Unfortunately the best employment opportunities don’t always come knocking on your front door. A significantly large amount of companies are based directly in and around London, as compared to the rest of the UK. It could therefore be argued that the City of London offers some of the best career job opportunities in the country. For those that choose to take advantage of this, fulfilling those prospects often comes at a cost. With the current state of house prices, that ‘cost’ is most often a lengthy daily commute from towns where property is more affordable.
As per the Office for National Statistics, the average commute time into London is around 40 minutes. If you travel 40 minutes or longer per journey through whatever method, you may be quick to dismiss any advantages of your daily journey.
After a while, such a monotonous routine can often result in a pessimistic attitude towards the long commute – this is when the Sunday evening work dread really begins to kick in. The good news is, the long commute doesn’t always have to be seen as a negative thing. There are a number of advantages that you probably don’t already know you benefit from. As well as this, there are a few productive tweaks you can apply to your daily routine which can increase your productivity. Here’s a list of advantages that a long commute offers:
1 – Power Down
After a stressful day, a long journey home can often give you the opportunity to unwind a little. We understand that the traffic isn’t always perfect and trains are often delayed (especially in the UK), but when it’s going right, you can take the hour to clear your mind. Whether relaxing means listening to your power down playlist or catching up on the latest Netflix series, why not take advantage of a period that you can purely allocate to downtime . You will feel de-stressed when you eventually walk through the front door.
2 – Learn On-The-Go
If you are currently studying, your commute can offer some time to go-over your notes. While not perfect, a train commute is an adequate enough environment to pull out the books and allocate some time to study. Not currently studying for a qualification? Pick a topic that interests you and start learning. This is only going to add to your skill set, which could open the door of opportunity. The key thing to note here is that public transport gives you an element of freedom which other methods of commuting do not offer.
3 – Podcast Variety
If you have to drive to work, the fact that you have to drive yourself doesn’t completely eliminate yourself from learning. Yes – in ways you are limited to what you can do, but there are thousands of informative podcasts based on a catalogue of topics, which can enhance your learning while on the go. Ditch the radio or your Spotify playlist and tune into a podcast of your choice.
4 – Feel Revitalised
Starting your day in a rush can often leave you feeling tired and groggy. A long commute often means the opposite of this, especially with an early 5 or 6am start. It may seem tricky at first but the early start often means by the time you’ve arrived at the office, you’re mentally switched on and ready to tackle the day. Being ready for the office means that your productivity will vastly increase while you are at work.
5 – Burn Those Calories
Did you know that the little run you make to catch the train or the long walk you make everyday to the underground station, all contribute to physical activity that burns calories in your your body? It has been observed by the National Health Organisation that commuting to work, especially for longer periods, has this happy side effect. Obviously the method in which you commute will dictate how many calories you burn, but any calorific deficit can be seen as an advantage. Being active speeds up your metabolism and turns your body into a fat burning machine. Hopefully you now feel slightly better about that change from one underground line to another.
6 – Build Your Network
The more journeys you make to work, the more common faces become. In this situation you have two options: you can either zone out and stare into space, or you can take a chance and speak to the people around you. Commuting gives you a rare opportunity to understand the culture of a place you are living in. Meeting new people on the way back home and understanding their perspective on the city can really be fulfilling. In addition to this, you never really know who you might bump into along your journey. Who knows, you may make good connections, friendships and contacts that will help you grow your personal brand.
The Final Say
If the daily commute is starting to get on your nerves, then always try to remind yourself of the advantages that the journey you are making offers. Whether that’s purely the monetary gain that awaits at the end of the journey or one of the reasons listed above, try and apply a positive mindset when thinking about your trip. We guarantee that this will help you feel better about your day.