How Busy Moms (and Dads) Can Practice Mindful Driving to Avoid Accidents

Parents juggling busy schedules know all too well the challenge of staying focused while driving, especially when shuttling their child from one activity to another. Along the way, you might receive work calls, messages from pals, and simultaneously, you’re likely scrolling through the car’s infotainment system to find your top pick of a Taylor Swift tune. With all these balls in the air, it’s quite surprising that more parents aren’t involved in a car accident on a weekly basis.

The sad fact is that all it takes is one accident to ruin your day, and if there’s an injury involved to you or a passenger, it can potentially ruin years of your life. Says car accident lawyer, Michael J. Gopin, it’s an unfortunate reality that no matter how cautious and responsible you are behind the wheel, there will be times you cannot protect yourself from careless drivers. On occasion, that careless and distracted driver might be yourself.

But a serious car accident can leave you with overwhelming expenses and devastating injuries. This is why you need to hire the best lawyer you can to represent you in a court of law and to make certain you receive the financial compensation you deserve so that you and your family can heal, anxiety free.

With this clearly in mind, what can be done to avoid accidents in the first place? Mindful driving is an effective technique that can help you pay full attention and remain in the present while navigating the road. According to a recent report by Health Believe, if you’ve ever experienced the strange if not unsettling feeling of arriving home from your afternoon commute without a single recollection of the drive, then you are not being mindful of the road.

The phenomenon of not paying attention to your driving is said to be more common than you might imagine. It also stresses the importance of being fully attentive to the road while you’re driving. 

That said, here’s how busy moms (and dads) can practice mindful driving to avoid accidents.

Defining Mindful Driving

Mindful driving is said to involve being fully aware of your surroundings and being fully present while driving your vehicle. To make mindful driving work for you and your safety, you need to eliminate all distractions from your mind, and focus only on the here and now or, the present moment, if you will.

By making a conscious effort to practice the techniques involved in mindful driving, you will automatically enhance your safety while on the road. You will also develop a deeper connection with your vehicle operating experience.

There’s Power in External Awareness Meditation

 Another useful technique for practicing the mindful driving technique is external awareness meditation. This is a variety of meditation that demands directing your full attention to the external environment. It’s important that you observe everything you notice on the road ahead of you. Here are some ways to successfully apply external awareness meditation while you drive: 

Sight: This requires paying full attention to the visual stimuli around you such as traffic lights, road signs, and other vehicles sharing the road.

Sound: You need to listen to the soundscape of the environment in which you are driving. Pay attention to the hum of the engine, the possible sound of sirens blaring in the near distance, and the honking of horns.

Touch: Pay attention to the physical sensations you will naturally experience while you drive. These include the vibrations of engine, the pressure of the steering wheel, the feel of the air on your face if the window is open, or the air conditioning or heat against your skin.

Keep in mind that you need to be aware of those moments when your mind goes out of focus on external stimuli. It means you are in a state of rest, and it is said to allow you to observe the background of your overall awareness.

The Safety Benefits of Mindful Driving

Says Health Believe, practicing mindful driving techniques will offer you numerous benefits when it comes to your safety and well-being, and the safety of your passengers, especially if they are your children. Here are a few of these benefits:

Improved Attention: Since you will be eliminating most distractions inside and outside the vehicle and focusing on the present driving moment, you will naturally enhance your attention span along with your responsiveness to any hazards or potential dangers on the road ahead.   

Stress Reduction: Mindful driving will assist with alleviating the anxiety and stress naturally associated with driving such as aggressive behavior from other drivers and frustration due to traffic jams.

Enhanced Safety: When you are fully attentive and present as you drive, you will be better equipped to react to unexpected dangerous situations. You will also be better at avoiding accidents while ensuring the safety of you, your precious passengers, and others. 

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