Everyone knows that texting and driving is dangerous, yet many people choose to do it anyway. There are a variety of reasons for this, according to psychologists’ research.
We Think We are Better (Drivers)
People tend to think of themselves as above average. In this situation, that translates to being a good driver and a good multi-tasker. While people know that texting behind the wheel is dangerous, they may think that they’re able to do it better than others. However, research has proven that our attention diminishes with each additional task we take on. That means that you can’t completely focus on driving while answering a text or checking Facebook. After all, you’re not invincible and those horrible tragedies that you see on the news can in fact happen to you if you’re not careful.
With 24/7 access to people and the internet right in our pockets, we as a society have grown used to being constantly plugged in. That notification ping becomes incredibly tempting to check and many people even believe—whether they know it or not—that a slow response time may lead to an unsavory result, such as being replaced by someone who is faster to respond.
We Need Entertainment
People are constantly seeking out forms of entertainment that chase away boredom. It’s becoming increasingly difficult for many to simply be with themselves. So sitting quietly at a red light may be difficult for these folks. They may feel like their thoughts or feelings must be delivered in order to reconnect with the world.
Try These Solutions to Keep Roads Safer
There are quite a few reasons why we text while driving, but how do we retrain ourselves to stop the dangerous habit? Try these three methods and encourage your friends and family to do the same.
Occupy your time: Rather than just waiting for that phone to beep, try listening to an audiobook or a talk radio show. You may find yourself so absorbed that you no longer have the desire to pick up your phone right that second.
Lock it up: If you need a bit more encouragement, turn your phone on silent and slip it into the glove box or store it in the trunk while driving. That makes it much harder to play with while on the road.
Use apps: There’s an app for everything, and safe driving is no exception. Download one that turns your phone on drive mode if it senses movement faster than 25 mph. Drive mode will stop you from sending texts and some apps even send auto-responses saying that you will respond once safely out of the car.