DON'T LET THE TRAFFIC STEAL YOUR LIFE
Commit to yourself that the days and weeks of your life are precious and meant for your passions, your family and to rest yourself.
A close friend of mine told me recently that she comes to her office at 6am in the morning in order to avoid the traffic. She wakes up at 5 before her kids do and is unable to say goodbye to them in the morning. Another smart advertising professional showed me how she often does her hair, nails, make up while being stuck in traffic for 2 hours 1 way.
If you spend more than an hour commuting one way to work then you just lost 3 weeks of your year on the road – for some people that’s more than the entire vacation time you get. If your commute time is 1.5-2 hours one way, then you are losing one and a half months of the year on the road. It’s time lost from work, from family, from fitness and from sleep. A complete and thorough waste, not to mention the enormous stress, pollution and endless waiting that can frustrate the most patient of men
It doesn’t have to be this way. Decide today that you will not let traffic steal your precious life from you. Here are some solutions you can consider implementing immediately that will help you reclaim your life back from traffic
- Meeting Day – If you are in sales or in a customer facing role, make 1 to 2 days meeting days where you do most of your meetings outside of office. Tell your boss and request that you go from home to the clients and then back home, no need to make the detour to the office
- Work from Home Day – If your work primarily involves emails, phone calls and your computer, have you considered doing it from home ? Agree with your entire team a day in the week to being with where you can work from home. tell the boss that the extra 2 hours on the road are now at the service of work and hence better for the company !You will be surprised at how productive you become. It’s a practice adopted by many progressive companies in Asia, where traffic is becoming terrible
- Invest in High Quality Internet – Spend a little extra on a high quality internet connection that is portable and that allows you to stay connected no matter where you are. Once people realize that your working from home does not mean delays in response, they will become more accepting of the solution. Try using Skype for a meeting and see how it feels. Maybe it can replace some face to face meetings and still be as effective.
- Time Away Friday – We always ignore the important for the urgent. Hence once in 2-3 weeks pick a Friday where your team and you go out to a nice location like a park, museum or any other place to do a team activity or a brainstorm on a key topic. Pick a location that is central and convenient for everyone
- Move to a smaller town – Ever worked in a city where office and home are 10 minutes away from each other…It’s a complete delight. Look for the nicest small town where you can work and explore. Who knows, maybe you can walk to work and spend the extra hours with your kids and loved ones.
- Upgrade the Commute – We cannot avoid the commute fully so ask yourself how can I make my commute pleasurable and enjoyable instead of a stressful experience. Is it worth upgrading to a better train / bus or paying more to do a car pool with other people or to use a taxi one way and public transport the other way. Calculate the extra cost per day and per month. Is it worth your peace of mind when you get to work.
- Travel Light – Often our bags, much like the past weigh us down. What if you could leave your bag and it’s heavy contents in office. Would it force you to get work done and travel light ? Not sure ? Try it for a day and see how you feel. you might enjoy the lightness of not lugging around things across town.
Overall, commit to yourself that the days and weeks of your life are precious and meant for your passions, your family and to rest yourself. Don’t lose them to something as inane as traffic. Committ to using atleast one of the seven ways above to reduce, simplify or even eliminate traffic from your life.