You can accomplish A LOT on your new suburban commute…
BY ILANA ARAZIE
We love our new homes and lives in the suburbs, but the commute to the city can be a bit of an adjustment. Most commutes are at least an hour each way, door to door, but it’s worth every minute to get out of the hustle and bustle of city life. Plus, we now get to live in a comfortable home surrounded by nature with actual closet space! Some of us make the most out of our commutes by listening to our favorite podcasts, reading books and even putting on our makeup. One mom told me that her train ride to work is her new favorite part of the day!
Still, there are always ways to make our commutes easier and more enjoyable. Here are some of the best commute hacks we’ve heard:
1. Learn a New Language
Maybe you thought that you were too old to learn a new language, but that’s just not true, especially when you have extra time on your commuter train. Your ride to and from work can be the perfect opportunity to become bilingual. Click onto a podcast like, “The Fluent Show”, read through a foreign language dictionary or spend time on the translation site babbel.com. Whatever you do, use your time on a train like a classroom. Then, once you’ve mastered your lessons, book a vacation to where your new language is spoken for some real practice.
2. Turn Your Commute Into a “Catch Up” Date
Coordinate a once a week “catch up” date with a friend who you don’t get to see enough. Use the time together to check-in while having a drink or two together on the ride home. You might also want to schedule a fun train rendezvous with your spouse. You bring the wine or sake and he brings the sushi!
3. Start a Journal
Instead of reading yet another New York Times Best-seller, start writing your own stories. Journaling about your life is a great way to document these very special years so you can look back one day and remember where you’ve been. Plus, writing about yourself is fun and a great way to release stress. Once your thoughts are down on paper, they are off your shoulders – and who knows, maybe your writing might turn into your own book one day?
Just about every therapist I know prescribes meditation to their clients these days as a way to release anxiety, get centered and feel good. But who has the opportunity to sit still for too long? Well, now you do on your commute! Of course, meditating is not easy but there are some apps that will guide you through it like, “Headspace.” Try sitting in the quiet car and for just 10 minutes, close your eyes and relax. Then work your way up to 20 or even 30 minutes of commuter meditation. Just don’t fall asleep and miss your stop!
5. Recipe Exchange
If there is one task that most moms in the suburbs find challenging, it’s coming up with new recipes for their family dinners. We get stuck in a rut and find it too easy to cook roasted chicken and baked salmon each week. Use your commute to start a recipe exchange and pull your own recipe book together. Email every great woman or man you know and get them to send you their best recipes.
Enjoy your travel time and make the most of your commutes because, with the right plan and attitude, it can be one of the best times of your day!
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