For many employees, the commute can be the hardest part of the day. Whether you are on a packed train or stuck in seemingly never-ending traffic, your commute can be stressful and painfully dull. On top of that, you are probably tired and not looking forward to the mountain of work that awaits you on your desk.

Staring into space and dreaming of your impending holiday to pass the time can be a fun release, but it’s not always the best way to spend a very important part of your day.

Instead, you can use your commute to be very productive and stay on top of your tasks. You can learn new skills, sharpen your mind and go into work fresh, excited and ready to take on the world.

Here are some top productive tasks that you can do while commuting to avoid wasting time and get the most out of your day.

1. Wireless admin

While riding the train or the bus into work, there’s no point staring blankly out of the window when you can get a head start on the working day by doing some admin on your phone or your laptop. The satisfaction that you will gain from clearing your inbox before you even get into work will put you in the right frame of mind and give you the boost that you need.

2. Read a book

Reading every day can help you in many ways, and one of the most beneficial aspects of reading is how it improves your commute; not only does it make time fly by but also stimulates your mind. You can read some fiction for entertainment, or you can read some industry articles to get you in the working mindset.

3. Catch up on the news

You can stay on top of the news by buying a newspaper before you set off or checking up on the news on your phone as you ride into work. Not only does this take your mind off of the boring commute but it also gives you something to chat about over the water cooler.

4. Podcasts/audiobooks

Listening to podcasts and audiobooks is a great way to get the benefits of reading while driving into work. You can even download podcasts that are specific to your line of work which can help you enter the office with brand new ideas and a fresh perspective.

5. Make notes on your current project

They key to staying productive is staying focused on things that are important. If you want to make the best of your time before you get into work, a great tip is to make a few notes on the project you are currently working on that month. Being away from the buzz of the office can get you to see things in a different light and spark a breakthrough that wouldn’t have happened otherwise.

6. Contact fellow workers and make a plan for the day

If you have fellow workers who also suffer from unproductive commutes you can coordinate morning phone calls as you both set off toward the office and talk about what tasks you are going to tackle that day. Not only does this make the commute more productive, but it also makes your whole day very goal orientated.

7. Make a to-do list for the day (inside and outside of work)

Just as making notes on your current project keeps your mind stimulated and gets you excited about tackling your tasks for the day, making a to-do list also keeps you super productive. You don’t have to make it about work either; you can write a to-do list about what you have to do at home or over the weekend.

8. Play mind stimulating games

It’s not all long lists and admin; you can also play games to stay productive. There are a wide array of great brain-stimulating games on the market that will make the journey fly by and whip your mind into shape and prepare you for a long day at work.

There are plenty of alternatives to wasting your time on your commute. All you have to do is make a conscious effort, and you can start turning your commute into the most productive part of your day.

About the Author:
Elizabeth Lee is a blogger constantly trying to find additional motivation and stay productive in whatever she does. Currently a part of the team behind PACK & SEND, Elizabeth is often found sharing her thoughts and ideas about