Coming and going. Driving and driving. Lots of oil changes, tire rotations and gas station stops. Racking up miles on your car. It’s the grind of the commuter.
Where I live, it’s the norm. People drive 20, 30, 40 or even 60 minutes (or longer) to get to a job. And when I tell people I commute 60 miles to work each day they say, “that’s crazy!”. After 7 years of commuting, let me tell you my thoughts about it…
Commuting has it’s days where it sucks. I won’t lie about it. But the pros for me outweigh the cons by miles (pun definitely intended!). Good or bad, it is all perception and what you decide to focus on. This is a lesson that can go through your life, not just the annoyance of commuting.
The first year I hated on it. I focused on the time I was wasting and how boring my drive was. I dreaded it. I was miserable. And let me tell you, what you focus on expands. I thought about it, dreaded it and I made it a huge part of my life.
Then I decided that if I was going to be on the road 2 hours each day, then I was going to make the best of the time. I decided that I was going to do the things I needed to do without my kids so I could spend QUALITY time with my kiddos when I get home. Need to call Verizon? Save it for the drive. Need to call my sister to arrange a girls night? Save it for the drive. Want to listen to a podcast about creating a blog? Save it for the drive. I save all my calls, podcasts, audio books and training calls for the drive. Another thing I really focus on while driving is prayer. I think about all the great things I have to be thankful for. A job that provides for my family. A beautiful drive through the loess hills. A healthy family. A wonderful husband. Friends who are fun and positive. I save much of my praying and gratitude statements for the drive.
Another thing I do is practice speeches, talks, presentations, etc. If I have something important to discuss with a friend, I may practice what I want to say so it comes off right when I talk to them. I practice my presentations for my business. I may also practice my vlogs before recording them.
Finally, I clear my mind. Shitty day? Let it go. Anxiety? Let it go. Because when I get out of that car, it’s game time. It’s time to give my A game to the people I work with or, most importantly, my family. I always leave everything at the door (or in my case, in the car). I have podcasts to uplift me (Joyce Meyer is a favorite) and playlists with uplifting music. I make a conscious choice each day to use my commute as a “reset” button on the days things may have been rough.
I want to commend all of the people out there commuting. It is rough at times. You really get to know your mechanic because you are there often getting your oil changed. The gas station attendants get to know you well too! And it does seem like wasted time at times.
But it’s all about perception. Decide to make the best of your commute. What things are you doing at home that could be saved for your drive? Save your gossip session with your mom, being on hold with your cable company, the call to Amazon customer service, or the daily prayer of gratitude for your drive. Utilize your time the best you can and make the best of it. Because life is incredibly short!
Enjoy the Ride,