Why Emotions Play an Important Role in Learning to Drive

Emotions, why do they play such a big role in driving?

Emotions in your body can alter your physical state.

Emotions such as fear, anger, guilt, contempt, and embarrassment precede feelings. The feeling is what you associate to the emotion.

Feelings are mental associations and reactions to emotions, and are subjective being influenced by personal experience, beliefs, and memories.

A feeling is a mental portrayal of what is going on in your body when you have an emotion and is the byproduct of your brain perceiving and assigning meaning to the emotion.

Your emotions and feelings play a powerful role in how you experience and interact with the world because they are the driving force behind many behaviors, helpful and unhelpful.

Emotions can effect the way we drive or react to everyday situations for example other drivers.

Often learners feel harassed by other drivers, whether they are behind, ahead, or at a junction.

Although other drivers can be attributed to why a learner might stall their vehicle at a traffic light, they are not the problem.

It starts with the learners emotions. The learner might feel fear in this situation, they become afraid of stalling the vehicle, which they assume will result in anger or contempt from other drivers.

The pressure on the learner to get the vehicle moving now becomes huge, and if the learner panics when the lights change, they will rush with the controls resulting in a stall.

It’s difficult for the instructor in this situation, because no matter how hard they try to calm and reassure the learner, the anxiety the learner feels forces them to rush and the vehicle stalls again.

So, thereafter every time the learner is in the same situation they feel anxious, and their focus is on stalling rather than smooth use of the control’s to get the car moving

So in this situation the emotion the learner feels is associated with a memory from an earlier mistake made, but it can also be from a similar experience passed from person to person.

In a conversation with others in a group, one of the members tells the story of how they stalled the vehicle virtually every time the came to a stop.

Their heart would start pounding, their breathing would become rapid and sallow, and they would actually start sweating at the thought of having to get the vehicle moving.

In fact it got so bad that it forced them to stop their driving lessons because the fear of stalling became greater than the desire to drive.

So, experiences from other people can be so powerful that it can often be passed on to others.

So how do they overcome the feeling they get from the emotion?

This is easier said than done, but by understanding the difference and becoming aware of your emotions and feelings, you will learn to respond rather than react and driving will magically become more under your control.

So, the next time you are stationary at traffic lights and you start to become anxious, you can respond to the feeling and become determined to focus on using the controls smoothly resulting with the vehicle pulling away easily.

When you master the skill of choosing your feelings and behaviors, life behind the wheel will settle down, and you’ll become a calmer, and  less stressed driver.

 

#emotionaldrivers

 

 

 

 

First time driving test pass for Jamie Pickering

First time driving test pass for Jamie Pickering, he nailed it from the start and never looked back!

 

A Huge Congratulations to Jamie Pickering for passing his driving test first time on Friday 24th January 2020 with just two minor faults!!
The 24th January is a day Jamie will always remember as the day he earned his wheels.


Elite instructor Rob Caton said: Jamie got a really demanding test route but definitely rose to the challenge and passed with flying colours!!
Well done matey and thanks for the huge jar of humbugs!!
My students know what I like!!
We would like to wish Jamie a happy safe driving future from all the team at Elite Driving School

#firsttimedrivingtestpasshull

7 Top tips for people training to become a driving instructor

We frequently get asked for top tips to focus on when training to become a driving instructor.

I have put together 7 top training tips which will make sure your focus is on maximising  your time more effectively, while getting the most out of your training and hopefully keeping more money in your pocket.

  1. Have a plan with targets

Have a plan which includes a realistic deadline for each area of the training program, which should be worked out by how much time you can commit to training each week or month.

I find that if starting from scratch, you should allow 4 weeks for your DBS check to be returned, then a further 2 weeks wait for your DVSA reference number to arrive so that you can book your part one theory exam, which generally has a waiting time of 4 weeks.

2. Working out your training agenda

Now that you know that you could be waiting 10 weeks on basically just getting registered and booking your first test, don’t waste a moment of that time, because it’s the ideal time to start your preparation for ADI part one theory test.

10 weeks is a sufficient amount of time to read the books, & study your part one course material.

If you can manage to put aside one and a half hours for training, four times a week, in 10 weeks you will have clocked up 60 hours of study time.

Use a part one training program because will give you a structure to follow so that you are not wasting time.

3. Don’t wait until you pass one test BEFORE YOU start training for the next

While you are studying for the part one you might want to book a part two driving assessment.

The benefit of the assessment is that your trainer will give you a report of your driving performance which will include areas of your driving where improvements can be made.

This means you’ve got plenty of time to start working on creating good habits every time you go for a drive in your own car, while at the same time improving your knowledge with the theory element of the course.

This will save you time a money when it’s comes to taking part two training, and again allows you to book your part two test as soon as you’ve passed the theory test, which will give you another goal to aim for.

Once again you can start preparation for the part three instructional element of the course while practicing for the practical test, so not a moment of your time is being frittered away twiddling your thumbs.

4. Don’t waste you valuable time in the training vehicle

It’s common for people training on the part three instructional module to waste time writing out their lesson plan in the car with the trainer.

As a qualified instructor you will already have your lesson plan in place before arriving for your student, which means you’ll have the aims and objectives for the lesson in place, with the goals you want to acheive and the route you intend to use.

There’s no wasted time for the student either because you are prepared, and can immediately start the lesson with a conversation.

The conversation will cover the previous lesson, recapping on area’s where they made good progress as well as discussing points where you both feel improvements can be made, before talking through the the lesson plan in detail.

You should follow the same routine before you get into the training vehicle, where you’ll then have time to then discuss your lesson plan with the trainer before putting it into practice.

5. Keep in contact with the training team

Do be a stranger while training. It’s common for trainee’s to disappear off the radar during training especially while studying for the theory element.

Without regular contact with the training organisation, or trainer you won’t have anyone to make you accountable for studying.

So, keep in touch, let them know how far forward you are with the training program, and if you need help ask for it, or if you have questions ask them.

6. Book tests in advance

Some training schools will book your test on your behalf, while others will leave you do book them yourself.

You can waste a lot of time waiting for tests, especially ADI tests because generally there is just one examiner at your local test centre who is responsible, for all ADI tests.

So book them as soon as you can, choose a date you feel you can complete the training for that element of the course and, I would recommend talking with your trainer before making any bookings for their advice.

7. Go on a trainee PDI licence

The part three training will be mostly role play with your trainer, with some full licence holders thrown in for practice.

You might be in a fortunate position where you have a good training vehicle of your own that you can fit dual controls into.

This allows you to take friends and family out for practice (obviously without charge).

However not everyone can afford the expense of buying a car for practice, so in this case I would recommend going on to a trainee licence with a driving school.

The school will provide a training vehicle, insurance and pupils. It’s hands on experience because you are teaching real learners, and you can earn while you learn.

But don’t expect a full time wage, because a trainee licence only lasts for six months and it’s purpose is to get practice before taking your part three test.

So expect to pay the school for the car, their costs, and customers plus additional training while on the trainee licence.

If you are working full time in a job while training then a trainee licence might not be an option for you because of cost, unless the school can provide a vehicle on a part time basis.

In this instance you can do a couple of lessons on a weekend and the school gets the full fee from the student for the loan of the vehicle.

Another option is that you might be lucky enough to live in an area where car rental companies hire out dual controlled driving instructor training vehicles on an hourly basis, complete with insurance.

If you are on a trainee licence you can take people for lessons in return of them paying the car hire fees and fuel, so you both benefit.

 

If you need any advice or just want to chat about training to become a driving instructor, or what it’s like working as an instructor please call Kev on 03332 004130

 

#trainingtobecomeadrivinginstructor

 

What do you do on your first driving lesson as a new driver?

Your first driving lesson as a new driver, and this is what you can expect to learn.

 

Driving instructors follow the Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency’s (DVSA) syllabus for driving cars and light vans. This syllabus aims to provide a structured approach to gaining the skills, knowledge and understanding to be a safe and responsible road-user in this class of vehicle.

The first thing you will learn is about your vehicle and it’s controls which we covered in an earlier blog.

In this blog we are going to cover moving the vehicle away from the kerb followed by pulling up alongside the kerb to stop for the first time.

Sound easy?

Well it might look easy when done by an experienced driver, but as a novice it’s your first driving challenge.

Let’s look at a system that driving instructors use to help you grasp the concept of moving the car.

The system is called POM which stands for Preparation, observation and manoeuvre. Each part of the system is broken down into its own elements making it easier to remember the sequence.

Some people new to learning might already have an idea of how to move a car and should be given the opportunity to explain how they would accomplish the task and the risks involved.

By doing so helps the instructor to gain and understanding of a student’s knowledge.

But let’s look at how to use POM to assist you in the task of moving the vehicle.

So, the instructor first role is to explain about gauging the vehicles distance from the kerb so that the student can steer away from the kerb and return the vehicle to the kerb to stop safely, without damaging the vehicle.

This literally involves finding a reference point that the learner can use as a basic guide. A common method is to note where the kerb touches the cars body work or windscreen. In the picture below of a stationary vehicle the kerb can be seen just left of the fixing point on the passenger side (left hand) wiper blade.

First driving lessons the kerb

This means that if we steer the vehicle to the right (away from the kerb) the kerb will move further away from the driver towards the left of the wiper blade, as we steer left, the kerb will move back towards the original starting position.

The skill is not letting the kerb move to the right beyond the original position on the wiper blade, because this will result in striking the kerb with the vehicles left front wheel.

 

your first driving lesson

POM: Preparation:

Preparing the vehicle ready to drive.

Firstly, check that handbrake is on and that the gear lever is in the neutral position. Give the gear lever a good rattle both right and left, get used to knowing the difference between the car being in gear and in neutral.

Next, follow the sequence, depress the clutch pedal to the floor, Select first gear using the palm of the hand, set a tad of gas in other words slightly increase the engine speed, bring the clutch steadily upwards until you reach the biting point. The biting point is where the engine is taking the strain of the vehicles weight. You should hear the engine taking the strain and maybe even feel the front of the vehicle lift very slightly.

If ether engine noise or vehicle lift sound or feel excessive, slightly depress the clutch by the thickness of a one-pound coin and continue doing so until you feel the engine has the strain without putting it under stress.

If you can’t feel the biting point, then depress the clutch to the floor and try again.

Once at biting point keep both feet still and move on to observations.

What is biting point?

Imagine you’re in the iron man challenge and one exercise is pulling a truck. Your first priority is to take the weight of the truck by taking up the slack on the rope around your body.

Now you know that an enormous amount of effort is going to be required to get the truck moving and that it will take small steps at the start until you find momentum, which is when it gets easier to move the truck.

first driving lesson biting point

Well this is the same for the vehicle’s engine.

The biting point is talking the strain, and then a slight upward movement of the clutch is required to move the vehicle, but pressure must remain on the pedal until the vehicle gets momentum with forward movement, then you should steadily lift the pedal until your foot can come off the pedal.

 

Your first driving lesson

Observations.

Next at biting point keep both feet still until you’ve checked all around the car that it’s safe to move. You are checking for any road users which includes cyclists, motor cyclists, cars, vans’ busses, lorry’s and pedestrians in the road.

You should start your observations by looking over your left shoulder into the blind spot, which is the area to the side of the vehicle that cannot be seen through either the interior mirror or door mirror.

Then move your head clockwise until you can see the blind area clearly over your right shoulder, while taking in to account anything between the two points, and making sure you check all three mirrors during the process.

Your first driving lesson

Manoeuvre:

Now that you can see it’s safe to move the vehicle from the kerb, you can release the handbrake.

Next lift the clutch slightly up until the car starts to move and then maintain pressure on the clutch pedal.

Increase the pressure to the gas to give the engine more power, as the car moves steer right 10 minutes past twelve until the car is approximately one meter away from the kerb, then steer left 10 minutes before twelve, finally centring the steering wheel once the car is parallel to the kerb and in the centre of the your lane.

By this point the vehicle should know have momentum so steadily let the clutch fully up and take your foot off it.

You are now under control with the engine and you can increase pressure to the gas pedal to increase the vehicles speed and reduce pressure to slow the vehicle.

So, remember POM 

Preparation = Clutch down, 1st gear, slight gas, clutch to biting point.

Observations = start by looking over you left should, move your head clockwise until you can see over your right shoulder, checking every area between the two points.

Manoeuvre = Release handbrake, clutch up slightly, increase gas, steer away from the kerb and bring the vehicle parallel to the kerb, clutch steadily all the way up.

 

On the Next Blog we will talk about bringing the car back towards the kerb and stopping.

 

#firstdrivinglesson

 

What does passing the driving test mean to you?

Passing the driving test is a big milestone in most people lives, and it opens their world up to a whole lot of possibilities.

 

Jack Hadfield passed the driving test on Monday 28th September 2019, a date he’ll never forget.

passing the driving test
Congratulations to Jack Hadfield

Jack passed the driving test with just one minor fault from an otherwise clean sheet, which was an excellent result.

Jack has a car sat waiting in his drive ready for him to drive, so the pressure to pass was on, and cool Jack didn’t disappoint.

Jack’s at the university and will soon get a placement which means he can drive himself rather than wait on other to get him there.

That’s just one of the many benefits Jack’s got to look forward to for many years to come.

So, if you want to join Jack and get your full driving licence, then book your driving lessons with an Elite driving instructor, and you’ll be driving before you know it.

 

#passingthedrivingtest

 

Three driving gadgets every driver should have…

Our top Three driving gadgets every driver should have in their car…

 

Driving gadgets that can help improve your driving, your safety and protect you from harassment & fraudsters.

driving gadgets

You can’t deny that the UK’s roads are littered with bad drivers, fraudsters and pedestrians that take silly risk’s.

And then you’ve got new road layouts who you can thank the highways department for.

Many of which challenge even the most experienced drivers to figure out how to use them safely.

The problem with road designers is they assume all road users are familiar with the area, and therefore understand the road markings.

Then of course you’ve got traffic police with speed camera’s as well as static camera’s that has drivers jumping on the brakes at the risk of being rear ended.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that camera’s shouldn’t be used to stop speeding and improve road safety, but a better solution is needed.

Many drivers who have attended a speed awareness course do so to avoid penalty points on their licences, most of these drivers aren’t hell bend on breaking the law.

They simply don’t know the speed limit of the roads they are driving on, or speed due to a lack of concentration or awareness.

Even those drivers who are familiar with their surroundings might not be confident enough to tell you the speed limit of the road they are travelling on.

So, what gadgets are their on the market that can help improve the situation?

These are a few of our top picks:

  1. Speed awareness gadgets. These devices give live updates of the speed limit of the road you are travelling on, and if you go over the limit some systems warn you to slow down.

They even work with variable speeding limits which are on the increase, and smart motorways.

As well as static cameras these device’s also detect mobile speed cameras from a distance giving the driver enough warning to slow down early, opposing to jumping on the brakes and potentially causing accidents.

2.  In car dash camera’s are not only good for insurance claims but they also come in handy for other unforeseen situations.

In a world where fraudsters think nothing of jumping on your bonnet, laying down in front of your car, or even reversing in to you and claiming you hit them, dash cams provide valuable evidence of their crime.

They can also capture valuable footage of drivers harassing other road users and idiots who think it’s cool to chuck stuff at passing cars.

3. Satellite navigation systems. The world has moved on a long way from the days of drivers reading maps by the road side trying to figure out where they made a wrong turn.

Good quality navigation systems help you arrive at you destination on time and less stressed. They also help direct you around traffic hold ups, and warn you of speed restrictions.

 Stay safe. 

#drivinggadgets

Do you dream of passing the driving test?

For many of our students passing the driving test became a reality in September 2019.

We would like to congratulate all of our customers for passing the driving test in September.

Below are just a few of those that we managed to grab a photo of to witness this amazing achievement.

The others where sooooo excited that we couldn’t get keep up with them to get a good picture. 🙂

But, there’s one thing you can be certain of, and that is they are going to have more fun, more opportunity, and a better quality of life from being able to drive.

Megan Brown passed her driving test 19th September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Mark Langton

Megan passed first time, even after a challenging test route. Megan coped  very well and had a superb drive.

assing the driving test megan brown
Megan Brown

 

Chris Annis passed his driving test 18th September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Stuart McClean

It was Chris’s first attempt at the driving test and he had a great drive with just a couple of minor marks.

His brother Ben passed with us a couple of years ago so Chris came to us on recommendation.

Passing the driving test chris annis
Chris Annis

 

Jakob Orlowski passed his driving test 27th September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Phil Harrison

Jakob passed with just one minor fault on an otherwise perfect drive from a very conscientious driver.

passing the driving test Jakob Orlowski
Jakob Orlowski

 

Amanda Gould passed her driving test September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Phillip Hardcastle.

Amanda passed her driving test at the first attempt after a very competent drive.

Amanda said having a driving license will be really helpful to her, because now she can drive herself to and from work, so she will no longer have to ask people for a lift or rely on buses being on time.

Passing the driving test Amanda gould
Amanda Gould

 

Ellie Jubb passed her driving test September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Mark Langton

Ellie passed her test today with just 2 minors. She is off to University in a few weeks to study Dentistry so hopefully she is filling over the moon with her pass!

Passing the driving test Ellie Jubb
Ellie Jubb

 

Abbey Jenkinson passed her driving test at her FIRST attempt in  September 2019 with the help of Elite instructor Phillip Hardcastle.

Abbey said passing the driving test and being able to drive will give her more independence, meaning she can now go wherever she wants, whenever she wants.

Passing the driving test abby jenkinson
Abby Jenkinson

 

Alishea Jackson passed her driving test at her FIRST attempt 7th October 2019 with the help of Elite instructor John McGonagle

John said: You took to driving with ease and passed in a very short time. Its been a pleasure to teach you and all the best for the future.

Passing the driving test alishea Jackson
Alishea Jackson

We would like to thank everyone for their business, and we wish them all a safe and prosperous driving future.

 

#passingthedrivingtest

Intensive driving course are they right for you?

Intensive driving course are they the best way to learn to drive?

 

What exactly is an intensive driving course?

They are concentrated lessons given over a short period of time and often (but not always) finish with a driving test.

What intensive driving course is right for you?

This is a common question most driving schools and instructors will get asked when people call to inquire about driving lessons.

Intensive driving course

To be honest it’s also a question that cannot be answered without meeting people and assessing their existing abilities.

Not one course fits all because people are at different standards when they want to go the intensive route.

They could be new drivers with no previous experience, someone with a few hours under their belt, or may be someone who’s already had a lot of previous practice.

Then you’ve also got to consider where, and who did they get their practice with.

Learner might have only practiced on car parks or private land, or they might have had 10 lessons 20 years ago and never driven since.

They might have practiced with family, friends or a professional driving instructor.

There are so many possibilities, which makes it impractical to advise on which course would suit them best.

So, where do you start?  

Theory first. Before you can book a driving test you must have a valid theory pass certificate.

Bearing in mind that an intensive driving course should end with the driving test, therefore you won’t be able to book a course without the theory.

How many lessons will you need?

If you are a new driver with no previous experience, then you should consider that the course that you think you want, might fall short on the lessons you need to get you to the standard required to pass a driving test.

If you book a course with too few hours, once the course has started the driving instructor will not have any extra space, or the time to get you to standard before the test date resulting in the driving test being cancelled.

Even if you want to take the test for experience, your instructor won’t allow it if their opinion you could damage their car, or put people at risk including themselves and the examiner.

Also, the DVSA (who are the people responsible for driving tests, and driving instructors in the UK) will not be impressed with an instructor who allows a student to take a driving test when clearly, they are not at the required standard.

It’s not showing a proper sense of responsibility!

So, the logical first step for a new driver is to take a few lessons to grasp the basics and allow the instructor time to get an idea of your capability to learn on an intensive course.

For learners with previous driving experience they should take a few assessment lessons.

If they haven’t driven for some time they will need more than just a couple of hours to pick up somewhere near to where they left off.

Of course, if they are having lessons already and what to go intensive, their instructor will already be able to advise on which course is the right fit for them.

Don’t be tempted to book a intensive driving course without an assessment, because you won’t know the standard you need to be at to pass the driving test.

Even if you think your driving is good, it makes sense to get the opinion of an expert.

Intensive driving course and driving tests!  

When can you realistically expect to start an intensive driving course?

This is where good marketing comes in to play. Intensive driving courses are big money, and companies are setting up web sites to capture people wanting to pass fast.

They advertise learn in a week on an intensive driving course, with a guaranteed test.

But what they don’t make clear is which week the course starts, so the potential customer assumes it’s next week!

But that’s rarely ever the case.

Generally there’s a waiting time to book a driving test at most of the test centres in the UK.

Over the last 3 years, test demand has increased by over 200,000 tests – with an extra 92,000 last year alone. At the start of the year there were 265 fewer driving examiners than the last time demand was this high. Between April 2008 and March 2009 the DVSA saw demand rise to 1,756,522.  Source DVSA.

Waiting times at test centers can often be 3 months plus in advance, and that can increase if examiners take holiday or take sick leave, because there’s no one to cover their test’s, and so they get cancelled.

Another reason why you can’t just book an intensive driving course for the following week is that many of these internet companies who advertise courses don’t actually have their own driving instructors working for them, they are just middlemen.

So, they advertise intensive driving courses, take your money, and then try to find an instructor who’s short of work to accept the course.

Alternatively, you’ll be offered a split course. This is where you’ll start your week intensive driving course, and then wait a further few months for a test date before going back to take a few more days training.

Driving test centres

You can get around the test waiting time by taking the driving test in another town/city where the waiting time is shorter.

The problem with doing this is the lack of knowledge about the new routes. If you’re not familiar with the area, you’re at a big disadvantage.

What is the ideal lesson length?

This differs from person to person, and also depends on how advanced you are with your lessons.

Some intensive driving courses will have you in the driving seat for 7 hours a day. For example, a 35 hour course spread over 5 days.

Even a seasoned experienced driver will cringe at the thought of driving for seven hours, even though they will have little to think about, because they are driving from memory.

Drivers in the early stage of learning might be able to concentrate for a few hours but quickly become exhausted beyond that.

Learners with good experience can focus for up to three hours but beyond that you are asking a lot from them.

Following those guidelines, and new driver taking a 35-hour driving course will need 3 weeks to complete based on a 5 day a week.

A more experienced driver taking a 15-hour driving course would only need a week to complete the course.

 

Guaranteed test pass

If someone could guarantee a driving test pass, they would be a millionaire.

A Guarantee of a test pass is a gimmick.

No one can give you this type of guarantee unless they have an hand in the outcome. It implies that they can influence the driving test and that’s not possible.

What they really mean is that they will give you *unlimited lessons and book additional *tests each time you fail until you do pass.

*Check the small print unlimited isn’t unlimited!

But you are either going to pay way over the odds for this type of course, or give up for one reason or another.

Booking an intensive driving  

Before handing over your money follow this simple guide.

  1. Pass the theory test first
  2. Take an assessment drive, or if new to driving book some lessons to get beyond the basics
  3. Agree your lesson dates and times (avoid taking more than three hours in a day unless you get a reasonable break between lessons) and test date with the course provider
  4. Read and agree to their terms of service, this should include lesson cancellation and test cancellation policy
  5. Ask for a detailed plan of the course in writing or by email for back up, and peace of mind. They will need to see your driving licence to book the driving test
  6. Confirm the instructors details, is he a franchisee of the school or an out sourced instructor, and do they conform with the course providers terms of service
  7. Once you are happy then pay them using either bank transfer or visa for proof of payment.

#intensivedrivingcourse

Bailey’s dream of driving his own car…

Well driving his own car has become a reality for Bailey Dennett after passing his driving test at his FIRST attempt!

Bailey Dennett said "I thoroughly enjoyed my lessons"

Congratulations Bailey

Bailey took his driving lessons with driving instructor Matt Howard.

Matt was really impressed with the speed at which Bailey progressed with his driving, and the dedication he put into learning.

Matt said, Bailey got really involved in his lessons, he asked lots of questions and work out situations for himself.

He’s been a great student to help and he has a fantastic attitude when it comes to driving safely.

Bailey absolutely deserves to have passed on his first attempt, and I’m chuffed to be able to share in his success.

Bailey said:

“I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Elite Driving School, my instructor, Matt was an absolutely great guy and I really  enjoyed every lesson I had with him, he provided me with all the support I could have needed for my first time pass and I’m absolutely over the moon with my result! I would recommend Elite Driving School to anyone out there hoping for a first time pass” 😀👍🎉🚘

I’m sure Bailey’s life is going to change massively now he’s able to dive for himself. He can drive for work, maybe even get a promotion.

He can get away for weekends with his mates, because the world has just become that little bit smaller for Bailey.

And, there’s no other better feeling than buying your First car, and it doesn’t really matter what it is, because it’s yours!

 

 

#drivinghisowncar

 

Driving test nerves, how can you deal with them!

Driving test nerves, could possibly be one of the biggest reasons why people fail driving tests!

 

Is there a cure for driving test nerves?

Driving test nerves

Well there’s a lot of advice available online to learner drivers who think they might suffer with driving test nerves, from hypnosis to beta blockers (you must speak to your GP about taking any kind of medication).

But do any of these methods really work?

Some of these methods will have proved successful in helping people pass their driving test, but they may not work for everyone.

Test passes in the UK

Generally, the yearly test pass statistics produced by the DVSA show a national pass rate of between 40 to 50%.

This means that at least half of the candidates taking a driving test each year are unsuccessful.

Looking at the figures, you could assume that a reasonable percentage of those candidates will have failed due to poor preparation, in other words not being at the required standard to pass a driving test at the time of taking it

If you take lessons from a professional driving instructor, and take their advice when to take the test, you should be above the required standard to pass the driving test.

However, the learners who do fail could be those who struggle with nerves on the test, and have made an error which would be out of character.

How can you deal with driving test nerves?

Those pesky nerves stop many people from doing things that they would like to do but just can’t face.

I remember once attending a sales training course. During the first day I was asked to play the character of a car salesperson, and to deal with a customer who had worked in to a car showroom.

The scenario was a role play model that took place in an empty training room, or so I thought.

The trainer finished the brief and said, “I’ll leave you both to role play the scenario and listen from outside the room to avoid distraction”.

Well, that made the exercise a lot easier knowing we were not being watched, so I settled into the role.

I greeted the customer and we started chatting about his desire to buy a new car. Everything was going quite well…

That was until half the wall opened up and at the other side was 50 people sat in a cinema like surrounding watching our performance.

Well I clammed up and struggled to make any sense of what I was saying.

It’s amazing how we can put ourselves under such pressure when you are pushed out of your comfort zone.

It wasn’t the audience that put me under pressure, they were probably sh**ing themselves waiting for their turn, especially now they knew the entire course candidates would be watching.

So, the same applies to learner drivers. On a normal driving lesson, they drive with ease and confidence, but replace the instructor with an examiner in the passenger seat and they act like a chimp trying to control a car.

The examiner isn’t the one putting them under pressure, they’re just doing their job. The candidate put’s them self under pressure!

So why does this happen?

Well I’m no expert, I’ve been in similar situations all my life, and each time i venture out of my comfort zone I act like a chimp.

But it’s the pressure you put yourself under when you are being watched or judged.

I’ve read books on the subject, watched videos and attended seminars, but I still haven’t found any conclusive evidence of one thing that works for the majority of learners.

What I have found interesting, and which might be helpful in reducing driving test nerves is the following techniques.

  1. Visualization: It works by imagining yourself in the future driving your own car. You actually have to believe that you’ve passed your driving test and driving the car you hope to get.

This is something that you’ll need to do on a daily basis, and for long enough so that you can recall that image of you driving without effort.

2. Stop the head chatter: How many times have you had an argument or conversation with someone in your head, that really isn’t real, it’s just you playing out a scenario?

Well many learners see themselves finishing the driving test and hearing the examiner mutter “sorry you’ve been unsuccessful this time”

They reply this image daily in their head as they approach test day, hoping to pass but thinking they will fail.

The problem is they reply the image so many times that their subconscious mind might believe it to be true.

The trick is to stop the head chatter. Every time you find yourself failing the test in your head stop, it and replace it with test success, and the thought of you driving your own car.

3. Don’t let others influence you with their stories: Failing a driving test isn’t cool for some people and those who fail might not actually tell you what really happened!

Their ego prevents them from accepting it’s their fault, so they might blame the examiner, or someone else caused them to fail, or it was a freak incident.

The truth is if you drive well, and don’t get any serious, or dangerous faults you’ve passed, it’s that simple.

So, take guidance from your instructor, take a MOCK driving test to see if you are at the standard required, and focus on the positives not the negatives.

 

 

You can read articles from other organisations regarding driving test nerves here

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