The Monday after New Year meant most were heading back to work. And if you work in Sydney, you just might be getting into the office now. Broken traffic lights led to hours-long commutes that people weren’t quite prepared for the first day back from holiday. With George Street closed for repairs, several people sat frustrated on buses and in their cars.
Now, if you commute in Sydney, hopefully you take public transportation so you at least have something to do to pass the increasing traffic times between home and work. However, if you don’t and are stuck in a traffic jam like today’s, you’re going to need a way to pass the time.
Here are a few suggestions. Remember, keep it hands free!
Start that book you’ve been meaning to for ages.
You can even do this hands free! (I’m not kidding.) Sometimes people relegate audio books into a category containing old ladies that have bad eyesight, but that doesn’t have to be the case. If you had started one of last year’s bestsellers in the car this morning, you could have already been three hours into the audio track. And it’s not just for entertainment value. Depending on your tastes in novels, you could improve your vocabulary—most of the classics have passed their copyright, meaning many are free. Also, your ability to focus can be improved, and listening could help you through the stressful commute without losing your cool.
Make your grocery or to-do list.
No writing it down, ladies and gentlemen. If you have a smartphone, chances are is that there is some kind of dictation app or software available: my iPhone 5s has Voice Memos. If you can stomach the sound of your own voice on playback, this is a great way to eat up some time and be productive.
Catch up with the office or loved ones.
It should be noted that your attention is divided while talking on the phone and driving, even when it’s hands free. That being said, if you are in bumper to bumper traffic with no movement in sight (and it’s not a ridiculously early hour), you have a great opportunity to get started on the day’s correspondence. Is your assistant already in the office? Give him or her a call and get your morning update done remotely. Haven’t called your mum in a while? You’ve got the perfect opportunity to be the loving son or daughter with the perfect excuse to cut the conversation short if you start to move.