Daily Commute Hacks

3 Tips to Help you through your Daily Commute


Whether you're hostage to the subway slog or endure the daily cacophony of city traffic, the commute to and from work is generally the worst part of the  day. Research shows that the average weekly commute for the 50 largest U.S. metro areas is just over four and a half hours - and as cities continue to expand, the number keeps growing.

Unsurprisingly, this figure has become a focal point for millennial renters, with a recent survey from the real estate site Trulia reporting that working millennials value shorter commute times and proximity to public transportation over low crime rates when deciding where to live.  


So what’s a forlorn commuter to do while awaiting advances in teleporting? We’ve gathered a few tips below to help alleviate some of the misery:


Talk to someone

The loneliness of the long distance commuter is a very real issue - but talking to your fellow passengers can help. In an experiment conducted by the University of Chicago, commuters on Chicago’s Metra who were asked to engage the passenger next to them in conversation reported a higher level of enjoyment and more positive experience than that of the control group.


So where to start? Try a small compliment or fall back on the old faithful of conversational topics: the weather, and take it from there!


Work it out

Sitting on the subway or behind the wheel for long stints isn’t just stressful, it’s bad for your health. The health benefits, both physical and mental, for cycling or walking to work are innumerable, with recent research showing that just 15 minutes of exercise a day can increase your life expectancy by three years. Can’t walk or bike? Offer your seat up to a stranger - aside from the boost from altruism, standing will help to counteract the deadly consequences of sitting for prolonged periods of time and burns 30% more calories.

And for those of you glued to your seat? There’s always  the classic commuter crunch.


Learn something new

There are literally thousands of high-quality podcasts readily available at your fingertips - if nothing else, why not use your commute as an opportunity for self improvement? Might we suggest a few:


Tackle a new language in just 20 minutes a day: Through their “Coffee Break Series,” Radio Lingua Network offers award winning courses in French, Spanish, Italian and German - complete with video content and comprehensive notes from each lesson.

Rule the water coolor with Slate's Magazine Daily Podcast: From political gabfests to in-depth reviews of the latest releases in literature, television and theater, Slate delves into the zeitgeist of modern America with podcasts that are both informative and enjoyable.

Get a leg up on the corporate ladder: Whether you’re just starting out or looking to breath new life into your career, Accidental Creative provides invaluable tools for boosting your productivity, while Beyond the To Do List dispenses advice on staying centered in the workplace as a means of reaching your best, most creative self.