Whether your kids are of age to drive or not, they’re learning from you.
Their lessons start much earlier than you’d think. And it’s long before they get behind the wheel themselves.
If you have bad driving habits, your kids are likely to pick up on them. Why? Because they learn best by example.
You can tell your child that something is wrong, but if they see you doing that “wrong” thing, they’re likely to think it can’t be that bad.
And since driving is such a major responsibility, it’s crucial to send the right message to your kids.
So here are 6 common bad habits your kids may be picking up from you.
Texting while driving
Texting while driving is a major cause of accidents today, so it’s a wonder anyone still does it. But if you’re among the guilty, it’s time to stop. You may think you have it under control but remember that you’re an experienced driver. When your child is a teen, they’ll probably pick up their phone to text too, and it may result in an accident.
Aggressive driving is often a trait that’s passed down from generation to generation. So is anger. So, if you’re having trouble controlling your anger while driving, your kids are likely to struggle with the same. If you haven’t shown them the right way to handle the situation, you can’t really expect better of them. But just like texting and driving, road rage can be dangerous. If you want better for your kids, it’s time to curb this bad driving behavior.
If you don’t use your turn signals or come to a full stop at stop signs, your kids are likely to pick up on those habits too – especially if you’re the one who is teaching them. But you might have some time on this one. Kids probably aren’t paying attention to turn signals until they’re a bit older. But it’s still a good idea to start good habits now.
Slacking on Maintenance
If your kids get used to hearing the “check engine” or “tire pressure” signal, they’re going to become immune to it. They get the message that quality car maintenance doesn’t matter as much as it really should. If you don’t maintain your car regularly, it’s more prone to breakdowns and other issues.
Do you have a lead foot? When you drive above the speed limit, your kids are paying attention. They may even encourage you to drive faster because it can be exciting for them. But all this is just reinforcing the notion that speeding is appropriate.
Many people quickly accelerate before they know they need to stop. This causes you to have to press the brake pedal harder, which is terrible for the car. When you’re braking hard, you’re also more likely to get into an accident, so this isn’t a habit you want your kids to have.
The next time you get into the car, think about how you want your kids to drive (when they’re ready). If you don’t have the same habits, it’s time for a change.