If you have finally crawled your way up the corporate ladder or you own your own business, you may finally be able to afford to live in a beautiful house off the beaten path. For others, your dream job may simply be in a nearby city you would never consider living in, or maybe your position is temporary while you look for something closer to home.
No matter why you find yourself spending way more time in the car to and from work than you would like, it can be unpleasant, to say the least. It doesn’t have to be! There are things you can do to make your commute safer and more pleasant when you’re stuck behind the wheel.
Practice Safe Driving
The best thing you can do while you’re driving to and from work is pay attention to the road. Unfortunately, as we drive the same route day-in and day-out, it’s easy to get distracted. When we get distracted, we are more likely to get into a car accident.
If you take the interstate, things can be even more dangerous. In one recent survey of police data, it was found that 415,000 crashes involved large trucks, which can be devastating for truck drivers, but a crash with a truck is even more devastating for those driving smaller vehicles.
Do yourself a favor and pay attention to the road as if you were taking this way to work for the first time. Do all the things you learned in driver’s ed, like keeping plenty of distance between you and other cars, signaling whenever you turn, and slowing down in inclement weather.
Upgrade Your Car
There’s a lot of debate about whether to buy a new car or a used car. It really is a matter of preference, but if you spend a lot of time driving to and from work every day, you should upgrade your vehicle more often than if you had a shorter commute.
Not only is driving a new-to-you-vehicle more fun, which will make your drive more enjoyable, but new safety features are also being included in cars every day. By updating your car every year or two, you can take advantage of those new safety features, which will make your drive safer.
Unplug From Technology
If you have a long commute, you’re probably tempted to get a head start on your work for the day. Although it can feel like you’re wasting time in the car, you shouldn’t spend it checking your email or answering text messages. Taking your eyes off the road for even a second can spell disaster.
While you’re at it, consider unplugging from technology altogether. Disable Bluetooth capabilities in your car and avoid taking any calls. Unplugging from technology can help you recharge after work, and it can help you get in the right state of mind before work.
Find Ways To Pass the Time That You Enjoy
There’s a lot of great advice out there on how you can pass the time as a passenger, but what do you do if you’re stuck behind the wheel of a car?
You aren’t completely out of luck! Texting, browsing the internet, and watching TV definitely aren’t recommended, but there are some other things you can do:
- Create special playlists to listen to on your way to and from work
- Listen to podcasts
- Listen to an audiobook
- Play a road game with yourself (like finding a car of every color)
- Mentally prepare for an important meeting at work
Change When You Get There
Work clothes aren’t the most comfortable. Not only can pants pinch and shirts ride up in the back, driving in heels is especially dangerous. Do yourself a favor and wear comfortable driving clothes and change when you get to work.
That doesn’t necessarily mean your entire outfit needs to be changed, and you don’t have to plan two different outfits for every day. Wear a sweater instead of a suit jacket in the car, keep a pair of sweatpants in your trunk, and only bring heels when you have an important meeting.
Driving to and from work isn’t very much fun, and it can be even worse if you have a long commute, but it doesn’t have to be so bad! When you use it as an opportunity to focus and unwind, you may even find that you enjoy the time you spend alone in your car.