It’s hard to get sick of listening to music on the subway, or catching a nap on your ferry ride home each day. But those hours add up. The average American commute (all modes of transportation) is 200 hours per year, or about 9 full days.
So if you want to do something besides play on your phone, take the opportunity to learn something new. You’re already taking advantage of tax-free savings thanks to your commuter benefits, so why not apply the money to education in its many forms.
Here’s 3 ways you can use your commuting time to improve your career:
1 – Listen to an inspiring or educational podcast
There are thousands (upon thousands) of podcasts for careers, education, trends and the like. Don’t feel like searching? You can easily find curated lists posted throughout the internet on any topic you’d like.
But you don’t have to think climbing the corporate ladder either. Moving your career forward could mean better financial, emotional and physical wellness. If your company isn’t offering these programs, it’s important you get a motivational boost from someplace else.
Take advantage of podcasts in your field or areas of interest — all while riding the subway or navigating the highway on your morning commute.
2 – Take a home study class, get certified or just read
It’s hard to miss an ad for a home study course today. Udemy, Coursera and others all offer video courses, some at a deep discount. If you get good wifi reception on your commute, there’s no better time to settle in and learn something that can help you get a better job at your company or move on to something else.
Commuting time is always a good time to study up for a certification for professional licenses or to obtain a level of expertise in specific areas of your career.
And if you don’t feel like studying, there’s always a good book. Ebooks or good old-fashioned paper books can deliver the same knowledge or inspiration as a class or podcast.
3 – Networking
It’s who you know, right? You don’t have to network with strangers on the train. But you could use the time to make lists, draft emails and write letters to connect with the right people. Since you are in transit, there’s no better time to commit to taking the steps to reach out to people you can help — or who may want to help you.
We know you’re smart. You take advantage of your commuter benefits. So continue to make the most of your commute by spending some time getting ahead in your career.
Since you are here, take a look at these blog posts to make more of your commute:
If you want to learn more about commuter benefits, download the 101 Guide below: