobia of road travel. These are all simple things that go a great way in overcoming the fear of road travel. Check the alignment of the rear view mirror, adjust the seat to your most comfortable position, and getting the broken things repaired immediately will help you to be confident while driving.
- Start positive affirmations for confidence buildup
Auto suggestions or self affirmations are great ways to overcome the fear of traveling in a car. You should tell yourself that you are driving safely maintaining the speed limit. You can also affirm yourself that there is no risk in switching lanes or taking turns and that you are ready to complete your journey safe and sound.
- Return to driving in a graduated fashion
When you have not driven for long time for fear of road travel phobia, you should start driving again methodically taking your own time. You must get familiarized with your car afresh and then have a small drive on the local roads you know well. When you are comfortable with local trips, then only shift to driving on to unknown lanes and ultimately on to the high ways, taking break as and when you fill necessary.
- Have a calming friend with you for sometime
There are people who are calming and reassuring always. While you are in the transition period of returning on the roads, you may take such calming buddies with you on long drives for gaining confidence. After some days the friend should be dropped somewhere and you should drive alone. You will thus be out of the fear of road travel phobia and will be able to drive alone after a period of time.
- Win your own battle.
Face the fact boldly. Whatever professional help you may take, this is your own battle and you have to win it with courage and determination.