Is Driving A Form of Therapy?


Ally Dumoulin, Herald Writer

     At night with fewer cars on the road, listening to music, and your mind wandering can be the most peaceful feeling to have while driving. Realizing everything that’s going on around you and being aware of your surroundings can help you while outside of driving. Many people tend to pour their emotions into the music they listen to and driving can make you feel less alone. It gives you a moment to recollect yourself and all of your thoughts, especially when you’re stopped at a red light. There are so many rules to driving that some people forget about when on the road. Sometimes just relaxing, taking your time and listening to music can clear your mind when driving, even if you don’t have a destination. On the road you may feel as though you have so much space from people and giving yourself time to focus on you.

     Driving can be tough, mostly during the morning and afternoon as most adults are heading to work, grabbing lunch, taking their children to school, picking up groceries and free driving. Sometimes when there are distractions like cell phones, loud conversations, or other drivers who aren’t paying attention to the road can be scary. There are people who do not follow the law when on the road and could cause car accidents which may lead to severe injuries, trauma or even death. Being on the road can be very dangerous when not paying attention to your surroundings. You never know when a pedestrian may run out in the road or walk through the crosswalk without looking both ways. When not staying a far enough distance from another car, they may need to slam on their brakes which could lead to you rear-ending their car if you’re going too fast.

     When driving, especially at night on the weekends, you need to be very careful and make the right decisions. There are many drivers under the influence, coming from parties or a bar that could be in the city. Staying at a steady range of speed while driving is safer because you can stop quicker, focus on the cars around you, and always listen for emergency services like the police, firefighters, and paramedics. Giving your attention to the road and understanding what’s happening around you is needed when in the car, driving or not. Learning the rules of the road and driving are needed in order to begin, but unfortunately some young drivers still take the car and will go for a ride which is very dangerous.

     The mental health benefits of driving are alleviating mental distress, reducing stress, giving happiness, pure joy and excitement, building confidence, reducing anxiety and so much more. Driving alone, listening to music and truly knowing and being yourself is a great feeling. You feel like a stronger and smarter person after each drive, and figuring out how to handle certain situations, and feeling peace when you’re finished. Driving is not for everybody but those who love driving, realize how therapeutic it will always be.