Time Management Series: Make The Most Of Your Commute

 
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Ever get to about Thursday and wish you could add a few more days to the week?

Running out of time to get tasks done at work, adding to the running grocery list in your phone, hearing about another TV show/book/podcast/restaurant recommendation from a friend - the time struggle is real.

Where The Light Plays wants to help out. I’ll share a monthly time management post on how to claw some precious minutes back in the day. Today, we’re looking at the power of the commute. And if you work for yourself or from home, thank your lucky stars!

Audio books

This is one area I personally feel a fair amount of guilt. I have so many books I want to read - from classics to personal development titles, my bookshelves and Kindle are rammed with unread tomes.

Enter the audio book. Once you get over the number of hours it will take to listen to the book (up to 20+hours anyone?) plug your headphones in and get on with your commute.

I do find super detailed and in-depth books can be a little difficult to listen to via audio - we all have to focus to cross the road or step on the train, so sometimes I miss important details. But it’s a great way to get consuming literature. My favourite so far? Animal Farm by George Orwell.

And for those more detailed books? Stick your current read in your tote bag and you’ll be amazed how much you can get through either on your commute or while waiting at various points throughout the day.

Podcasts

I am a complete podcast junky. I know which days my favourite podcasts are coming out through the week and make sure they’re in my phone before I walk out the door in the morning. They are great when you’re commuting, if you walk at lunchtime (do it!) or even at the gym as a good distraction from the pain of lifting weights. My favourites are:

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Emails

In line with my discussion on eating frogs, getting into work and being consumed by email can leave you achieving very little of what you set out to complete for the day.

My solution when I know I’m drowning in email? Check them on the train - file those you don’t need to respond to, respond quickly to those that you can and flag any that need your attention, preferably later in the day. Then when you arrive, you can get straight on to your to do list for the day and know emails are somewhat taken care of. The theory of ignoring email until later in the day terrifies me so this is my happy medium.

Phone calls

Last year, I finally upgraded my first car. I was skyrocketed from the early ‘90s to the mid-’10s and the world of bluetooth. “Oooh” I hear you say. OK, I was a little behind.

I love it! When I’m driving to work, or to see a client, or to visit friends on the weekend, I make some phone calls. I know it’s not as common anymore but calling someone for a chat cuts through the social media and reams of text messages, and usually leaves me in a better mood.

How do you make the most of your commute?

And as part of the new series, in what area do you need the most time management help?