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Life in the fast lane: It’s time to take stock when getting behind the wheel

What do you think about when you sit behind the wheel? Where you’re going? How late you are? Who are you meeting when you get there?

Do you ever take the time to take a breath and think about the fact that the act of getting in a car and driving somewhere requires a lot of mental energy and concentration?

I know I don’t. I mean, the world we live in is a fast paced one after all and I’m just out here trying to get from A to B. But, with another holiday season (and holiday road toll) now behind us, I’ve started to think a lot more about what really happens when we get behind the wheel.

With all the technology accessible to us today, the way we drive seems to be a little outdated. The whole process hasn’t really adapted to the way we live our lives.

Something which is of great concern to me, the more and more I think about it. Driving is one of the few things we do that requires our full attention. Not only are we meant to be watching what we’re doing, but watching what those around us are doing and hopefully (and simultaneously) trying to  balance the two.

But let’s be honest. Our brains are often focused on anything but what it is we’re doing. For example, you’ve got the latest podcast streaming through your speakers, and you’re solving crime on the fly. You get phone calls which also come through your speakers, interrupting your driving processes because people don’t like to wait until 9am for answers to questions they actually needed yesterday.

This is all of course disregarding the scrolling through Facebook at the lights type situation which we all do. Don’t go getting up on your high horse and saying you don’t because at one point or another we have all touched our phones while driving.

All of these distractions, and the way we conduct ourselves and our minds while driving lead us to one, living more anxiously and two, driving more dangerously. Driving more dangerously means more accidents on our roads and a higher road toll and yet more tragedies over the holiday period.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, if we can all just kick it old school while we’re driving, and live a little more slowly then perhaps we will notice a massive difference in the way we commute.