How I Use My Spare Time Commuting to Be More Productive!

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It’s AMAZING what you can do in that time!

I’ve just realised that I talk a lot in my articles about commuting by train, especially when I talk about productivity.

I mean, there’s a lot to talk about, especially from the productivity and content creation side of things.

To set the theme, I travel to the office at least twice a week by train. The train trip takes around an hour each way and if I take the train with a change, it takes around 1 hour and 30 minutes each way.

That gives me around 2 hours per day for doing something productive that does add up. I mean on a normal week I get over 4 hours of time I can use to do something productive. This is the time that I would usually spend looking out of the window and listening to music.

If I have to come in more than twice per week, which I often do, that gives me even more time, especially when I’m travelling to an office that is further away from my usual office.

But without any further ado, here’s how I spend my time commuting to work by train…

1. Writing blog posts

The primary thing I tend to do when I’m working on the train is write blog posts.

I use an app called Ulysses on my iPad, which is my favourite app for writing. The main reason I choose to use Ulysses is that I can easily write my full blog post in the app, use the built-in proofreader and then publish it to my blog directly from the app.

Not only does this help me save time, but it also provides me with an app I genuinely enjoy writing with, both on my MacBook and iPad.

I tend to primarily travel with my iPad Pro, which happens to be a 2020 11-inch iPad Pro, as well as a HOU keyboard case which I’ve had ever since I purchased the iPad a few years ago. The case features a comfortable keyboard as well as a smooth trackpad that supports gesture navigation.

I think it’s a great budget case considering the price, that is why I am leaving my Amazon affiliate link.

2. Catching up with emails, comments, and messages

There are times when I’m extremely busy throughout the week and I don’t get a chance to go through my emails, comments, and messages.

That is why sometimes, I schedule time during these train journeys to do exactly that.

However, in most cases, I tend to do that while waiting for the train on my phone.

When it comes to emails, I use an app called Spark which has been extremely helpful in helping me manage my emails, especially since it helps me filter out all the noise and achieve Inbox Zero faster.

Outside the 1-hour train ride, I tend to have anywhere between 15 minutes to around 25 or even 30 minutes to wait for the train. It all depends on the mode of transport I take to get to the train station.

If I walk, I tend to have less time, but if I catch a bus or rent an e-scooter, I tend to have more.

That time allows me to do the small things like catch up with emails, comments, and messages or catch up with social media.

Doing it this way allows me to concentrate on bigger tasks on the train, such as writing blog posts or editing videos for my YouTube channel.

3. Planning and editing videos

The other thing I tend to do is plan and edit my videos for YouTube.

What many people may not realise is that sometimes it takes a huge amount of time to create videos.

I mean you have to plan it, write a script for it, record footage for it (both A-Roll and B-Roll) and you have to edit it.

Those 4 hours or more I spend on the train are extremely beneficial for editing videos.

When editing videos on my iPad, I tend to use two apps, depending on how advanced the video is. I primarily use iMovie, which is great for those smaller videos. But for the more advanced ones, I tend to use LumaFusion.

In terms of storage, I tend to store my footage and anything I Plan to use in the video on a Samsung T5 portable Solid-State Drive, which comes in incredibly handy!

4. Learning and developing new skills

Another thing that I use my time for when on the train is learning and developing skills.

I’m currently incredibly interested in learning about the cloud, as I think it will be incredibly beneficial to me in my career in IT.

To help me out, I tend to do online courses as well as practice tests when on the train.

I use a handful of resources for this including the free resources available online as well as courses on Udemy and Tutorial Dojo.

I also tend to use YouTube for learning and developing skills, especially when it comes to productivity and learning to repair things.

5. Listening to audiobooks

Last but not least, I tend to use my time to listen to audiobooks.

I’m a massive fan of Audible, I would even go as far as saying that it changed my life!

The main reason for that is that Audible and audiobooks in general allow me to go through countless amounts of books without having to sit down and dedicate my time to reading, which can be a hard task to achieve.

I tend to listen to audiobooks when I walk to the train station, while I’m waiting for the train and if I plan to have a relaxing train journey without doing any work.

Not only does this help me learn new skills, but it also helps me to relax before a busy day at work. I’m not sure what it is, but sometimes listening to audiobooks has a positive impact on the rest of my day.

Final Thoughts

These are the primary things I tend to do while commuting to work by train.

As a part-time content creator with a full-time 9-to-5 job, I find that those extra hours I have in the day which I would usually spend wasting are a great help for learning new things and creating content.

They help me concentrate on other tasks at home and spend more time with my family, which is also an important part of life.

I think that it just goes to show that you can achieve so much if you learn to make the most out of your time and plan your week.

Speaking of which, I tend to plan my week every Sunday evening. That plan includes the things I plan to do during my morning and evening commute.

By writing this article, I hope that I am able to inspire more people to become productive in what I’m going to call wasting time.

With this term, I mean any time that you would typically spend being unproductive. For example, looking out of the window and listening to music during your commute to and from work or shopping at your local supermarket while listening to music on your headphones.

Disclaimer: This article contains affiliate links.