I've heard many times that a long daily commute isn't a great thing. In my case, it takes me almost an hour to and from work each day, and that's if I don't hit any major traffic problems. I spend about 2 - 2.5 hours a day in my car. Yaaayy.
Commutes can be inconvenient and draining, but for a lot of us, they’re a fact of working life. The average American commutes for about 38 minutes a day. And while this can be the ideal time to catch up on a podcast or read the news, research shows that what we do with these windows of time can make a big difference.
According to a recent study from Harvard Business School, using commute time to mentally prepare for the upcoming day is the way to go. Sleeping and scrolling through social media on the train are fun and all (this study obviously didn't include Floridians because there ain't no commuter train here!), but this research finds that the best way to utilize your commute time is to “set goals, strategize, and focus on the day ahead.”
Basically, too many people use their commute time to “mentally escape” the stress of their day, instead of actively preparing for it. That leaves workers with lower morale, less productivity, and more overall dissatisfaction. So when you’re on the bus or the train heading to work, using that time to get ready for what’s heading your way in the office will make you more productive later on. And you can’t say the same about Instagram.
I think the idea of using your commute to mentally prepare for the day is a great one. But in places like Tampa Bay where there's no train, and the bus takes 3 hours to reach your destination, most of us are left with driving as the only option, unless you're fortunate enough to work close enough to your home that you can ride a bike or walk. So I'd like to suggest that instead of zoning out, focus on the road. kthanks. ;)
Maybe take 5 minutes of "me time" in the morning to concentrate and plan for the day ahead before getting in the car?