If you struggle with driving anxiety or driving test nerves you may well have wondered if hypnotherapy can help. Joline Saunders is the hypnotherapist we approached about this issue and Joline has created two hypnosis tracks especially for users of Confident Drivers which are available with a Confident Drivers subscription.
Try the driving confidence self-hypnosis audio if you feel nervous in your driving lessons or if you are a nervous driver who has already passed their test. Or if you have your driving test booked and the nerves are beginning to kick in start to listen regularly to the driving test nerves hypnosis audio in the run up to your test. Many of our subscribers listen to our audios the night before a driving test to calm nerves and get a good nights sleep.
Go to our help for learner driver nerves page to learn more about what else is included in a subscription alongside our driving self-hypnosis audios. We asked Joline for her top tips for driving test nerves to use alongside hypnotherapy and here is her blog:
Joline's tips for driving test nerves and how hypnosis can help
I remember my driving test like it was yesterday - it was possibly the most nerve-racking experience of my life. I wanted to pass so badly. I wanted the freedom it would give me. I am completely amazed that I did pass as I literally was on the verge of a panic attack throughout what felt like hours. Which is why I want to share my tips for driving test nerves. When you are that nervous, making mistakes is so much easier to do as the reasoning, logical part of your brain is taken over by the emotional part. You mind switches to 'fight or flight' mode where you instinctively look for dangers and are on high alert - hence increased breathing and heart rate as your body prepares you to run or fight the foreseen danger. It's very difficult to be calm and methodical when you mind switches to this high-intensity state. Everything you've learned and practised seems to temporarily vanish from your mind and it's easy to become absorbed in thoughts about what might go wrong instead of focusing on what you want to happen.
Breathing: One of the first things that changes when we are anxious about something is our breathing. When we are nervous, we naturally begin to breathe more rapidly and usually, those breaths are shallow, chest breaths with the emphasis on breathing in. This is the body preparing you to fight or flight by increasing oxygen delivery to your muscles. However, the good news is you can help relax your mind and body very quickly by consciously breathing in the opposite way with the 7-11 breathing technique. If you were to practice for five minutes, maybe twice a day, consciously breathing in for the count of 7, then out for the count of 11, you will notice how quickly you calm down. You don't have to count but the important thing is that your out-breaths are longer than your in-breaths. Extending the exhale mimics the breathing of a relaxed, calm person and by doing this we are sending the message to our unconscious mind that all is well and to be calm. If you were to practice this a few times a day for a week, you find yourself naturally applying it when you feel yourself tensing up and quickly calming down. It's simple. no one needs to know you are doing it, yet it's very effective. You can even do it while you are driving to stay calm.
Self Talk: That internal chatter that we all have narrates how we feel. If we are telling ourselves, 'I'm going to fail', 'I'm going to make a mistake' etc, it activates anxious feelings. Instead get into the habit of telling yourself positive statements, such as 'I will pass easily', 'I've practised and I am a competent driver', 'I can do this'. Whatever feels right for you. Positive self-talk really can change how you feel, and the better you feel, the calmer and more confident you are, which means you are more likely to find the driving test easy to pass. Practise Ensure you've had plenty of practice and feel confident in your driving abilities as much as possible. The more you practise doing things correctly, the more your mind begins to absorb your learnings as an automatic behaviour and everything feels easy and natural. Remember when you were younger and you were learning to tie your shoelaces? It seemed really difficult at first but you practised and now you do it without thinking.
Mental Rehearsal: As well as doing physical practice, mentally rehearsing your driving test is a very powerful thing to do. Your brain reacts to your imagination as if it were real, so the more you imagine your driving test going exactly as you want it, the more likely that is going to happen in reality. Just take a few minutes each day to close your eyes and relax then imagine watching a movie of yourself during your test, with everything happening perfectly. Then imagine stepping into that movie, and being there, seeing out of your own eyes and imagine the whole process while associated, going perfectly well. The hypnosis audio included in this programme is designed to help you install a positive outcome into your unconscious minds - so that you will automatically and naturally feel calm and confident in your driving test. If you can do, listen to it often.
Joline Saunders has written this guest blog and is the creator of the two hypnotherapy audios for driving confidence and driving test nerves which are included in the membership area of the website. Joline works from a clinic Moreton-in-Marsh in the beautiful Cotswolds and also online by Skype or Zoom to work with her on a one-to-one basis visit her website. You can read more from Joline on the About Us page.
Now that you know more about Joline's top tips for driving test nerves you can also find more ideas for how to manage driving test nerves in our Ultimate Guide to Driving Test Nerves. You can access Joline's hypnotherapy audios for driving test nerves and driving confidence with a learner driver subscription
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What others are saying
It's great to have a website offering fantastic techniques to assist with the challenges of driving. The website recognises the fact that learning to drive can be stressful and there are strategies to help with this. The website's name, 'CONFIDENT Drivers' is what a learner is aspiring to be, so it's very positive. The techniques also apply to building general confidence in all walks of life, so useful again. Thank you!
I was so pleased when my instructor signed me up for Confident Driver. I loved the hypnosis sessions & I recently passed first time with one fault. Recommend 100%
Confident drivers has been a really useful tool in changing my attitude to the driving test. I hadn't recognised just how much my negative thoughts about my ability rather than my actual driving ability have been holding me back and putting me off. I particularly liked the quick fix section that gives you strategies to calm down just before the test!
Stress Management Subscription For Learner Drivers
If you would like some additional help and stress management resources to help you tackle your driving test nerves or improve driving confidence then our subscriptions are created by leading industry experts especially for you.
What is included:
Four relaxation audios
Three ways to use imagery techniques
A range of breathing exercises and a breathing audio
Positive self-talk tools and techniques to manage negative thinking
Four TFT Meridian tapping videos for different emotions and feelings
A range of Coaching tools and techniques to help plan ahead and change your driving mindset
Two hypnotherapy audios specifically tailored for Driving Confidence and Driving Test Nerves.
You will also get a SIX Week Introduction to Mindfulness course - learning skills you can use in stressful situations throughout your life.
These plans are created specifically for individual drivers, you can find out more details on our learner drivers page. We also have a range of group plans created for driving instructors, you can find more details on our ADI page.
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