How to Build Your Driving Confidence: Practical Tips
No doubt, driving for the first time is quite scary. For some, it may turn out to be their worst nightmare. Once you have learned to drive under the guidance of an instructor, it’s time to get on the road on your own.
By having all the controls at your disposal, you feel excited and can sometimes succumb under the pressure of handling all the things by yourself. Driving is all about confidence, and once you get it, there is nothing that will stop you. Below are some handy tips that can help you boost your confidence level while driving.
Give yourself some time to settle
After passing your driving test, you can’t start driving like a pro. This is because you need the confidence to drive on the highway or on a busy road. This confidence comes with time. Hence, try to be on quieter roads with your vehicle and learn from your experience.
Practice is the Key to Become a Confident Driver
Just like many other skills, the most feasible way to gain confidence at anything is to continue practicing it over and over. The case is similar when it comes to driving, as you have to drive as often as possible. In addition, you also need to practice driving in different situations to familiarize yourself with all types of driving conditions.
Start with your local streets; memorize every turn and bump by driving through them every day. Choose a time when the streets are less busy. Even if you don’t have to go anywhere, just make it a habit to take out your car and drive it for 10-15 minutes.
After that, get out on to the highway when it’s not as busy. Once you feel comfortable driving at high speeds, you can try taking your car on the highway during rush hour. The most challenging scenario is driving at night.
During these practice sessions, make sure to try to park your car at different parking spots. It will enhance your confidence to park your vehicle anywhere. Once you are confident enough to deal with the varying road conditions, try to go out during busy hours like early morning and lunchtime.
Furthermore, you should practice driving after sunset within your streets and close-by roads. This will help you to know how it feels when driving with your car lights on. Since it’s dark, you need to judge the road and distance from approaching vehicles.
All these skills come with practice. Furthermore, you must also think about driving in almost any weather condition. For instance, you must think about taking out your vehicle when it is raining; it will give you the confidence to drive even during heavy showers.
The best and simplest way to improve your confidence in driving is to practice. If you continue to drive daily, you will get to know new things about driving techniques. The more you get on the road, the more confidence you will get.
Memorize your Route
If you have recently learned how to drive, it is essential to know your route before leaving your home. It is the biggest challenge to drive your car attentively if you are searching for a particular location. Experienced drivers can handle this issue easily, but a new driver may lose confidence.
Know your Car
This is the simplest thing that you can do to improve your confidence in driving. You have to learn about the basics of your car. Knowing your car ensures that you stay confident while driving.
Furthermore, when you need to feel comfortable, it is essential to know your car inside and out. It is necessary to master all the controls. When you familiarize yourself with all the buttons and switches, you can concentrate on your driving.
For instance, you need to know precisely where the headlight switch is and where the indicator button is. Similarly, you must know where the hazard lights are and how to use the windscreen washer.
Moreover, you must take a walk around your vehicle to know its size and dimensions. By doing so, you can make better judgments while parking your vehicle at busy parking places. If you are familiar with your car, it will be more fun to drive it. In fact, you won’t feel any stress or pressure while handling your vehicle.
Start Driving into new Areas
After driving for a while in your own neighborhood, it’s time to take your vehicle out to some new areas. Some new drivers may find it scary to leave their own area and drive to a different location. For instance, you can take your vehicle outside to a multi-story car park.
In fact, driving to new places can boost your confidence. You can pick the perfect time to practice driving at a new location so that it is not as busy. This rule also applies to your attempt to start driving on the highways or motorways.
Never get Inspired by Fast Drivers
When on the road, it looks quite intimidating to move fast. However, this isn’t a rational thing to drive your car faster than you can handle. Other drivers who are driving much faster may also inspire you. The best way to keep yourself under control is to ignore such drivers.
Hence, you need to focus on your own driving. It may prove to be challenging to resist, as you just need to press the throttle to gain more speed. Nevertheless, when driving at fast speeds, you need to be more vigilant about the surrounding traffic.
If you don’t have the experience to handle your vehicle at high speeds, don’t try to attempt it on the highways or motorways.
Follow the Speed Limits
It is essential to follow the speed limits as they ensure your safety and that of other drivers. When speeding at certain turns, you can quickly lose control of your vehicle. Ignoring the speed limits won’t assist you in increasing your confidence; instead, it may cause some serious damage to you and your vehicle.
Take some Additional Driving Courses
Even if you have learned basic driving skills, it would be better to improve your driving by taking some additional driving courses. By learning through these courses, you can boost your confidence in driving.
In some cases, it is not just sufficient to pass a driving test to gain confidence in driving. Even if you have learned all the lessons, it doesn’t mean that you must quit learning new driving skills. For instance, If you are a nervous driver, additional coaching classes can improve your driving to a great extent.
These courses include defensive driving, motorway driving, and other driving techniques that are not covered by regular driving lessons. In addition, you can make your driving more controlled and safe by seeking some professional advice.
As a result, you will stay more relaxed and confident while driving under all types of road conditions.
Take a Break when Necessary
When you feel a bit tired, there is no harm in pulling over your vehicle and getting some rest. By taking a quick break, you can refresh your body and mind. You can even drink some water or juice to energize yourself.
Stay Calm when Parking
Parking a vehicle is something that most new drivers fear a lot. Hence, parking a car in a busy parking lot is the area where you need to show most of your confidence. One way of doing it is to stay calm when parking. Just pretend that you are alone in the parking area.
Modern cars have parking sensors and cameras to assists drivers. Hence, you can make use of this technology to safely park your vehicle. Moreover, most experienced drivers also assist newbies by allowing them to park first.
Don’t feel the Pressure
If you are going out on a trip with your friends, don’t feel pressured by the driving skills of your friends. These skills come with practice and time. When you don’t have the confidence to drive to a new location, you can simply use public transport.
Driving under pressure can make you lose your confidence; as a result, you start to make more mistakes. To avoid this happening, just make sure to keep yourself relaxed and calm. If you are not confident, don’t take your car out on a new road or highway.
Wear glasses if you need them
When driving in the scorching heat or blazing sun, you might find it difficult to see the road. During such conditions, you can wear sunglasses to keep an eye on the road. Hence, make sure to keep your glasses with you when driving.
Distractions are your Worst Enemy
Since you aren’t an experienced driver, don’t indulge yourself in different distractions. There are some actions, which are prohibited by law, even if you are an experienced driver. One such activity is using a phone while driving.
Before you start driving, put your phone in the glove box or any other compartment. If it is possible, switch it off for some time. While it is possible to connect the phone with the audio system of your car and answer calls in a hands-free modem, this can be too much of a distraction for new drivers.
Furthermore, listening to music may also serve as a distraction, especially when you are playing it loud. By keeping the volume low, you can’t hear the horns of surrounding vehicles.
Take Advantage of Driving Aids
Modern cars are equipped with the latest safety features and driving aids, which makes your driving safer than ever. These technical aids are available at your disposal, but you must know how to use them. For instance, the Emergency Collision Autonomous Engine Braking and Blind Spot Monitoring technologies require learning how to use them.
These are the technologies that play a key role while improving your driving and preventing accidents. When you know that your vehicle is assisting you to make your journey safe and secure, it gives you additional confidence while driving.
Even if your car doesn’t offer such technology, you can get some of these items installed in your vehicle and make it safer. Furthermore, technology also makes it easier for new drivers to learn driving skills quickly and gain more confidence in their driving.
To stay relaxed and fight anxiety, make sure to keep the environment around you as soothing as possible. The first thing you should do is set your best driving position. To find the ideal posture, you can try a variety of available options and then settle for the most appropriate one.
A comfortable driving position can give you the required confidence in driving. Furthermore, keep in mind to correct the mirrors on both sides. This will allow you to see the other cars approaching behind you from either side.
In addition, keep your car free from unwanted stuff. For this purpose, de-clutter your vehicle and make it clean and tidy. If things keep on falling over in the car, you won’t be able to concentrate on your driving.
Moreover, avoid wearing bulky jackets while driving. This is because this type of clothing can restrict your movement and make it hard to drive your vehicle efficiently. You may also get nervous, and the temperature of your body may also increase, making it uncomfortable for you to drive.
By taking into consideration all of the tips mentioned above, it won’t be hard for you to learn how to get confidence in driving. The first thing to keep in mind is to stay calm when sitting on the driving seat. By staying relaxed, you can ensure better coordination of mind and body.
Furthermore, confidence comes with practice. Hence, make sure to drive daily for a specific period. Regular practice for a couple of weeks can give you the confidence to take your car on the highway or even on motorways.