Attention is a Limited Resource
Your most valuable resource is your attention because it creates your experience. It is a limited resource in that we can focus fully on only one thing at a time. Like a spotlight that shines on a small area, your attention must jump around to cover several things.
One way we cope with limited attention is by developing habits that no longer require much attention. You can function on automatic while you focus on other things. This gives the illusion of doing more than one thing fully but actually very little attention goes to the automatic task.
So it is with driving. The act of driving has become so automatic that we feel we can do all manner of other things. It is possible to talk on the phone, listen to the news or music, listen to a book, consult the GPS, eat a meal, drink coffee, do make-up, brush hair, shave, text message or read a book and drive at the same time. And it is true, we can…but not safely. Studies have shown that a driver on the phone is FOUR times more likely to have an accident. A driver on the phone is as hazardous as an intoxicated one.

Driving Mindfully
The first step to drive mindfully is stop multi-tasking and do only one task – driving. This means no audio, phone, food or drink while driving. Left in silence, the mind will find dozens of other activities occupy it. Thinking, planning, reminiscing, worrying, rehashing and rehearsing all quickly jump into the mind. Keeping attention actively engaged in the act of driving is the best way to stop this. Driving is not something you have to think about, it is more a sensory experience. Your focus can stay with the task by constantly scanning your five senses for information about the road, your vehicle, other traffic, and all manner of potential hazards.

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