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Home » What Motorcycling Taught Me About Dealing with Anxiety: Benjamin White (Transcript)

What Motorcycling Taught Me About Dealing with Anxiety: Benjamin White (Transcript)

Here is the full transcript of Benjamin White’s talk titled “What Motorcycling Taught Me About Dealing with Anxiety” at TEDxBlinnCollege conference.

In his talk, “What Motorcycling Taught Me About Dealing with Anxiety,” Benjamin White explores the unexpected therapeutic effects of motorcycling on his anxiety. He illustrates how the focus and presence required to ride safely mirror effective strategies for managing anxious thoughts.

White shares personal anecdotes that demonstrate the importance of preparation, protective gear, and mindfulness, drawing a compelling analogy between motorcycling’s physical demands and mental health management. His experience reveals a profound connection between the discipline of motorcycling and improved anxiety control, highlighting an innovative approach to mental wellness. Through his talk, White inspires others to find unique pathways to confront and mitigate their anxiety.

Listen to the audio version here:

TRANSCRIPT:

I have anxiety. I also ride a motorcycle. Not the most likely of combinations, I know. In the summer of 2017, when I embarked on my journey to learn how to ride a motorcycle, I thought doing so would make me nervous, scared, and anxious. And it did. What I did not expect to learn was that in learning to ride a motorcycle and practicing those skills, I would get a better handle on how to better deal with my anxiety.

The Brain and the Motorcycle

Now, there are two machines I want to talk about, one of which is a motorcycle, the other is our brain. The brain, to me, is one of the most fascinating things in the world. It’s the most complex thing in the entire known universe. It’s essentially a what-if machine. It allows us to remember the past and think about the future. This can lead to insight, joy, wonder, and innovation. But sometimes it gets out of control.

There’s a couple of phrases in the motorcycling community, and one of them is this: “All the gear, all the time.” To put it simply, it means wear all your gear all the time. It’s important to stay protected because as a motorcycle rider, we never know what’s going to happen. There’s very little separating us from the pavement, and wearing your gear is going to mean that should something unfortunate occur, you’re at least going to save some skin, if not possibly save your life.

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