Advertising
Advertising

Meet The Car Crash Prone Driver, According To Science

Meet The Car Crash Prone Driver, According To Science

Do you have a friend who seems to be always causing an accident? In fact, to be politically correct, we must use the term crash, as accidents are supposed to happen regardless human action, whereas crashes happen due to human error.

So back to the problem: do you have a friend who is always the victim of an accident? I do and you probably have one also. This is because there are people who seem to attract misfortune with each step they take. Until now, science was looking at them with a raised eyebrow, but recent studies proved there is a personality type prone to accidents.

The connection between personality and crashes

Your personality can provide a deep insight into your behavior, which alters the way you drive, because your personality is what makes you act in a certain way in critical situations, when you have to make vital decisions.

Advertising

When we think of a connection between personality and crashes we think of impulsive people, who speed up and text while driving. However, the studies contradict this image. While it’s true that non-conforming people are prone to breaking the driving rules, risk takers and adventure seekers are not the most prone to accidents.

This is because these people drive often and gain excitement from driving. This makes them drive more miles than others, which also makes them more experienced and skilled than people who are afraid of accidents. And this is not the only unexpected reveal of the studies, they reveal an over-cautiously, over-optimistic person is more prone to accidents than an adventurous impulsive one. There are more surprising characteristics of the accident prone person.

1. Poor time planning abilities

If you struggle to manage your time, you might be prone to accidents. This is one of the feature found to be linked with crash prone personalities by the new studies. The explanation is a simple one: people who have trouble managing their time are most likely to be sleep deprived and in a hurry. We all know that lack of sleep is a huge enemy of driving and when you pair it with the pressure to arrive on time somewhere, the risk of being involved in a car crash increases.

Advertising

By comparison, people who have good time management skills are able to plan their time and get enough sleep. Also, they are less likely to be on the rush, as they know how to avoid being late on appointments. Very optimistic people were found to often assign too little time for their trips, which means they will often be in a rush. This pressure makes them prone to crashes, according to science.

2. Blaming others

A tendency to blame others is also dangerous behind the wheel. Studies found that people who fail to take responsibility in their own behavior and prefer to blame others are more likely to be involved in a car crash. Psychologists call this characteristic external, as these individuals put the blame on external factors. By comparison, internals, who always look for the fault for an accident in their own person, are more likely to avoid crashes. They are also more likely to wear seatbelts and learn from their own mistakes.

3. Living for the present

Probably the most unexpected revealing of these studies is the connection between how you see time and how likely you are to be involved in an accident. According to science there are three basic personality types depending on the individual’s relationship with time: past, present and future oriented.

Advertising

Past oriented people dwelve in their memories and are nostalgic. They also look into their past to learn how to act in the future.

Present oriented people live for the moment and think little of the consequences of their actions. They are the most prone to indulge in dangerous behavior, such as drinking or texting while driving.

Future oriented people plan ahead their future and are very aware of the consequences of their present actions.

Advertising

Psychologists found that present oriented people are most prone to crashes, while future-oriented ones are least likely to be involved in a crash. This also infirms the well known myth that women are more prone to car accidents than men: in reality, men are more present oriented, while women are future-oriented.

If you want to know how your personality impacts your driving you can take the driving personality test.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

More by this author

Simona Elena

Freelance Writer, Addicted to LIFE

How to Give a Relationship Another Chance When It’s on the Rocks Natural Hair Care: These Essential Oils Are Everything You Need Meet The Car Crash Prone Driver, According To Science 10 Healthy Versions of Comfort Food Recipes

Trending in Brain

1 How to Build Strategic Thinking Skills for Effective Leadership 2 How to Avoid Binary Thinking and Think More Clearly 3 7 Ways to Improve Focus And Memory (Backed By Science) 4 Brain Training: 12 Fast, Fun Mental Workouts 5 What Is Unconscious Bias (And How to Reduce It for Good)

Read Next

Advertising
Advertising
Advertising

Published on July 29, 2020

How to Build Strategic Thinking Skills for Effective Leadership

How to Build Strategic Thinking Skills for Effective Leadership

Have you been thinking of how you can be a more strategic leader during these uncertain times? Has the pandemic thrown a wrench at all your carefully laid out plans and initiatives?

You’re not alone. The truth is, we all want some stability in our careers and teams during this disruptive pandemic.

However, this now requires a bit more effort than before and making the leap from merely surviving to thriving means buckling down to some serious strategic thinking and maintaining a determined mindset.

Is There a Way to Thrive Despite These Disruptions?

Essentially – yes, although you need to be willing to put in the work. Every leader wants to develop strategic thinking skills so that they can enhance overall team performance and boost their company’s success, but what exactly does it mean to be strategic in the context of the times we live in?

If you happen to be in a leadership position in your organization right now, you are most probably navigating precarious waters given the disruptions caused by the pandemic. There’s a lot more pressure than before because your actions and decisions will have a much greater impact these days not just on you, but also to the people who are part of your team.

Companies often bring me in to coach executives on strategic thinking and planning. And while pre-pandemic I would usually start by highlighting the advantages of strategic thinking, nowadays, I always begin these Zoom coaching sessions by driving home the point that this pandemic has now made strategic thinking not just an option but an absolute must.

Advertising

Assessing and making plans through the lens of a good strategy might require significant work at first. Nevertheless, you can take comfort in the fact that the rewards will far outweigh the effort, as you’ll soon see after following the 8 strategic steps I have outlined below.

8 Steps to Strategic Thinking

As events unfold during these strange times, you’re bound to feel wrong-footed every now and then. Being a leader during this pandemic means preparing for more change not just for you, but for your whole team as well.

As states and cities go through a cycle of lockdowns and reopening, employees will experience the full gamut of human emotions in dizzying speed, and you will often be called on to provide insight and stability to your team and workplace.

Strategic thinking is all about anticipation and preparation. Rather than expending your energy merely helping your company put out fires and survive, you can put the time to better use by charting out a solid plan that can protect and help you and your company thrive.

Take the following steps to build solid initiatives and roll out successful projects:

Step 1: Step Back, Then Set the Scope

One of the things that leaders get wrong during their first attempt at strategic thinking is expecting that it is just another item on a checklist. The truth is, you need to take a good, long look at the bigger picture before anything else. This means decisively prioritizing and stepping away from tasks that can be delegated to others. Free up your schedule so you can focus on this crucial task at hand.

Advertising

Then, proceed with setting the scope and the strategic goals of the project or initiative you plan to build or execute. Ask yourself the bigger question of why you need to embark on a particular project and when would be the right time to do so.

You need to set a timeline as well, anywhere from 6 months to 5 years. Keep in mind that your projections will deteriorate the further out you go as you make longer-term plans.

For this reason, add extra resources, flexibility, and resilience if you have a longer timeline. You should also be making the goals less specific if you’re charting it out for the longer term.

Step 2: Make a List of Experts

Make and keep a list of credible people who can contribute solid insight and feedback to your initiative. This could range from key stakeholders to industry experts, mentors, and even colleagues who previously planned and rolled out similar projects.

Reach out to the people on this list regularly while you work through the steps to bring diverse insight into your planning process. This way, you will be able to approach any problem from every angle.

Bringing key stakeholders into this initial process will also display your willingness to listen and empathize with their issues. In return, this will build trust and potentially pave the way for smoother buy-in down the line.

Advertising

Step 3: Anticipate the Future

After identifying your goals and gathering feedback, it’s time to consider what the future would look like if everything goes as you intuitively anticipate. Then, lay out the kind and amount of resources (money, time, social capital) that might be needed to keep this anticipated future running.

Step 4: Brainstorm on Potential Internal and External Problems

Next, think of how the future would look if you encountered unexpected problems internal and external to the business activity that seriously jeopardize your expected vision of the future. Write out what kind of potential problems you might encounter, including low-probability ones.

Assess the likelihood that you will run into each problem. To gauge, multiply the likelihood by the number of resources needed to address the problem. Try to convert the resources into money if possible so that you can have a single unit of measurement.

Then, think of what steps you can take to address these internal and external problems before they even happen. Write out how much you expect these steps might cost. Lastly, add up all the extra resources that may be needed because of the different possible problems and all the steps you committed to taking to address them in advance.

Step 5: Identify Potential Opportunities, Internal and External

Imagine how your expected plan would look if unexpected opportunities came up. Most of these will be external but consider internal ones as well. Then, gauge the likelihood of each scenario and the number of resources you would need to take advantage of each opportunity. Convert the resources into money if possible.

Then, think of what steps you can take in advance to take advantage of unexpected opportunities and write out how much you expect these steps might cost. Finally, add up all the extra resources that may be needed because of the different unexpected opportunities and all the steps you committed to taking to address them in advance.

Advertising

Step 6: Check for Cognitive Biases

Check for potential cognitive biases that are relevant to you personally or to the organization as a whole, and adjust the resources and plans to address such errors.[1] Make sure to at least check for loss aversion, status quo bias, confirmation bias, attentional bias, overconfidence, optimism bias, pessimism bias, and halo and horns effects.

Step 7: Account for Unknown Unknowns (Black Swans)

To have a more effective strategy, account for black swans as well. These are unknown unknowns -unpredictable events that have potentially severe consequences.

To account for these black swans, add 40 percent to the resources you anticipate. Also, consider ways to make your plans more flexible and secure than you intuitively feel is needed.

Step 8: Communicate and Take the Next Steps

Communicate the plan to your stakeholders, and give them a heads up about the additional resources needed. Then, take the next steps to address the unanticipated problems and take advantage of the opportunities you identified by improving your plans, as well as allocating and reserving resources.

Finally, take note that there will be cases when you’ll need to go back and forth these steps to make improvements, (a fix here, an improvement there) so be comfortable with revisiting your strategy and reaching out to your list of experts.

Conclusion

A great way to deal with feelings of uncertainty during this pandemic is to anticipate obstacles with a good plan – and a sure road to that is practicing strategic thinking.

In the coming months and years, you’ll need to continue navigating uncharted territory so that you can lead your team to safe waters. Regularly doing these 8 steps to strategic thinking will ensure that you can prepare for and adapt  to the coming changes with increasing clarity, perspective, and efficiency.[2]

More on Thinking Smarter

Featured photo credit: JESHOOTS.COM via unsplash.com

Reference

Read Next