How to Use Your Work Commute Effectively

The hours we spend getting to and from the office can really add up over time.  If you find yourself sitting for lengthy periods of time during your commute, consider some of the following ways to use your commute more effectively:

Listen to Podcasts

Podcasts are a great way to entertain yourself or catch the news on your commute.  I recommend browsing through NPR’s podcasts as well as the iTunes store to try a few different shows.  Want to learn a different language? Try CoffeeBreak.

A few of my favorite podcasts include: RadioLabThe Lively ShowAfter the Jump, and Mystery Show.

Listen to AudioBooks

If you’re looking for something to keep you engaged over multiple commute trips, listen to book in digital format. Audible and Amazon both offer ways to download audiobooks.

Reflect

There’s something cathartic about getting your thoughts on paper.  Clear your mind of the mess of the day on the way home.  Or, start by spending some time reflecting or setting positive intentions for the day on the way to work in the morning.  You can go for the old fashioned pen and paper version or download a journaling app like Day OneHeyday, or Askt for high-tech or photo-journaling options. If you’re driving, or would rather talk than write, consider a voice recording or transcribing app like Evernote or Dragon Dictation.

Get Creative

Sure, you can’t bust out the paints and canvas on the train or subway ride, but you could jump into a meditative state by coloring in an adult coloring book (all the rage for stress relief these days) or doodling zentangle style.

Read Up

Set up accounts with apps like feedly or Flipboard to customize news tailored to you.  Input your favorite blogs and websites so you can easily scan the day’s latest posts.  If you find yourself coming across articles throughout the day that you don’t have time to read on the spot, consider clipping them to Evernote or saving them for a later read using Pocket.  To get a fun and easy-to-understand recap of the latest news everyday, check out The Skimm.

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What other ways do you find to make the most of your commute?  I encourage you to take advantage of the alone time you get going to and from work each day!