The thought of commuting, especially when relying upon public transport strikes fear into the hearts of workers all across the land, but there are some advantages.
The commute to your place of work can actually be a great opportunity to learn a new skill, brush up on life admin or just observe all the characters lurking around on the train or bus.
Here are some tips and ideas that will definitely improve your commute.
1. Wear comfy shoes
Yep those shiny smart shoes looked great online, and compliment your power outfits for work beautifully, but you realised they have a sinister side to them the moment you have to break out into a power walk for the train.
Leave those shoes at work, and invest in a comfortable pair of trainers. Not only will it make running for transport easier, it will also keep your precious twinkle toes warm.
2. Find good music
Think back to when you were younger and you knew exactly which songs were new and you spent all your time discovering different types of music. And then you started working and became more involved with things like performance reviews and spreadsheets.
Well your commute is the perfect chance to devise the perfect soundtrack for your journey. You’ll be surprised at what you will find.
3. Or an interesting podcast
If music isn’t your thing, then there is a whole range of free podcasts to tune into, covering topics like current affairs, history and sports.
And it will give you something to talk about during lunch with your colleagues, and make you look very cultured and fancy.
4. Plan ahead
There are a whole range of apps to help minimise the risks of being late, encountering a cancelled train and these will help reduce your commuter rage.
Always plan your journey ahead, and it’s a good idea to use an app to map your exact route as soon as you wake up, as they provide live traffic updates.
5. Walk as much as possible
It’s tempting to get on a bus for ten minutes rather than walking for thirty, but just think of what a good exercise opportunity you are passing up.
You’ll end up feeling more fit, saving on travel fare and getting a good dose of fresh air.
6. Life admin
You know all those things like booking a dentist appointment, or doing your online grocery shopping or writing a letter of complaint that you swear you never have time for?
Well the commute is a great time to catch up on life admin and you will be amazed at just how much you can tick off on your to do list.
7. Learn a new skill
Sitting or standing in one spot can get boring, but not if you’re using the time to learn more skills like a new language on an app, or doing an online course on your phone or even knitting a basic design.
8. Finish that reading list
Remember how you have that book collection slowly piling up in the corner of your bedroom? And you’re always maintaining that you will get round to reading it, but then you never do?
Your commute is a decent time to sink into a good book. Not only will it mean being able to avoid all eye contact with everyone else, but you will finally get through that list.
9. Avoid eye contact
It’s just awkward, it invites conversation and it should be avoided at all costs.
Especially if you are commuting in London, because your friendly eye contact will not be appreciated by anyone.
10. Try to keep calm
It can get crowded, it can get pushy and sometimes the hardest part of your day isn’t what happens at work, but actually the ordeal of getting to work and back. Keep in mind it’s only for a short part of your day, and keep some snacks and a bottle of water nearby to keep yourself calm.
11. Umbrella please
Congratulations, you live in the United Kingdom, aka the land of constant grey skies and a lot of rain.
Best invest in a decent strong umbrella, next to headphones it will be your greatest source of comfort during the journey.
12. Invest in appropriate clothing
Think back to that raincoat you got one year for a festival and decided you would never use it again. Or those extra thick wooly gloves that are buried in your drawer.
Dig these out, because they will be your secret weapon to keeping dry and snug at 7am in the freezing cold.
13. Observe and enjoy
And if you really cannot find any joy in the thought of your daily commute well simply look around and observe the eccentric characters all around you.
Like the stressed out parent trying to keep control over three children at 7.30am, or the man with the dog large enough to pass for a pony.