You could be doing something behind the wheel every day that could kill yourself or others, it’s texting. And you’re not alone.
In fact, a new University of Kansas study found that 95% percent of us text and drive. But get this: The same amount of us also say we want to ban texting and driving, because we know it’s dangerous.
So, why do we do it anyway? Researchers say it’s because texting is a compulsive behavior. We feel that we need to immediately text people back who reach out to us, even if we’re cruising down the highway at 60 miles an hour. In fact, one new study found that most people would rather text a significant other back within a half hour, even if it cost them a huge financial reward, instead of waiting 6 hours to text them and get the reward.
Another reason you can’t stop texting behind the wheel? Your brain won’t let you. Experts say our prefrontal cortex, which is fired up when we drive, also helps us make decisions. It’s the part that would normally say, “Hey silly. Stop texting while you’re driving.”
But many studies show that our brain can’t focus on two things at once, and when it’s already busy focusing on helping you drive, it’s less likely to help you stop texting.
The fix? Make it impossible to check your phone while you’re in the car. Meaning, as soon as you hop in, turn your phone off, and leave it in the glove compartment or backseat, so there’s no way you can check it until you’ve stopped driving.