Improving Your Skills As A New Driver
05 May 2016
The feeling of passing your driving test is something really special. There’s a huge amount of relief, followed by a sudden, rushing confidence. You may be burning to feel the wind in your hair, but you should still consider the possibility that you could have failed. There’s still a lot to learn after getting your license.
Here’s some great advice for driving after you passed your test.
My first piece of advice; don’t give your friends lifts immediately. I know that this may sound harsh, and you probably owe a few people lifts as it is. However, drivers being distracted accounts for a huge amount of traffic collisions every year. Seen as you’ve just passed your test, I’ll guess that you’re fairly young. You probably know better than me that a car full of teenagers can be exceedingly distracting. Jumping from the calm, assured voice of an instructor to four of your friends can be quite a change. For your first week or so, I recommend eliminating all possible distractions by avoiding giving lifts. Any good friend will understand your motivation if you tell them.
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This brief period should help you a lot to get used to driving by yourself. If there are parts of driving that get you nervous or stressed, make sure you work on that. Nervous drivers, who are usually new drivers, are a big cause of road accidents. You need to find a way of soothing your nerves while you’re on the road if you want to be a safe driver. Some people will have a specific playlist for driving that keeps them relaxed and focussed. If you’re going to do this, make sure the music doesn’t blot out any horns or sirens. I hate to tell you, but you’re going to make some blunders when you first get out there. Now that you’ve lost the L-plates, other drivers won’t be so sympathetic! If it ever gets too much, don’t hesitate to pull over and take a breather.
Another effective tip is continuing your training and education. I know you’re probably sick to the back teeth of driving lessons. However, if you’re unsure of your skills, you should make a point to keep on learning after your test. Even a 5 dollar online traffic school can make a significant difference on the way you handle your car. Obviously driving lessons aren’t the cheapest thing in the world. As an alternative, you could take someone more experienced like a parent out with you, and ask them for feedback on your driving. Just make sure you stick to one person though. Different drivers have different habits. If you go out with your mom and she tells you to be more confident with merging, and your dad tells you you should be waiting for a gap, it will only confuse things.
I hope these tips help you with becoming a more confident driver. My final piece of advice is to never consider yourself an expert! Driving is a life skill that you should never stop improving.