Being on autopilot

There was a different type of train to usual on my commute home tonight and I was momentarily baffled about why the doors to the vestibule weren’t opening when I went to get off, only for me to realise I was pressing my hand against the bulkhead where the button is on the normal type of train, rather than pressing the actual button which was on the opposite side of the door.

How much time do you reckon you spend on autopilot? For me I reckon pretty much every working day morning until I leave the house as the routine is almost always the same.

Terrifying when you’re driving and you clock that you haven’t really being paying attention for 20 minutes or so :neutral_face:


Yeah, I used to find this when I drove to work. Would get home and realise I couldn’t remember anything about the journey (unless something unusual happened). It’s both terrifying but also kind of great how we can do quite complicated things without really thinking about them.

1 Like

It’s kind of mad how much of driving is just instinct, and also how effective instinct actually is. Can’t believe how much SHEER MINDPOWER I had to put in while learning, whereas it’s basically piss easy once you’ve done it on your own a few times

How quickly you pick up bad habits too, pretty much stopped feeding the steering wheel through my hands the moment yer boi told me I’d passed.

i had such a weird example of this earlier in the year

i was working on the 3rd floor, and popped up to the 4th floor to speak to someone. went back down to the 3rd floor, except it didn’t look quite right. on opening the door to the office i saw that it was not in fact my floor. i’d autopiloted down 3 flights of stairs (as if doing my usual journey out of the office or going down to lunch from my own floor) instead of just going down 1 floor. had absolutely no recollection of doing it.

Annual post about me being on TinyChat at 3am and then going to get a shower with no intention of doing so and then coming round wondering why I was in the shower and no memory of going to the bathroom and getting undressed. My clothes including jacket were in a tight formation on top of one another on the floor in a way I’ve never done before. This wasn’t really autopilot though I think I was just momentarily possessed. Still freaks my nut out to this day.

always getting on wrong trains because I forget im waiting for a specific train and just get on the one that turns up

When we moved a few years ago, a couple of times I came off the Motorway a junction early and started heading off in completely the wrong direction (towards the old house).

Once wandered around the car park at work for a good 10 minutes getting increasingly worried that my car had been nicked after I’d parked it in a different place to where I normally would.

1 Like

When I moved house I found that I really had to concentrate to stop myself from changing to the Northern Line at Kings Cross. Took a while to get used to not doing it.

found myself looking for a parking space in the centre of edinburgh once before i came to and realised i had set off trying to get to glasgow. just totally zoned out and drove to my old work. ha.


I often find myself typing on autopilot when I’m doing a relatively straightforward piece, until something that requires a bit of contextual thinking comes up and I’m like, ‘How the hell did this conversation get to this point?’ and I realise the last few paragraphs are unrecognisable to me.

Considering I’ve been made redundant, I’m pretty much on autopilot at work right now, if that counts.

Plenty of times where I’m cycling to work in the mornings, same old roads and no traffic, or home at night in the dark (I’ve got lights obv, but you know what I mean), and often I’ll catch myself and realise that for the last few seconds I didn’t really know exactly where I was, just going through the motions (not Thursday).

ALSO, in Brighton on Wednesday, I was waiting at a pedestrian crossing for so long that actually forgot where it was I was going. :rofl:

Years ago when I was younger and more stupid, I would cycle back from Soho to Hackney after six or seven pints, at 11.30pm. I would have no memory of my journey at all.

1 Like

Just remembered my worst autopilot moment, stopped for petrol at a nice petrol station, it had a budgens so I thought I would do a weekly shop. Paid for my shopping and got in my car, petrol station employee follows me out and says I need to pay for my petrol, I was so in super market mode I forgot and said ‘I didn’t get any petrol’ he said I did, I said I didn’t and he shrugged and walked off. I drove off and about a minute later I realised ‘oh yeah the whole reason I stopped was for petrol’. So I went back and apologised and paid, the guy there justifiably thought what I was saying was incredulous saying ‘then why did you say you didn’t?’ (In a millhouse ‘then why did I have the bowl bart?’ tone), didn’t know what to say to him, didn’t know myself. Think I had just been distracted and overwhelmed by their selection of discounted Easter eggs

1 Like

Alright, Noel Edmonds.

Have locked myself out of my work computer before by repeatedly putting in the password to my home one.

My mum gave me her pin to get some money out for her, got it wrong a few times and that was enough to override my muscle memory, forgot my own pin, took about a week to remember

Surely everyone has those kinds of distracted moments from time to time?

1 Like