Navigating Nerves: Overcoming Common Beginner Mistakes While Learning to Drive

Despite the freedom and independence driving provides, it’s not uncommon for beginners to experience nervousness and make mistakes during their initial learning period.

The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, and Communications reported that novice drivers accounted for 22% of all Australian driver fatalities in 2022.

Mistakes and nerves can contribute significantly to this percentage, highlighting the importance of finding strategies to conquer them.

Mastering the art of driving is much like detailing a car. It requires patience, attention to detail, and an understanding of each part’s purpose. As you wouldn’t rush detailing a car, don’t rush your learning process. Each mistake corrected, each lesson learned takes you one step closer to being a confident and safe driver,” says Elise Johnston, an expert car detailing service provider at Car Detailing.

Learning to drive can be nerve-wracking.

But rest assured that everyone goes through the same journey and makes similar mistakes. It’s how we learn and improve.

Here are five common mistakes beginner drivers often make and practical strategies to overcome them:

1. Overcompensating Steering

One typical beginner mistake involves overcompensating on the steering wheel, leading to erratic vehicle movement and potentially dangerous situations.

To overcome this, practice is critical. You need to grasp the feel of the steering and learn the vehicle’s responses to your actions.

A professional driving lesson can be beneficial as professional instructors can provide crucial feedback to improve your steering control.

2. Incorrect Seating Position

Many novice drivers must know the correct seating position, often sitting too close or far from the steering wheel.

This position can reduce control and increase fatigue on long drives.

To correct this error, ensure a reasonable distance between your chest and the steering wheel, and you can reach the foot pedals comfortably.

It might take several adjustments and considerable time to find the perfect posture.

3. Over Speeding

Beginner drivers often need help maintaining the correct speed, either too fast or too slow.

To overcome this issue, familiarise yourself with speed limits and actively check your speedometer.

Regular speed checks will help you maintain the recommended speed and ensure your safety and that of others on the road.

4. Distractions

Distractions are one of the primary reasons for accidents involving beginner drivers.

Whether it’s smartphones, passengers, or in-car features – distractions cause a lack of focus and dangerous situations.

Overcome this mistake by making a conscious effort to focus only on your driving.

Always remind yourself – your primary responsibility behind the wheel is the safety of yourself and other road users.

5. Poor Observation Skills

Lack of observation is a common issue among newbie drivers.

Having a keen sense of what’s happening can prevent unforeseen incidents.

Cultivate the habit of regularly checking your mirrors and blind spots and develop an awareness of surrounding vehicles, pedestrians, and potential hazards.

Steer Toward Confidence With Adelaide West Driver Training

Learning to drive can undoubtedly be a nerve-wracking journey filled with typical mistakes. But remember, each mistake is an opportunity to learn and grow.

With conscious effort, adequate professional guidance, and a positive mindset, you can successfully navigate your nerves and become a proficient driver.

Here at Adelaide West Driver Training, we understand the challenges and nerves beginners face while learning to drive.

Our professionally qualified instructors can help you navigate these nerves and common beginner mistakes and guide you through a safe and confident journey to becoming a proficient driver.

Contact us for top quality-based professional driving training at

Let us help you overcome your nerves and become a safe, confident, and responsible driver.

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