Commuting to work is the pits. If you’re unlucky enough to sit in bumper-to-bumper traffic to get to the office while simultaneously trying to not lose your mind, we have a proposition for you. Use this time to be more productive!
The national average of time Americans spend commuting, round trip, is about 50 minutes. That doesn’t account for the “megacommuters” that spend over 3 hours on the road. Instead of turning up the radio to drown out your screams, you could be using this time to multitask. Studies have shown that this will actually help your commute feel less awful. Slate has given some tips on what you can do while sitting in your car to actually help you become more efficient. And we couldn’t agree more with their ideas.
Their first idea is to plan your day. It may be the last thing you want to do, seeing as how you are probably feeling like turning your car around and going home at this point. But it helps to schedule your time out. In fact, we here at The Methodology Blog are big fans of using apps to improve productivity. So checking out something like Timeful, which is free, can really benefit you. Timeful is an awesome calendar and to-do list wrapped into one, if you have an iPhone. If you don’t, you can check into Any.do. This will allow you to plan out your day, week, or even month with easy to use options and syncing abilities.
Now, we don’t condone using your phone while driving. So if you’re stuck in traffic and going no where fast, or use public transportation, this is a great option. Otherwise, you can always record your notes for the day to input into your apps for later when you finally make it into the office. This is where Evernote comes in handy. We have talked about how awesome Evernote is at boosting productivity growth, and here’s another reason. It has a voice recording function. It really can do everything.
If you have made your list for the day and are still stuck behind the wheel, maybe you can get a head start with your email. We all know that sifting through emails is pretty much a big pain in the you know what. So why not start now? You can use an app called ASAM. This will read your emails out loud to you so you can stay hands free while driving. Not only that, but it will transcribe your dictation into an email and send it off for you. But if you’re stuck on a bus and have the option to sit back and read, try using Medeley or Papers. These apps organize your documents by author, year, journal, or topic. You can also tag, or dog ear, pages to come back to later.
If you prefer to not have to work on your way into work, that’s totally understandable. So why not take care of some other mounting tasks that are looming over you? Why not pay some of your bills? Or make that doctor’s appointment you keep putting off. In fact, there’s an app for that, too. FastCustomer is the middleman when it comes to dealing with companies. You simply input the name of the company you’re looking to get in touch with and they have a customer service representative contact you. That means zero time spent on hold listening to soft rock from the 90’s. Or, if you really want to be bold, take this time to learn a second language. Duolingo is totally free and will help you really nail a new language quickly.
Looking for more ways to stay productive? Reach out to our business improvement consultants today!