How to make your commute more constructive

With the 9-5 working model fast becoming a thing of the past and the world of business becoming increasingly fast paced and demanding, professionals are looking to cram in extra hours wherever and whenever they can. The daily commute can be make for the ideal time to get a head start on your working day and help you tick off at least one thing from your to-do list before you’ve even landed in the office.

With the buzzing whirlwind that is the 21st Century, it’s more than likely that during the morning and evening commute, you often find yourself sitting in miles of rush hour traffic, vibrating with anger at the sheer audacity of fellow commuters trying to get home. But instead of doing your blood pressure some serious mischief, why not use the time more productively to get an advantage on the week ahead? The great thing is, good old modern technology is right behind us on this one to help us do exactly that.

Get a head start on calls – Car journeys are particularly great for this but with hands-free technology only! We repeat, hands-free technology only. You’re sat alone in a quiet atmosphere, so why not get some business calls out the way so you don’t have to allocate time to them later in the day. You’ll feel less rushed and therefore able to engage in a much more pleasant conversation.

Before we continue, we would just like to make a little disclaimer: The following activities should only be performed if you are commuting via public transport. We do not ever condone the use of mobile devices while driving or operating a vehicle. Now, let’s proceed…

Get on top of your emails – If you’re more likely to frequent public transport, then using the commute time to organise your emails is a great way to get a head start. Find a comfortable place to sit and get on top of the reading and replying that usually eats into a good hour of your morning. Immediately feeling snowed under by the hundreds of messages that have been piling into your inbox overnight will start the day off on a bad foot so nip it in the bud before you even get there.

Update your accounts – Technology can be both a blessing and a curse but when it provides you with Wi-Fi access on public transport, the world is definitely doing something right. An internet connection means you can access cloud software, like our own bookkeeping service, from anywhere at any time so you can ensure your accounts are up to date before your accountant is calling you mid-morning to check in.

Refresh social media – Active social media channels are vital for customer engagement and reputable search ranking but with so many other things to do, pleasantries like replying to tweets and sharing Facebook posts can fall by the wayside. While you’re sat at what seems to be every single red light on the way from A to B, take the chance to scroll through your social feeds and see what your customers are talking about. Reply, interact, share, like, follow – do what you gotta do to keep your online visibility in check.

Prepare for the day ahead – Have you got an important business meeting or presentation coming up that day? Great, well now’s your chance to double, triple and quadruple check that you’ve got your notes in order, all necessary preparation is done and make sure you’re well-rehearsed. Practice makes perfect but doing the Metro Sudoku will only get you so far, so use your time more wisely.

Catch up on news – Staying in the loop with the goings on in your industry is crucial for staying on top of your game. This doesn’t have to mean a mad dash to the corner shop on the way to the station to pick up a stack of daily newspapers though. Almost all popular publications now have a mobile app, which means you can stay up to date on the move. No excuses!

Stay ahead of deadlines – Apps are one of man’s greatest inventions and they don’t just let you catch up on the latest headlines, they also enable you to make your desktop portable. There is an abundance of applications that mean you can store and edit your documents on the go, so you can steal valuable extra time when creeping closer to important deadlines.

Make time to exercise – Okay so we aren’t suggesting you start lunging down train carriages or doing laps around the bus station but swapping the car for a bicycle, or wheels for walking can go a long way towards improving your health. Physical health is vital for positive mental wellbeing and making small changes like this when you can, can help improve productivity and alertness throughout your working day.

Nurture your hobby – All work and no play is both dull and detrimental to personal wellbeing so why not use the spare time to invest in something you really enjoy? Whether you find sanctuary and satisfaction in reading comic books or knitting scarves, use your commute to indulge in life’s little pleasures and walk into the office in a positive frame of mind with a big smile on your face!

Just relax – All of the above are great ways to make your commute constructive but it’s important to remember that R&R is just as important as going at it hammer and tongs. Taking the time to simply rest, collect your thoughts and enjoy the downtime can be as beneficial as checking emails and making phone calls. Make time to turn your phone off and look out of the window at your surroundings for a change or even catch up on some lost sleep. Everybody functions better after their recommended 8 hours after all.

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