I wanted to write down a few things that I would say to myself looking back on my driving journey. There are a few things I wish someone had said to me and constantly reminded me throughout.
- Make sure you’re ready
There is absolutely no point in trying to force yourself to do something just because you feel that you should or because all of your friends are doing it. If you don’t feel ready to start learning to drive then don’t. I think it is so important to make sure that you are ready and excited about the future with learning to drive, of course, nerves are normal but if you’re not ready. Then wait. I didn’t start driving until I was 19 when a lot of my friends had passed at 17 but I wasn’t ready before that, nor did I have a need for driving. Once I hit 19, I was earning my own wage and so was able to fund the lessons myself, I was also a lot more excited about the prospect of learning and getting my own car. Being excited is so important as it’ll motivate you throughout your journey.
- Stick with it
You might struggle initially with it; you need to give yourself some credit. Not everybody takes to driving like a duck to water. It’s a brand new skill that you need to learn and it can be very difficult. But you will pick it up. It might be hard and it might take a while but you’ll gradually pick it up and you need to believe in yourself and your capabilities. Keep going and often you’ll find that things you first found difficult will just click and you’ll be wondering what you were ever worried about!
- Failing your test is not the end of the world
I failed my practical test twice, I was so so upset about it and completely blamed myself, convinced myself I was rubbish at driving and I’d never be able to do it. This mindset caused me to stop driving for over a year after I’d failed the second time. Although now I feel a lot more ready to tackle driving again I wish I’d not let it get to me and not given up. It’s not the end of the world, and whilst driving is expensive it’s a life skill and it’s so worth it because of the freedom it brings. I absolutely love driving and although I’m really nervous about taking my test again I’m trying not to let it get to me because as I said, I really enjoy driving so I’m trying to just have fun with it instead of getting stressed.
- Do two-hour lessons as soon as you can
Although obviously more expensive, two-hour lessons are a lot more beneficial in the long run. It enables you to get used to the car and settle into driving rather than rushing it to squeeze it into an hour. For me it enabled me to get to the town I will be taking my test in and back and still have over an hour over there so I could really get used to the roads. Obviously, you are learning to drive for life and not just the test so you need to be able to read the roads wherever you go but it’s a lot nicer getting to know the area so it’s not all new to you when you do take your test. I hope these have helped some of you on your journey towards learning to drive. Evie.