If you are like most of the population, you spend A LOT of time getting to and from work. In fact, the average commute to work in the US is around 25 minutes. That’s almost an hour a day just sitting in the car.
Unfortunately (and fortunately) for me, my commute is usually around 1-2 hours roundtrip a day with the occasional traffic jam pushing that to around 3 hours. However, I love my day job and I love my home so I’ve found ways to take full advantage of this time in the car without putting others in danger.(I’m talking about texting, emailing, putting on makeup, carving a pumpkin and whatever else those lunatics do on the road)
- Listen to Podcasts (or Audio Books) instead of Music | OBVIOUSLY The Lady Gang every single week is a must listen, but lately I’m really into cooking and wellness so I’ve become a regular listener of The Bon Appetit Foodcast, Food 52 Podcast and That’s So Retrograde (these girls are hilarious and so fun to listen to, plus their guests are experts and super informative about health and wellness). If you take the subway or walk to work, I’d suggest investing in some quality noise-cancelling headphones.
- Hydrate and get your vitamins | I don’t know about you but once I get to work and start focusing on a million different things, my water/smoothie/coffee/tea tends to just sit on my desk until lunch when I’m so thirsty I have to chug 3 bottles of water. Use your commute to drink a smoothie full of superfruits or have a green tea latte but make sure you’re getting enough water in your system to keep you feeling energized. Despite what Dunkin tells you, America should actually run on water.
- Talk to someone you don’t see often | If you drive to work by yourself, spend the time talking to someone you don’t get too as often as you like, such as a grandparent or a friend from college. Be mindful of other people’s schedules (don’t wake up Grandma if she usually sleeps til noon), especially if you commute by train or bus, since not everyone in your immediate area needs to know about how drunk your sister got at Sunday night dinner.
- Reflect and count your blessings | Make yourself comfortable (buy a soft car seat cover, wear comfortable shoes, etc) and spend the time you have to yourself to think about everything you’re working for and accomplishing instead of spending the time worrying about what’s happening next.
- Decompress | Stop bringing your work home with you and bringing your home life to work. This is easier said than done, but once you figure out how to do it, your days will run much smoother. Your partner doesn’t need to hear every single thing that happened at work (a few things to vent every now and then is one thing but constant bitching is another), just like your co-worker doesn’t need to know about every little argument you have with your partner or children. Keeping them separate allows you step away and think about things. Use your time commuting to think about what’s happening in your life and prepare to let it go before you get home or get to work.