Find out what commuting to work and getting a college degree have in common.
I spend a lot of time in my car traveling for my job. In fact, when I tell people how much time I spend in my car I usually get a look as if I’ve lost my mind. Well, I’ve discovered that the time away and particularly in my car is not a waste of time. In fact, you can get more done in your vehicle to and from work than you probably realize.
You see, I found out that one of the reasons why people have the perception that I’m wasting time is because of what they are doing when they are commuting. It turns out that most people who travel either do one of three things (listen to the radio, think about stuff or yell and curse at the other people on the road). Ok so maybe they do all those at one time. I remember getting in my car and before I made a block i was either worrying about something or wasting my time getting frustrated with traffic.
I have found a better way to use my time appropriately and do something that adds value to my life. Zig ZIglar called it automobile university. Zig Ziglar told a story about how he would listen to these (at the time) audio cassettes of motivational speakers or teachers that would speak on something he wanted to learn. (usually personal or professional development).
After I heard him use this concept I said to myself I’m wasting every second that I don’t use this opportunity. And with today’s technology it’s easy to download a book on a subject I want to learn and listen to it on the way to work.
Now, you might be thinking Beau i’m just not all into that stuff like you are. In fact I like my car rides to be peaceful where I don’t have to think at all.
I would say that is fine if that is what you're doing. I have a good friend who commutes to work in the morning and it takes him about 45 minutes to arrive to his destination. You know what he does for that 45 minutes- talks to God. He said Beau when i'm in my vehicle that is the only time that I have for myself. It's really the only time that I have peace. And you need it with all these crazy drivers today, he said.
I’m not asking you to do something that is going to distract you from driving. But since you’re already doing two things at one time (driving and cursing or driving and worrying- I'm going to suggest you use your time and find something that will add value to your life.
If you don't know where to start try getting a good audio book (i love listening to autobiographies). A good autobiography that I recently listened to was coming back strong- the Drew Brees story. Or maybe you’re in sales and want something to get you ready for your next call- so perhaps a sales book might do the trick. I had one friend who read or “listened” to the bible in 90 days right in her car everyday to work. She said Beau I used to commute to work and by the time I got there I wanted to leave and go home. But now when I start my day off this way I feel more energized and focused. I said well that is probably because you feel like you're adding value to your time. And your time is very precious. Once its gone thats it.
Today’s Action Step:
Pick one thing that you will do different on your commute to work. Perhaps you can use that time for quiet time. Or maybe you want to learn another language or study a subject that will enhance your career. Think about the things you could accomplish in the next year if you focused and contributed your time and energy to learning something new. So go now and remember to keep learning, growing and evolving into the person you were meant to be!