Hello and welcome to HealingWell and the Anxiety and Panic Forum. I am sorry that driving is a problem for you right now but here are some tips for you to try.
1. Take small steps and you will eventually get to your destination -- A lot of people who have a fear of driving simply give up using their car altogether. This is the way to perpetuate your condition, not to heal yourself. If you feel that you're unable to drive, simply use the car for short periods. Either drive around the block, or to the grocery store, or take frequent pit stops to make sure your fear doesn't build up. By doing so, you're conditioning your mind to gradually overcome your fears.2. Listen to soothing music while you're driving -- Music has great effect on our mood. Find some music that you can relax to and play it while you're driving. It will lower your overall stress levels and your will enjoy your ride more.
4. Take deep breaths -- If you're ever driving and start to experience one of the many symptoms of your phobia (sweating, stomach aches, nausea), take a few deep breaths. Inhale and exhale slowly. Deep breaths steady the heart beat and help you to relax
Think positive thoughts, leaving no room for failure that you “just can’t do this.”
I know you can do this. Set small goals for yourself and then just do it. We are here to support you.
Hi kelli and welcome to HW. You have been given absolutely awesome advice by both Kitt and Cary-Ann. I noticed that you mentioned professional therapy and counselling were not an option at this time so I thought Id give you some links to websites where you can explore online counselling and therapy for free- I understand where you are coming from as I am a long term agoraphobic- but I eventually beat it (to a point) and Im sure in time, you can too. I needed alot of time with my Pdoc and I take medication. I truly hope you stick with us and are able to start finding some answers and relief-
My anxiety was so bad at one time I could not watch anything on TV. Everything seemed to "jar" my soul. I can relate, also to the issue of medication. It took 2 different Drs. and countless trials with different meds before I found the one that worked and I had no side effects from. That was the most wonderful feeling. I said many times before that "No More"! I can't go through this long trial and error period again. It got so bad one day, I consented to try yet another med and it was the one that worked for me. I can watch TV now, I still startle very easily but not like I use to. I also have what has been referred to as "Wally World Syndrome". I have the worst panic attacks in Walmart. So when I have to go, I go early on Saturday when I am not rushed and the store is not packed. This seems to help. I hope you can find some avenue of help soon. I really do know how it feels. Don't give up.........and the advice from others is very good......don't beat yourself up.
Thanks for sharing with us. I am glad you finely found a medication that works for you. I know how hard it is to keep trying meds that make you feel awful and then on to the next one.
Proud of you for hanging in there.
You have been in my corner from day one and I really appreciate you. Have a great week-end!