Whether it’s two minutes or two hours, what you do with your commute to work can intensely affect your day. Our charge to you: make the most of your commute in an effort to make the most of your day! Who doesn’t want their day to be described as productive, fulfilling, and rewarding? As teachers, we know we have to show up strong and ready to work five days a week for our students and for ourselves. We’ve created a list that will provide you with five ways to start and finish your school day off with a purpose!
Listen to audiobooks! Suitable for: walking, driving or taking the train/bus
If you don’t take enough time to laugh, to escape, or to relax, use your commute to work to entertain yourself by listening to an audiobook. Whether you like mystery novels, romance, or sci-fi, there are millions of books available in an audio version for your listening entertainment. Check out resources like audible.com. You can get your first book for free, and then a paid subscription at $15 a month.
Tip: share a monthly subscription with someone – it’ll be cheaper for both of you!
If you’re not taking advantage of your city’s public library, go sign up, right now!! Another free (yes, FREE!!!!) resource: download the app Overdrive, type in your library card number, and like magic, you will have access to thousands, maybe even millions of free books! We have our phones so readily available to us, so let’s make them useful during our commute to be entertained!
Listen to podcasts! Suitable for: walking, driving or taking the train/bus
Podcast listening is on the rise, and more and more people are starting to listen to podcasts in their cars (like during their commute to work!). What a great and free (again with that f word!) resource for commuters to be informed or motivated. Another benefit of listening to podcasts: there are over 550,000 shows available for the podcaster. From fitness to finances to food, the categories and topics are endless! You are sure to be informed, motivated, and encouraged once you find the podcast that speaks to you and your current goals and focus areas.
Create checklists and to-do lists! Suitable for: taking the train or bus
For some of us, home is definitely where the heart is, but it isn’t always the place where productivity is at its peak. If you commute to work via train or bus, what a perfect time to make lists and check them twice. If you are the type that likes to stay organized through technology, you are in luck because there are 17 million different applications and software programs out there that can help with your to-do lists. If your focus is on productivity and accomplishment, I suggest you add to your current to do-to list to check out this article that lists 24 productivity apps. Some apps are free and others cost money, so there is variety for every type of budget and preference.
Play around with canva or pic collage! Suitable for: taking the train or bus
Have you ever seen those super cute pictures on Instagram and wondered how in the world so many people have such cute photos with stylish fonts? Wonder no more – check out canva.com or piccollage, both of which are available for mobile and desktop. Give yourself something purposeful to create on your commute to work and… create! Have fun with it! Play around with it! Look at something motivational or inspirational and create it in such a way that is your own. And then: publish it! Give your creative self a pat on the back and post your work.
Be a learner
Learn a new language! Suitable for: walking, driving or taking the train/bus
Have you ever sort of, kind of, maybe been keen on learning a new language but weren’t quite sure how to start? How about: during your commute to work! Like Canva, duolingo.com is available as a mobile app or desktop program and walks you through lessons, helping you learn a new language. Duolingo requires screen interaction, so this resource would be best for the bus or train commuter; radiolingua.com however offers hands-free podcast lessons and would be safest for the walking or driving commuter.
Tip: to avoid burnout, try to mix up the purpose for each commute on a daily basis!
- Mondays – you could listen to podcasts for motivation
- Tuesdays – you could create your lists for what you need to accomplish for the rest of the week
- Wednesdays – you could brush up on your spanish skills
- Thursdays – you could tap into your creative gene and work on a personalized project
- Fridays – you could crank up the tunes and sing at the top of your lungs (if you’re in your own car – or open to public performances)
Based on this list, pick the purpose that speaks the most to you and start there. We know that no teacher enjoys wasting their time, especially on a long commute to work, so we hope this advice, along with other time saving hacks can help you get a little more out of each day.