3 Tricks for Reducing Driving Test Stress

    Posted by Ben Davidson about 5 months ago

    No one really wants to be the person who only passes their driving test on the fifth attempt, and yet that does happen to people, and not so rarely, either.

    There are plenty of things can go wrong when you’re trying to pass your driving test, and there are plenty of reasons why you might fail the test. Of course, you can fail the test because you weren’t properly prepared, and hadn’t practised the manoeuvres and memorised the rules carefully enough.

    Or, you may be put in a ridiculous situation by someone else driving recklessly, and fail your test on a technicality, as a result.

    Easily the most frustrating reason to fail your test, however, is because of simple stress.

    Many people drive really well in practice, just before the test, but then feel the overwhelming waves of stress and anxiety wash over them when the examiner is there. Suddenly, their driving isn’t anything like it should be (or was yesterday) and it’s difficult to properly pay attention to anything.

    Stress can definitely make you fail your driving test, but it doesn’t have to. Here are some tips for your test, that can reduce the stress and anxiety.

    Eat plenty of carbs beforehand

    Stress, as a physiological phenomenon in the body, is largely rooted in the actions of the “stress hormones” cortisol and adrenaline.

    It’s these hormones that make you feel like the world is shaking, and like someone is waiting right around the corner to murder you. When your heart is thumping and your hands are trembling, you can be sure your stress hormone levels are through the roof.

    Eating a good, filling meal helps to reduce these stress hormones – but the real star here is carbohydrates.

    Carbohydrates directly inhibit stress hormone production, and put you in a relaxed state instead. So, hit the pasta and bread hard before your test. Just leave enough of a gap that you’re not experiencing a food coma in the car.

    Question yourself internally about why you’re so stressed, and remind yourself that the test isn’t a life or death situation

    A good practice for helping yourself to deal with stress and anxiety, is to get into the habit of constantly questioning yourself internally.

    Literally begin an internal dialogue with yourself. Ask yourself “what’s the problem here?” And then work to rebut every point that your subconscious mind throws up.

    Remind yourself that the test isn’t a life or death situation, and try to have a sense of humour about it. If you can laugh it off, you’re far less likely to be crushed by the weight of anxiety and stress.

    Get a good night’s sleep beforehand

    It’s much easier to be stressed when you haven’t had enough sleep, and failing to get enough sleep will also make you a worse and more dangerous driver, in general.

    Telling you to get enough sleep the night before your driving test might sound a bit like telling a kid to get enough sleep the night before Christmas – impossible.

    All the same, getting enough slumber can make a real difference in your stress and anxiety levels the next day. So, eat enough, have a warm bath, and hit the sack as early as you can.

    how to deal with driving test

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