How to Make Your Commute More Productive


Driving can be therapeutic at times, but more often than not, it isn't. Most of the time is spent sitting in traffic on your way to work. The average Australian spends TEN FULL DAYS A YEAR commuting! Here's some ways you can make your commute more productive. 

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Unless I was driving casually on a Sunday listening to some nice music, I generally didn't enjoy driving. Mostly because I don't like wasting time, and driving can be a huge time suck, especially when you're sitting in traffic. Sitting in traffic in my opinion is one of the biggest wastes of time. However! There's a solution, and this is something I realised about two years ago that actually made me enjoy driving, regardless of traffic or time spent driving.

Audio Books

Audio books are a great way to learn something new, but even better for making the most of your driving / transport time. I've actually noticed that I listen better when I'm driving, because I'm not distracted by anything else. If you listen to an audio book while you're doing something else, you can get distracted and zone out. There's so many good ones available from a variety of sources, although something I think you'll find most effective is Audible. If you sign up you get your first one free. If you're not sure what you should download and listen to, I've also attached a link to my other article 'Great Books for Entrepreneurs'  which has a solid list to choose from.


Podcasts

Another awesome way to take in useful information, and they can be a bit more fun than audiobooks because they often have a funky host. They're also usually split into episodes of around 30 - 60 minutes , so you can listen to one or two depending on your commute, rather than an audiobook that takes a few days to finish. Here's four I recommend that I listen to. I've attached links to iTunes, if you don't have an iPhone just search the name and get it on your appropriate platform. 

Start Up Podcast by Gimlet  


Start Up Podcast by Gimlet  

Young Entrepreneur Lifestyle


Young Entrepreneur Lifestyle

Seth Godin's Startup School. 


Seth Godin's Startup School. 

The #AskGaryVee Show


The #AskGaryVee Show


Make an Important Phone Call

Driving is a great time to kill two birds with one stone. Get from A to B, and get a phone call done and out of the way. Phone calls can be time consuming, especially when you're trying to get something else done, so doing it while you drive can actually be super productive. If you're just having a chat, you're better off doing the other things recommended in this article, but if it's a business call, go for it (hands free of course!). 

The Recognition Game: Strengthening Your Focus. 

This is a game I made up myself after watching one of Jordan Belfort's modules from his Straight Line Persuasion system. Something you may or may not have heard of before, is your RAS: Reticular Activating System. Your RAS is a filter against all the 'data' you absorb around you. Have you ever wanted a particular car, then you end up seeing it everywhere? Have you ever bought a new piece of clothing, and then start seeing other people wearing the same one? This is your RAS working, and my game helps to strengthen your focus by using it. I will note that it's not very effective at night time, because everything is dark. 

Here's the game: While you're driving, pick a colour. Let's say you pick red. Now look around at absolutely everything that's red (obviously keeping your eyes on the road too so you don't die). You will literally shock yourself by how much red you are seeing, and the details you pick up on. Try and find the smallest, least obvious, most difficult to spot piece of red. Then switch colours, pick green. Now you won't be seeing any red at all, and everything is green! You can switch colours as much as you like, you'll notice when you're focusing on one colour, you've completely forgotten the previous one. 

Whether this is actually effective, I don't know, I'm not a brain scientist. But for me it strengthens my focus and when I apply that focus to work later, I get things done. Here's a video about your RAS and how it works.

Voice Recording

Obviously you can't write while you're driving, so if you're brain storming or having a think about some things, use a voice recorder to record your notes so you don't lose them. Go over these later, and if there's some nuggets of gold in there, write it down and act on them!

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Try some of these next time you drive, or when you're on your way to work. It's an effective way to make more of your time, and also learn something new. And feel free to continue listening outside of the car of course! 

MITCH HILLS
@mitchills
 


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