How many times have you arrived at a destination only to realize you have no memory of your drive to get there? Distracted driving is a dangerous habit and it goes beyond using a cell phone or changing radio stations while the vehicle is in motion. Applied Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment and fully aware of your surroundings. Why not add the practice of Mindful Driving to your list of to-dos in the new year?
Focus your attention on more than your route. Be aware of the road itself and of cars, trucks, cyclists, and pedestrians around you. Observe your surroundings, but don’t allow yourself to be Mentally entangled in circumstances over which you have no control (like the aggressive driving of others on the road).
Turn off the radio, books on tape, podcasts, and playlists. Listen to the sounds of driving: your car’s tires making contact with the road, the revving of your car’s engine, the clicking of your car’s turn signal, and other cars around you.
Take slow and deliberate breaths, using your diaphragm to draw breath in and out. If you find yourself dwelling on any one particular thought, acknowledge the thought, let it go, and refocus on the present and your immediate surroundings.
While we can’t totally eliminate hazards on the road through our own actions, we can practice behaviors to make ourselves better drivers: practicing mindful driving may decrease the risk that you cause a car crash and increase your ability to respond calmly to conditions which might normally induce anxiety, like heavy traffic. If you are hurt in a crash caused by someone else during your mindful travels, contact the Colorado Springs Injury Attorneys at Rosenbaum & Wootton, P.C. to schedule a consultation so we can help you recover for your injury claim from the responsible parties by calling 719.634.0102 or by clicking on this link to schedule your FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION.