Why Overcoming Driving Anxiety Should Not be a New Year’s Resolution

by on December 22, 2014

reflect

Whether we realize it or not, the end of the year is often a time we review the year behind us while looking forward to the one ahead. The next step for many is to make a list of those notorious New Year’s resolutions that look great on paper but often fail to materialize in real life.

And why do they fail?

One reason is the lack of planning. We choose a lofty resolution, such as overcoming driving fear or driving anxiety. We then plop it on paper and wait for it to magically come true. By that time the resolution has grown into the size of Mount Everest, huge, scary and seemingly unconquerable.

So we do nothing, riddled with guilt and anxiety that we’ve failed. Or we make no resolutions at all, riddled with guilt and anxiety that we’ve done nothing to improve an issue that haunts us.

What to Do?

A sensational solution to this dilemma comes from blogger Brittany Fichter, who regularly writes about anxiety. She says to kick out the word “resolution” and instead make a “goal.” The next step is to make the plan no-fail by first realizing that you’ll probably fail along the way. You then go ahead and make a plan that leads you to your goal. Her training in education provided an outline that can work.

  • Create a goal.
  • Break the goal down into steps, aka objectives.
  • Know you may stumble or fail, but just get up and keep going.
  • Celebrate your successes.

Create a Goal

Let’s say your first choice of a goal is to overcome your driving anxiety or driving fears. That’s huge, vague and even seemingly unattainable. But you can automatically make it more attainable by changing it to something more tangible. Your new goal can be to consciously and continuously work on alleviating your driving fears. All of sudden, you’re in business.

Break the Goal into Objectives

So how can you work on this goal? Perhaps enroll in a driving safety course. Maybe join a support group. Seeking out therapy can be an option. Pick at least three objectives that point you toward that goal. The more specific and detailed the objective, the more likely you are to pursue it.

Keep Going if You Fail

So you failed the driving course, or perhaps another objective fell through. That doesn’t mean you should throw in the towel and buy a lifelong bus pass. Set a new objective or give the existing one another whirl.

Celebrate Your Successes

Booking your first therapy appointment, regular attendance at your support group and passing your driving course are all reasons to celebrate. And if you continue working on your goal, you’re going to run across dozens of others. Even the smallest steps deserve a pat on the back, so make sure you generously give them to yourself along the way.

This system gives you a concrete way to set a meaningful goal each and every year, or any time you choose. Better yet, it gives you the power to achieve it.

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