Besides the physical techniques we have spoken about in our previous blog posts there are others that good instructors will use instinctively. The first of these is laughter. A few good jokes can make the driving experience more pleasant and less stressful. While driving could be a matter of life and death the process of learning will not be helped by making it so serious. To laugh together at a mistake and then to ask how can we improve on that mistake next time will do so much more to aid learning than any criticism.
The process of laughing is good for us. It increases our oxygen levels which in turn leads to greater alertness and memory retention. Some jokes may not get a belly laugh but a lightened mood helps reduce stress whilst driving. One of our young pupils summed driving instructor Liam up brilliantly. She took great delight in telling Liam that his jokes were as bad as her dads and that he told the same ones each week. Needless to say, that didn’t stop him.
Occasionally, as instructors, we come across pupils who don’t respond well humour and this is okay. It’s our job to respond to these pupils in a manner that’s appropriate for them. If they’re stressed and don’t respond to humour, we suggest belly breathing, shaking or chewing. We find what helps them and what will help them in their driving career.
Whether you’re learning now or you passed your test 30 years ago. How you learn to drive and the techniques you pick up on those lessons mould you as a driver. We encourage our students to find stress-busting techniques that work for them and will continue working for them.