I stood listening to the students in China speak the English word ‘dog.’ A few students spoke it instantly without hesitation. Most stood there for a moment, rolling their eyes as if to look deep inside of their brains searching for the right word, and eventually, comes out the word ‘dog.’

We then discovered a difference between the instant speakers and the delayed speakers.

-> DOG

> > gŏu -> DOG

The slower group would look at the dog, say it in chinese, gŏu, and then search inside their heads for the associated word, dog.

The fast speakers looked at the dog and spoke the word dog. No searching.

To eliminate the delay, you needed to ERASE the habit of first saying your native word and searching for the translation. Simply look at the dog and speak out the English word. DON’T THINK!

This was a challenge. But simply trusting your brain and simply blurting out the English word, without thinking, worked! Amazingly. Once the student simply let go of the previous habit and trusted themselves first by just guessing or speaking out, it started to work.

Think of it as buying a new couch for your living room. Before you can bring in the new, you must push aside the old. And eventually, get it out of the house!

Often when we learn, we struggle because the space is full. There simply is no space for the new because it’s occupied by the old.

ALSO NOTE that often this change occurs in steps. Small steps.

You wanna make a right turn at a red light but you always forget to STOP before you turn. Truth is, you are not forgetting anything. You are simply following an ingrained habit called roll right on reds.

In fact, it’s most likely a belief that you have, a preprogramming from watching thousands if not hundreds of thousands of hours, of normal everyday drivers turning right on reds and not stopping!

Your brain is currently filled with roll thru red lights on right turns.

But you must replace this content with new LEGAL content to pass a driving test. An interim step that may help is to connect the two habits and acknowledge the two habits.


Repeat this 30 times today and every day for the next week. Write it on your bathroom mirror in red lipstick and on the fridge door in big letters!

Now when you drive and you see the RED, repeat out loud this phrase.

You must replace this old content with new LEGAL content to pass a driving test. An interim step that may help is to connect the two and acknowledge the two habits.


In time it will become STOP RIGHTS ON REDS.

Often we need to unlearn in order to learn.


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Cooper Talks Driving...


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Materials presented here are for education purposes only referencing two ICBC materials,Tuning Up Drivers Manual, Learn To Drive Right Manual, training material from the 3 week Driving Instructors Licensing Program and amterials from the GLP classroom certificate Program.

IHaveEvolved.com and Todd Cooper are not responsible for any consequences that may result from use of this material. Throughout these posts references are made to acts and regulations that govern driving in British Columbia.

In the event of a difference between the material here and any of these acts or regulations, the acts and regulations shall apply. For specifc help related to these acts please refer to a professional lawyer or a police office.