Understanding the 3 driving states of mind

Ever since we’ve been graced with the privilege of driving since the age of 16, most of our driving styles and techniques have evolved and adapted to the ecosystem out on the pavement. Here’s a different concept to mull over – have you ever thought about how you think while driving?

Your state of mind has a significant impact on how well you operate your vehicle – and the subsequent safety that will ensue for those around you. Understanding how we are thinking or reacting can help us avoid some very negative motoring experiences. There are three types of mindsets we migrate to while driving: the child, parent or adult states of mind. It’s important to be able to identify which state of mind you are driving in and how to modify your behaviour to make you a safer driver.

1. Child State

The child state of mind essentially means that we are neglecting our core responsibilities needed when operating two tons of steel. Any driver can fall victim to this state of mind. This ‘child-like playfulness’ could result in speeding or racing with other cars, or blasting music with one hand out the window while you daydream. Either way, everyone slips into this mentality and it’s important to be cognizant of it or doom to repeat it.

2. Parent State

The “parent” state of mind is one of the most common mindset among drivers. Under this mentality, the driver is out to enforce their version of the rules of the road – similar to how they would impose their values to their children. All that’s achieved in situations where a motorist is trying to teach others how to drive their way is just putting him or herself in immediate danger. Motorists can’t teach others how to drive from inside their own vehicle. This is usually the onset of road rage and can lead to.

3. Adult State

Every driver needs to remain in the “adult” state of mind while driving. Doing so will allow you to focus on the most dangerous task we undertake everyday: driving. In the “adult” state, we are constantly analyzing our driving situation and we strive to make the task of driving easier for all the motorists around us. Conduct a self-analysis while driving and take a critical look at where your mental energy and focus are directed.

Anyone who has been involved in a car accident knows that the effects can be far reaching. Severe injuries can happen as a result of even a seemingly minor accident, and the losses you experience, both physically and financially, can last for years. Our lawyers at Harris Law have the experience to get you the compensation you deserve; we’ll even conduct our own investigation to determine who is at fault. 


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