Photo by Travis Ruse
With all of the challenges in the job market, sometimes you need to make compromises. It could be that where you live right now doesn’t have much in the way of well-paid jobs. Or perhaps you’re qualified for a job that isn’t widely available, and you need to look further for it. In either case, the truth is that more and more of us are having to commute to work. In Texas, as big as it is, that can mean long journeys. In sweltering heat.
Studies have shown that people who have to commute to work are, on balance, less happy than people who don’t. And it makes sense. If you can just hop in your car and be at work in 15 to 30 minutes, that means more time in bed, quality time with your family and a better diet. Having to be up and out the door while it’s still pitch black doesn’t set anyone off to the best start.
But sometimes if you want the best job you have to be ready to travel, at least until it’s practical to move or a similar position opens up nearer to you. In cases such as this, your commute should be as easy as possible. Windows down or up, it can get pretty hot on a cross-Texas commute. As such, it’s handy to think about ways to make the commute from hell a little more heavenly.
1. Flexible Working Schedules
Not every employer is going to offer it, but if you have the chance to arrange it then sometimes a different schedule can help. If there is some work you can do from home, then you can spend more time with your family. For the time that you do have to spend in the office, you’ll be much more serene.
2. Don’t Drive, Leave It To Someone Else
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Driving for long periods of time is not a great way to get ready for work. The traffic is out of your control, and you can spend forever looking for a parking space. However, public transport links are improving all the time. If your job involves traveling from Dallas to Houston, it can be a lot better to avail of these improvements. Listen to some music, take your laptop and watch a film. Arrive in a good mood.
3. Stay Over From Time To Time
It may sound counter-intuitive for someone who wants to spend more time at home. However, sometimes there are advantages to staying overnight in a hotel in the city or town you’re working in. If it means you can get to the office earlier and be done sooner, then you can get home at a civilized hour, eat dinner with your family and be more relaxed. Showing this ability to be flexible will also encourage your employer to be more flexible with you.
Chances are, you’d still rather have a more convenient job. And it is certainly important to bear in mind that your physical health and emotional well-being outrank everything else. However, these are ways to make commuting less stressful, not remove it entirely. And for as long as you’ve got to do it, you may as well do it in a more pleasant way.