5 Ways to Get More Out of Your Commute

By Adrienne Erin - Writer

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How much time do you spend every day sitting in your car? Now multiply that by 365. That’s a lot of time wasted each year.

Your commute to work doesn’t have to be spent listening to the same songs from the same radio station every morning — and afternoon — though. You can use this time to learn, innovate and be productive. You obviously shouldn’t read a book or create a presentation while you’re driving. However, there are plenty of ways to make this time in the car useful.

Here are five ways to get more out of your commute:

1. Listen to Podcasts

Imagine radio shows that are informative, entertaining and compelling — and you can listen to them whenever you want to. Welcome to the world of podcasts.

Although they have been around for over a decade, podcasts gained mainstream popularity after the success of Serial, and now there are so many incredible podcasts you can listen to during your commute.

If there’s an industry you’re interested in, chances are there are podcasts where authority figures talk about their creative processes. You can learn about history, science and just about anything in between from podcasts. If you want to enjoy a good laugh before work, then you’re in luck because there are numerous comedy podcasts such as:

2. Listen to an Audiobook

Much like podcasts, you can also learn a lot from audiobooks. We live in a world where everything is moving fast, so the idea of sitting down and reading a book isn’t the most appealing thought for some people. That’s why listening to audiobooks is one of the best ways to get the most out of your commute.

Just about any book is available as an audiobook. You can learn something new or take yourself on an adventure. Either way, you’ll be entertained on your way to and from work.

3. Plan Your Day

Out of the 128 million people who drive to work, 78% drive alone. This is the perfect time to plan your day.

You’ll probably be busy at work from the moment you walk through the door — meaning little to no time to plan what you want to accomplish. Not having a plan in place creates the potential for the entire day to be unorganized — and maybe even a little chaotic.

Use this time alone in the car to think about everything you have to do, the importance of each task and how long it’ll take you.

4. Learn a New Language

Ever thought about traveling the world? Get a head start by sitting in your car.

There are many different audio programs that teach you foreign languages. Not only are they very helpful, but they also work.

It’s scientifically proven that listening to language is the best way to learn it. Learning a new language will help you in your professional and personal life, and it’s a challenge that will make your commute more enjoyable.

5. Record Yourself

Do you ever get that “Aha!” moment while driving, and then completely forget what it was by the time you get to where you need to be?

You probably come up with a lot of great ideas in the car because your phone or TV doesn’t constantly distract you. You are sitting alone, so you’re forced to think about that innovative idea.

Record yourself while driving so you don’t miss out on the moment the light bulb over your head finally lights up. You’ll also be able to go back and listen to yourself talking the problem through, which could be helpful later on.

You commute can be used to learn something new and grow as a person. It’s time to turn off the radio and spend your time more wisely!

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