Road hypnosis is more common than you might think. It makes drivers “zone out” behind the wheel even though they are still fully aware.
Have you thought about something else during a speech, then realized what was happening? Or, at the end of a page, have you ever forgotten what you just read? If so, you were in a similar state of mind at work.
But when it happens during rush hour, it seems much more natural and dangerous. In this article, we’ll talk about road hypnosis and how to stop it from happening.
What is road hypnosis?
Drivers who spend much time on the road may feel like they are in a trance. This is often called “white line fever.” You start to lose focus and think about things other than driving. You can still safely change lanes, use your turn signal, and do other traffic-related stuff while doing this.
When your body goes into its rote-response mode, it seems your mind’s memories take over. It is comparable to riding a bike in this sense.
Once you have mastered a talent, you won’t have to watch every move you make while riding. When instinct takes over, you don’t have to do anything to get going. In the same way, if you have a white-line fever while driving, it’s almost like you’re on autopilot.
Things that are like driving drunk
One thing is different: contrary to what some scientists used to think, sleepy driving has nothing to do with road hypnosis.
Modern hypnosis studies show that people who have gone through highway hypnosis do not sleep. Instead, they are more focused and aware of what is going on in their minds. This makes driving safer because essential tasks are done automatically instead of on purpose.
On the other hand, tired drivers can’t think as well. They can only move slowly and pay little attention to the cars around them. 37% of drivers say they have fallen asleep at the wheel at least once, even though they know how dangerous it is. Sleepy driving is the real cause of 6% of all accidents, including more than 20% of accidents that end in death and 13% of accidents that cause serious injuries.
How to Avoid Road Hypnosis?
Even though hypnotized drivers can often still drive safely, it’s never a good idea to get lost while driving. Let’s look at ways to stay awake and aware of what’s happening around you.
1. Don’t drive a car when you’re tired or asleep
No, this is not the same as driving while drunk. Even if you never close your eyes, being tired can make you fall asleep while driving. When you’re used to sleeping in the morning, you’re also less likely to pay attention to other things.
Even more, a reason to drive during the day? It’s boring to be in a dark place! This makes it much easier for your brain to go into autopilot, especially if it is already tired from the long hours of driving earlier.
Trying to beat the clock and make up some ground overnight might be tempting if you are in the middle of a long trip. But if you feel your body starting to shut down, it’s best to pull into a well-lit parking lot or rest stop and sleep.
2. Keep An Eye On Things
At some point, everyone has been “stuck,” unable to move their eyes from a particular spot. Keep your eyes open and move around as much as possible so you don’t get stuck on something and lose focus. Also, sit up straight to help you pay more attention.
Check your mirrors often and take a look from side to side. Read the speed limit signs, mile markers, and exit signs around you. You’ll not only be more careful, but you’ll also be more aware of what’s going on around you and will help you to avoid road hypnosis.
3. Keep Passengers’ Attention
Another way to keep your attention on the road and avoid road hypnosis? Talk to the other passengers in your car! This could be a great way to keep your mind busy and stay focused, as long as the conversation isn’t so interesting that it pulls you away.
4. Halt After some time
Again, you should only keep driving on a short trip, even if you feel like you’re falling asleep at the wheel. Try to take a break every two to three hours to stretch your legs, have a coffee, and reset.
This could keep you from getting so worried that you lose track of what’s happening. If possible, try to take turns driving with someone else, so you don’t get too tired.
5. Change your path
Road hypnosis usually happens when you’re driving on a route you know well, like the highway you take to work every day. If you want to avoid it, think about taking a different path.
This will make you pay more attention to what you’re doing and stop you from moving like a robot.
6. Turn down the temperature
Warm temperatures are comforting and relaxing. They’re really too comfy. When it’s warm, it’s inviting and pleasant. In fact, they are too comfortable. Keep the temperature in your car a bit lower and, if you need to, roll down the windows to keep your mind on the road.
7. Do not use the cruise control
Even though cruise control might be helpful, letting your car do all the work makes it much more likely that you will fall asleep. Only use it if you want to keep your mind from wandering.
Also Read: Top 12 Best Driving Schools in Lahore
Be careful and aware on the road
We all try to be as safe as possible when we drive. But our bodies and brains are strong, and sometimes they work against what we want to do.
If you were hypnotized while driving, broke the law, or got into an accident, you could face several consequences. These can include an increase in the cost of car insurance, a traffic ticket, or a court-ordered defensive driving course.