These travel moments in our day used to be for staring into space and reading novels. These moments used to be breaks for the body and brain from the constant intake and shuffle of information. The morning commute was a time to think about the day ahead and choke down a latte. The evening commute, a wind down from the good, the bad and the ugly the day threw your way. By filling these underground moments with the same ceaseless stream of information and tasks for which you are responsible above ground, you are not allowing yourself a fighting chance to use the time actually meant for emails, meetings and phone calls as productively as you could.
Try this: use your commuting time as a break from the constant chatter of your day
Notice this: you will accomplish more during the hours you have actually designated as “work” time
By recharging your brain and resetting your body and letting the Advil work (necessary from the 25 conference calls you had before the meeting you are going to now) you will arrive back at your to do list ready to go, minus the feeling of exhaustion and burn out you may have now.
So, here is your challenge. For one week DO NOT do work when commuting. I won’t either – seriously. Don’t read reports, Inc. magazine, draft emails, tweets or blogs, make lists, take conference calls in cabs or plot your next empire (except in daydream form). Play an iPhone game, read a novel, wear your sunglasses and covertly stare at other passengers – ANYTHING except work or about work.
Notice how you feel when you climb above ground or out of your cab – are you ready to go? I am.
Post authored by Brooke Stone