Do you have a long daily commute to work every day? ‘Extreme commuting’ is becoming more popular, with the number of people travelling more than three hours for work increasing by nearly 50% since 2010. A long commute doesn’t just leave you feeling drained and stressed — it also can lead to feeling a bit unproductive. After all, there’s very little you can do while on the road.
Here are a few productivity hacks that extreme commuters use to make their days a little less stressful:
1. Get The Timing Of Your Commute Right
First things first – your overall goal should be to cut your commute down by as much as possible. Traffic is predictable with a few peak times throughout the day. So schedule your commute to avoid those particularly busy windows of time if you’re willing to be a bit flexible. Consider sopping for coffee at a local café or even grabbing a quick dinner before returning back home, rather than traveling amidst the thick of traffic.
2. Bring A Friend
If you have a particularly long commute, it’s likely that you’ll come across a friend or coworker or two who are going in the same direction. Sharing transport with a friend can make a long commute more enjoyable, as you’re not sitting in silence the whole way. If you use a vehicle as part of your job, such as a truck driver, delivery person, or travelling salesman, you could pick up a friend or colleague along the way and share the cost of gas.
3. Use Audio Tapes And Apps To Learn While Traveling
Audio tapes and apps can be used to take in new information as you commute, which is a great way of being productive. Consider learning a new language on an app such as Duolingo as you travel and your commute will fly by! Audio tapes and audio books are passive experiences so they generally won’t distract you the way that texting or other activities would.
4. Stay Current With The News
You don’t need to rely on the radio for your on-the-go news sources anymore. Consider downloading daily podcasts that cover topics that interest you. Science, literature, entertainment, and sports — all of these topics (and more) have dedicated podcasts that you can listen to on your way to and from your home.
There are some things that you naturally shouldn’t do during your commute, no matter how productive it may seem. For instance, responding to emails and texts, even via voice activation, is usually distracting enough that it can be dangerous. Don’t risk it – leave things like that until you’re off the road.