I have struggled with anxiety before I even knew what it was. But I wrote it off every time. I kept thinking, everyone gets this nervous sometimes. It’s totally normal. But my anxiety spiraled and got worse over the years. When it started to affect my life and prevented me from doing basic or every day tasks, I knew it wasn’t normal anymore but I had no idea what to do. I kind of just let my anxiety take over. I felt helpless. The one thing I struggled with was driving and my anxiety was the main reason why. I’m a New Yorker, and a driver’s license is nice but not always necessary depending on where you live and your lifestyle. So I pushed it to the side for years. I didn’t get my permit until I was in my twenties. I finally decided I just needed to go for it, but very early on I realized driving triggered my anxiety and I felt paralyzed by it. I had numerous driving instructors and took the road test twice in my twenties and completely bombed both times. I gave up for years.
Then I found myself years later still without a license but now I was a mom and wife who depended on everyone else for a ride. It sucked, to say the least. It was one of my biggest insecurities whenever I had to admit to someone that I couldn’t drive. I finally decided to give it a go again. I made sure to find an instructor that was patient and understood what I was going through and I took my time. After months of driving, I felt better. However, the day came for my third road test, and again I bombed. I was just about ready to give up for the final time. I felt defeated and I felt like a failure. How could something many people don’t even consider a challenge be so difficult for me?
So what did I do? I complained and vented to anyone who’d listen. I cried. I got angry. And then after venting to a friend of mine, she suggested the 5×55 method. I was so desperate, I decided, why the hell not? The 5×55 method is a form of manifestation. In other words speaking things into existence and believing things will happen. It may sound like a bunch of mumbo-jumbo or hocus pocus but there’s actually a lot of studies that back it up. Saying things out loud or writing them down can significantly improve the odds of achieving a goal or overcoming a setback. So how does the 5×55 method of manifestation work? In nutshell I needed to write my goal down 55 times for 5 days. Your goal or affirmation needs to be specific. So I wrote: I will get my driver’s license. I wrote this 55 times for 5 days in a row. Honestly, I’d even suggest writing it more if you could. I also made sure to do it when things were calm and quiet and I said it to myself as I was writing this sentence over and over. I would also picture myself driving and being more independent and focused on all the positive things that would happen when I got my license.
The day finally came for my road test. I wrote my affirmations the day before, 55 times. I took a quartz crystal with me. I also didn’t mention to anyone that I was taking the road test. The entire drive to the test site, I kept thinking of my affirmation and also tried to talk to my instructor about other topics to keep my anxiety at bay. As I sat in the car and waited my turn, things seemed different this time around. I wasn’t sweating or breathing hard. I thought, wow it’s actually working. Then it was time for my road test. I was nervous but this time it didn’t seem as bad as before…until I tried to park. All of a sudden I forgot how to park. I started shaking mid-park and told the the examiner “I can’t do this, I’m too nervous. I’ll drive you back.” As I drove off and accepted my defeat, the examiner asked me to try parking on another car. Somehow it all came back to me and I was able to complete my road test. I have no idea if it was the crystal in the back seat tucked into my purse or the universe, but that second chance kicked me into gear and I passed.
It may not seem like a big deal to many, but this method helped me believe in myself. It wasn’t perfect, my anxiety still creeped back in. But I believe the method of manifesting or speaking things into existence works. Half the battle is believing in yourself.