Jess Commons | Deputy Editor | Wednesday, 15 April 2015

commute, work, what to do

Productive Things To Do On Your Commute, No Matter How You Get To Work

The Debrief: Because you're an idiot and you feel guilty when you're not doing anything.

Ever feel guilty about how you're not DOING enough with your life? Of course you do. Because despite having a job, maintaining friendships and relationships, paying your bills on time and still finding time to mainline old episodes of Nashville, you STILL you feel inadequate about how little you get done. Especially compared to those douchebags on your Facebook who post pictures of them on work trips to Singapore.

If this were a real lady magazine we'd be all like, 'Oh no, don't worry about it. You're fine, keep on doing what you're doing. Focus on YOU and ignore the social pressures from your peers'. But that's not how things work. No amount of Bruce Willis in Friends style pep talks are going to reverse the damage done by you seeing a peer announce their really cool new fashion collaboration on Instagram. Hell, if we're honest, it's pressures like these that actually make us get shit done. 

The last little bit of free time you've got to spare is probably your commute, so here's how to use that hallowed time to be a Productive Polly.

If you drive
You lucky old sod you. While we appreciate that sitting in a traffic jam on the M5 every morning is a totally fucked way to start the day, we’d take sitting stationary in our own space over sitting stationary in a stranger’s armpit on the train any day. Anyways, in your car you’ve got the luxury of being able to make as much noise as you want, so our suggestion? Stop with the Celine Dion singlaong and use your commute to learn a language with Pimsleur; the much-lauded audiobooks you can get free with an Audible credit that covers every language from Hebrew to Spanish to Swedish to French. If you don’t fancy paying for an Audible subscription then check out Librivox for some possibly unreliable but nevertheless free language learning audio books to download.

If you’ve got a long old journey
There's pros and cons to having a long old commute on a train. While it does take a healthy chunk out of your day, it does also mean that you'll hopefully get a seat. Swings and And getting a seat means you can actually read! Imagine that. Look no further than Michael Acton Smith’s book Calm The Mind Change The World which literally just came out in paperback so no heavy lugging around to be done. This best selling book is all about getting a meditative state of mind without having to sit down and meditate for half an hour every day. Because let’s face it, ain’t nobody got time for that.

If you travel in packed conditions
Perhaps the worst of the commutes are the ones where you have to propeller yourself onto a tube, tram or bus, muscle your way in between a pushchair and a gaggle of school kids and have to spend the whole journey with your arms pinned to your side. If this is the case, you need a podcast stat. And one that’ll help you be productive? Try NPR’s How To Do Everything which’ll teach you to do everything from snogging with braces, to how to stop an email sending that you sent by mistake, to how to survive a flood. Oh, and it’s v funny too. They’re around 20 mins long so if you’ve got a commute longer than that make sure you download a couple so the next one plays automatically.

If you get a damn seat
You lucky lady you. Use your bus, train, car journey to do your workout. People might look at you a little weird but isn’t everyone on their commute a little bit weird? This comic  is super helpful for a few little exercises to do, obviously don't do like, the chest strech but you can rotate your hands and feet no problem. If you can’t stand people looking weirdly at you then stick instead to kegal exercises. Just tense your vagina for five seconds then unclench for five seconds and do that four times in a row. If you’ve already got a super strong vag, try and hold it for ten seconds. Leaky bladder when you’re older? Not over here!

If you cycle
Then congrats. You’re already winning in productivity. 76% of people that cycle to work are more focused at work and 15% feel like they’ve got a better chance of progressing in their job. So sit back, enjoy the ride, and revel in your smuggery.

Like this? Then you might also be interested in:

Podcasts That’ll Make Your Morning Commute A Million Times Better

Here's How To Take Up Cycling If You're A Massive Newbie To The Whole Thing

Reclaim Our Toilet Breaks! Here's What To Do While You're Sat On The Loo

Follow Jess on Twitter @Jess_Commons

Tags: Work it, Tech