One perk of working from home: You suddenly have one, two, or even more hours suddenly free that would previously have been dedicated to your commute. There are many ways you could use this time: You could sleep in a little later or spend extra time with family, both of which would be perfectly acceptable and enjoyable uses. But your commute time has always been a very personal and individual time, so why not use it for something personal? Perhaps even something new? Here are three ways you could use your old commute time.
1. Learn a New Skill
Have you always wanted to learn a new language, or knit a sweater, or bake scones from scratch? Use this time to do so! Trying something new, especially something fun and exciting, will help boost your creativity and your mood, so you’ll be more alert and ready to interact with callers throughout the workday. Bonus points if the activity takes you away from your computer screen, so you’ll feel fresher when you finally sit down to work.
2. Create a New Habit
Establishing morning and evening habits are tricky—mornings can often feel too short to get anything done, while fatigue from the workday makes it difficult to muster the energy to do extra tasks after 5:00pm. But having this newfound time in the morning and the evening is the perfect opportunity to create new habits. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to start your day with a pour-over coffee or exercise at the end of the day. If you create these habits now and maintain them long enough to feel the effects, you’ll be much more likely to find ways to stick with them when the office reopens.
3. Sharpen Your Mind
While interacting with and responding to callers can be an interesting challenge, like any job it strengthens a particular mental muscle, so it can be beneficial to use your old commute time to sharpen others. Read a book, listen to an audiobook or podcast, do a crossword puzzle or a sudoku, or write in a journal—anything that will foster your personal curiosity. A curious person is a happy person, and a happy person is a better friend, relative and employee.
The bottom line: Even if you’ve been working from home for weeks, it’s not too late to add something new to your routine that will improve your productivity and boost your mood.