How it began

How I Developed Driving Anxiety

Every story is different. Some develop it from stress, others from just being overwhelmed by the amount of traffic on the streets… I got it from a traumatic experience. I was in the process of buying my first house, I had a new born baby and I was working long days. Anyone with a kid can tell you that you do not get good sleep until they are around 4 years old. I had been working 16 hour days and not sleeping at night. After about 3 months of this while on my way to work I needed to pick up something from the corner store. I got out of my car and everything went silent. I got light headed and I felt myself about to pass out. I remembered from watching a tv show that if you feel like you are going to pass out, cough. So I started coughing and holding onto the car door. A guy walking out of the store looked at me like I had just threw up or something… He was no help. I gained control of myself and drove back to my office. I called my wife and told her that I did not feel well and that I was going to take a short nap. I slept for about 4 hours and tried to drive home. I was still woozy, so I kept pulling over into shopping plazas until I made it home. This feeling went on for about 6 months, but all the while I was still going to work and not sleeping well. I had a family to support and I had a house to pay for.

After months of dealing with this I began getting nervous every time I had to drive somewhere.

  • What if I pass out while driving.
  • If I do feel the sensation, can I get off the road in time to recover?

These thoughts began to dominate my everyday routine. I would avoid red lights, I would stay in the lane closest to the sidewalk so I could pull over. I did not drive during rush hour. If I did run into a traffic jam I would just pull over until it cleared. I hated construction zones and areas where workers would stop traffic. Loud noises would really rattle me. So ambulances, police cars, motorcycles or even college kids playing their music would affect me. I was in bad shape.

This is my journey.

By reading my story, you will see how I coped and how I eventually got over being scared to drive. You can get over driving anxiety also by learning my methods and implementing them.