You may or may not be surprised at the number of people who report suffering from stress and anxiety whilst driving but there are ways to deal with it. Last week we talked about chewing gum but maybe you’re not a gum kinda person so why not try, shaking?
No, we don’t mean trembling with fear or drinking a shake (although who knows, a milkshake could help?!) What we’re talking about is the act of loosening the body. We are all familiar with how our bodies become tense and we stiffen up when we’re under stress. So, how can shaking help?
What the act of shaking should do is loosen our muscles, ligaments and joints. If we are loose we are relaxed. The process of doing this will increase oxygen to the brain which in turn, will promote alertness and memory. An NHS therapist we taught used to tell us that the therapists where she worked often came back into the staff room shaking. She implied this was as a stress relief strategy, rather than anything they had learnt from the client during therapy.
The way we have used this is sometimes we get the pupil when pulled over just to shake the stress off in the car. If you were ever at one of the local test centres and saw some idiot with his pupil doing star jumps that was most probably one of us.
One of our pupils was a teacher and knew about these types of stress-busting techniques so we went for it. Another pupil of ours when stopped at the traffic lights would bounce her legs up and down. The dance she called it. For both of them, it worked.
So next time you’re feeling stressed or anxious when driving, pull over and have a shake.