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Any Tips For Anxiety In A Specific Situation?

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posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:23 PM
Let me start out by saying if I felt at anytime this would endanger anyone on the road, I would stop driving.

I've always had mild anxiety issues, but for some reason I've been having a very hard time driving on the freeway lately. This is rather odd for me as I've always loved driving on the freeway, and used to do it just for fun. I have an extremely safe/reliable car that I bought new last year. It has amazing brakes, awd and is pretty freaking sporty for a sedan (0-60 in 4.7 and handles great). I've owned and driven quite a few cars, from little imports to muscle cars and lifted trucks. This is my favorite car to drive by far, so I think we can rule that out. I have awesome insurance,

For some reason when I get on the freeway my whole body tightens up, and I start to get panicky. I haven't had anything that would spark this to my knowledge, and am relatively stress free. I still enjoy cruising on smaller highways and have no problem with speed or being in someone else's car on the freeway. I've always been a good driver (except for tickets and such) and have had my license since I was 16 (so 14 years; ugh that hurt to say).

When it happens I start sweating, get clammy and feel like I need to immediately pull over. It worsens when there is no shoulder to pull on to. It feels like I just have to get out of the situation, almost like being trapped in an elevator. I don't feel like I'm a threat to other drivers, just very uncomfortable and if anything hyper aware of my surroundings. I would liken it to that feeling you get when you have a near miss on the road.

This happened to me once before and lasted awhile. Eventually went away and I was fine for years. It's actually less of a problem now than last time, but I still obviously really dislike it. My thinking is that I'm freaked out I'm going to freak out, which in turn freaks me out. Stupid vicious circles.

So here are the things I've tried:

-Breathing exercises
-Taking a sip of water
-Cutting out caffeine
-Reading license plates backwards as a distraction
-Listening to music/talk shows/audio books (audio books/talk shows actually work fairly well)

All I can think to add is that much of this goes away when I drive at night (cuts anxiety in half). I don't know if that's because there are fewer cars on the road or what. I also noticed I got a bit better when I tinted my windows (I want to say 20% better).

Appreciate any advice. I feel like a candy ass, but figured someone else here has probably experienced something similar and it's worth looking like a dork if it helps.

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:28 PM
a reply to: Domo1

What happened that gave you PTSD which usually comes from almost being killed or badly scared?

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:38 PM
a reply to: Domo1

This helps most people including me but for me with RLS.

I advised it to someone else with PTSD and he answered me he needed to buy it again, it helped him.

It`s actual a pretty cheap in use and not harmful like ordinary drugs.

So I would advise you to try this and see if it works for you :


posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:40 PM

I am no expert, but have you been in an accident involving something where you were in control ?

Do you trust yourself? Do you have low self esteem?

These are very personal questions, i don't expect an answer, but explore these questions. I would start there. Good luck.

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:42 PM
Last year I had to call the cops because a driver rear ended a school bus a few feet from my door. Eight cop cars raced to the scene. The dude was texting non-stop right through the towing operation (the front end of his car was accordeon'd.) We all hear of distracted texting drivers and for me that's what keeps me off 2-lane highways, as their numbers keep increasing. Could your anxiety be related to something like that?
edit on 22-9-2014 by aboutface because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:43 PM
Is there a particular aspect of free-way driving that brings up the anxiety? I don't drive on motorways that much (I guess the UK alternative) so the process of joining them always gives me a little bit of anxiety, especially when in busy traffic. Perhaps try driving on them at night a few times when you know it won't be as busy, the little bit of experience might alleve some anxiety.

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:48 PM
The only time I had this sort of issue I had just been given a "mild anxiolytic" to help me deal with "inappropriate situational awareness" in malls and open center office buildings.

It backfired. I got really tense and was "on" all the time until I figured it out. About drove my family bat#.

Haven't changed meds/supplements/food lately, have you?

posted on Sep, 22 2014 @ 11:50 PM
Gosh, I fee for ya, as someone who was once brutalized with anxiety, and still struggle from time to time, you have my love, prayers, and moral support.

I defeated mine through healthy eating and regular exercise (I'm talking strength and cardio, become a beast!)

The random chemicals in most of our foods cannot/does not help.

And if you work your heart and body systems hard in accordance to your personal capability, it kind of gives you a buffer of time before anxiety reemerges in my expierience.

And may I reiterate, diet is key!

Balances your mind just as well as your body.

edit on 23-9-2014 by GoShredAK because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:06 AM
a reply to: bitsforbytes

When I was 17 I caused an accident. It wasn't bad, no one was hurt. I've never been in a "bad" accident. I've been in a few others that were relatively minor. Not for a long time though. I thought about that, but I don't think it's related. The only other thing I can think of was getting a DUI, but that was a comedy of errors and while a pain in the ass, wasn't all that stressful. Got popped on the way to buy some allergy meds and didn't realize my BAC was high. Cop drove me home. That's the closest "scary" thing while driving I remember, and it happened over a year ago. My anxiety isn't nearly as bad as it was 5 years ago. I don't think that's the culprit either. I don't think driving is the issue, it's something else.

I do trust myself. I am very competent behind the wheel, with the exception of the DUI. I was always really firm about not driving drunk or even buzzed so it was sort of a surprise to me and everyone else. I felt fine, but didn't actually pay attention to the time between last beer and leaving. I drank a bit, took a quick nap and thought the nap was longer.

I think I have healthy self esteem. I'm not down on myself for anything, but accept that I'm not infallible and have made mistakes.

I don't mind answering those questions. They were very good questions.

Thanks for replying. Great questions, but again, I don't feel like feelings of inadequacy or traumatic experiences while driving are the reason this is happening.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:11 AM
i recommend taking a rhodiola extract supplement

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:12 AM
a reply to: Domo1

1st off - quit the "candy ass" mentality. Everyone has anxieties. Many people, not all in this case, have anxiety disorders. By "disorder", I mean irrational, getting in the way of normal things, a burden. Myself, for instance.

A bit of info before I go on...Public speaking, or being in something like a "safety meeting" at work, is something that scares the every living poop out of me. Lots of people are scared of it. Myself, well, I do weird things in those situations. I start thinking that I've got to be calm first and foremost, but then I focus on my elevated heart rate. Can they see my heart beating 100+ bpms through my shirt, I ask myself? What If I pose and try to LOOK relaxed? Well, now I'm fixated on the location of my feet. Am I moving them too much? Too little? Are they in the right position? I try to lighten up and act naturally - maybe a head scratch would do to make it seem like I'm not totally posturing. I then scratch my head 20 times in the course of the meeting. I go onto some other action that would make it look like I'm bored and not totally immersed in this meeting and the fact that I'm there, and so is everyone, and everyone has peripheral vision, and since I can see them in mine, they can see me and before I know I'm back home on the computer on a post like this, talking about how I feel in these situation and now I feel like I am in one currently.

In cases like that, I get so nervous just trying to be ignored that I can't control how wide my eyes are open, if someone looks at me unexpectedly, my neck muscles contract and my head shakes like a shiver.

I've never conquered all of my anxieties. I've conquered some crippling ones, and I've conquered some miniscule ones.

What helps is to first realize that other people, many people in the 7 billion+ population, feel what you feel. Maybe not about the same things, but they feel it.

2ndly, I sometimes try to break the ice. Sometimes I'll crack a joke and people will laugh and that breaks the ice. The anxiety is still there, but now people know I'm not on the verge of running out of the room like a crackhead like I think they think I am about to do.

3rdly, I try to expose myself to these horrible situations, to desensitize myself. Perhaps a minor victory, but in these situations, my hands and feet no longer go numb. Much of these symptoms are over awareness. Lets say you hurt your elbow, and it is in pain. Your elbow is trying to get your attention, making you think about it so you can help make it feel better. When you freak out and think about your elbow, you become overly aware of your elbow and your elbow might just start hurting on its own. It is a vicious cycle. This applies to numb hands, chest pains, headaches.

4thly, realize it is mostly all in your head.

5thly, realize that there is no deus ex machina in these situations. Time is what heals everything.

All of this may not apply to your own situation, and so I am sorry, but I have other anxieties and these help with those. I'll be watching this thread. I know I have more to say but I can't put these thoughts into words right now. Long day at work yadda yadda.

edit on AMpAmerica/ChicagoTue, 23 Sep 2014 00:19:51 -050030000000Tue, 23 Sep 2014 00:19:51 -0500America/Chicago by Aperture because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:17 AM
a reply to: aboutface

So I'm not worried about getting in an accident. Sorry you had to see that.

I'm the opposite. One of the most (if not the most) highways in WA state is a fun drive for me.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:19 AM
To me driving is stressful so this is nothing new really. They do say to 'face the fear', particularly if it's not an intense anxiety (that may lead to panic attacks), so try driving a lot on the freeway and see if the anxiety gets better or worse (would be a good way to identify if there are any other triggers for it too). It might help to try to identify what it is particularly about free-way driving (the speed, the feel etc) and use traditional phobia techniques to get through it like deep breathing etc.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:31 AM
Something just dawned on me, fwiw. My daughter was fretting about driving and was really making me anxious in the car when she drove. Finally she consulted a driving teacher who discovered what I wasn't even aware of. Her gaze was fixed too close to the front of the car rather than further down the road, and as a result she was too aware of the shoulders and road edge than normal.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:49 AM
a reply to: Domo1

Well my next question is one you probably cannot answer here because of websites rules.

Have you ever experienced a drug bad trip?

I have seen people have anxiety issues following these events even years later.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 12:57 AM
I'm sure you will get control of it........ I believe astigmatism may be connected, as it effects the way you see light, might get your eyes checked.

edit on 23-9-2014 by imitator because: (no reason given)

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 01:08 AM
a reply to: aboutface

That makes sense, if someone is constantly triggering their natural alert responses whether subconsciously or not, anxiety is bound to build up.

It just dawned on me because driving can start my anxiety ball rolling for that very reason. Being far too aware of all the fast moving objects around me, plus loose objects moving around inside the cab.

What a sick avatar by the way.

I wonder how Many people don't see that face right away.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 03:57 AM
I don't like driving the OTHER people bug me.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 04:03 AM
This may be way off base, to aid in mind body association, try the 'stop' exercise. Now and again, freeze in whatever position you are in and take stock. What muscles are you using for that particular activity? What muscles do you need to use? Try relaxing those muscles not directly involved with doing the activity. I used to practice this while driving. It is amazing the muscles that tense up, uselessly.

What you describe sounds really stressful, I am sorry you are experiencing this in your life right now. I hope some of the suggestions made will help you on your quest for a solution.

posted on Sep, 23 2014 @ 04:29 AM
a reply to: Domo1

Unfortunately it sounds as if you are a premature "Eld".
Subsequently you should go quietly to your nearest DMV and hand in your license.

Simple as that !

Oh, can I have your car? Sounds epic what are you rolling in ?


In all seriousness - get yourself to a trusted med - one who is on your side. Central nervous system is a weird one !

( Where can I pick up the weapon ?)

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