If we do not own our driving stories, they will own us.
The first and possibly most important aspect of our driving stories is to be truthful to ourselves; to become aware of and pay attention to what we really do, feel and think while driving. For if we do this and we own our driving stories, we get to write the endings.
The short term discomfort of owning our driving stories is minimal compared to the long term pain of living a story we do not own.
How we see the road and traffic
All of us see the world through a lens and to us that is how the world is. Other people’s world view particularly if we are in conflict, are wrong (to us). To see our own and others stories for what they really are, we need to seek the ability to see our own point of view (our current story), to suspend our assumptions about the others story and to move to a viewing point where we are willing and able to see the world from the others perspective. A tough ask, particularly when we are doing 120 kph!
Bear in mind that the other persons story is as real, honest and sincere to them as yours is to you.
The lens in the model has a concave and a convex side. Depending on which side of the lens we are on, that is our point of view. Generally, when we are in conflict or disagreement we see the context from two different perspectives. Our Point of View, our story.
As long as my Point of View or story is based on assumptions, judgement, perception and beliefs it is not possible for us to get to the Viewing Point and therefor seek to understand the others point of view and / or story.
I was on the N2 travelling at 100 kph. I moved to the fast lane to overtake a truck which was about 200m ahead of me. There was a large, luxury 4×4 coming up a reasonable distance behind me. I realised that it was traveling significantly faster than I was and 100m behind me the driver started flashing her lights. Seeing that I was now 50m from the truck I chose not to pull left, apply brakes and wait for her to pass. This did not go down well with the other driver.
I chose to pull out into the overtaking lane even though I knew it would force the other driver to brake. Was I unreasonable? Seeing the driver was several hundred meters behind me and would not have passed me or the truck before I would have, I don’t think I was unreasonable.
Here’s the But; when she flashed her lights at me my sub-conscious default beliefs kicked in and I gloated that she would have to brake. I immediately pulled left when I passed the truck and was glared at as the other driver passed me. I politely flashed my lights at her! See https://driverassesslive.com/aggressive-driving-part-1-looking-lot-closer-home/
As I gloated, my conscious driving mind, the one I’ve been working on for the past 18 months, quickly came into play; I did not get angry, I did not swear or gesture and I pulled left as soon as I could but I still flashed my lights at her as she went past. Why? Because my old sub-conscious default patterns of ‘wanting to teach her a lesson’ or ‘it shouldn’t be allowed’ forced me to consider only my point of view.
What was her point of view, what meaning did she give my action of pulling into the fast lane and making her brake? What did she think of me? Both of those questions are irrelevant as I will never find out. What is relevant is; does my driving story serve me? My answer is not yet, not fully.
I am going to pull into the fast lane in the future and some-one is going to flash their lights at me. The meaning I give the pulling into the fast lane in front of a faster moving vehicle and of that driver flashing their lights at me is what is important. I am the one who needs to be aware of the sub-conscious assumptions, perspectives, beliefs and judgements that I hold, pay them attention and choose to change or eliminate them from my life.
When I have done that, I will be able to consciously write my driving stories.
The Driver Assess driver behaviour profiler has helped me and will help you to become aware of your current sub-conscious driving stories and by paying the story attention decide whether it is a story you want to be part of.
Emotions driver people, people drive cars.
Reference and credit:
Book image – Accuratelmage
Bits – jeltovski
Robot – AimeeLow