Combating Loneliness on Your Commute

After a couple of years of working from home or even hybrid working, returning to a regular commute can feel tiring or stressful.

The majority of people find the commute more stressful than the job they are travelling to and, with the average commute being around 54 minutes, it's a long time to mentally stress yourself out.

This is then made worse by sitting in unexpected traffic jams, the stress of being late to work in the first place or the urge to use the time to be more productive.

In the spirit of Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 and with the theme of this year being Loneliness, we have put together some ways that we hope will help combat the stress and the feeling of loneliness of a commute.

Road of the mind | Chapelhouse

1: Playlists and Podcasts

Choosing the right playlist can really help shift your mood in the right direction and get out of your own head for a while. An uplifting playlist of your favourite songs can get you pumped for the day ahead while a more classical option can aid in feelings of calm and peace.

If you prefer to make your commute feel more productive, Podcasts are the way to go! With a Podcast, you can learn something new about almost all topics while you travel.

2: Get Some Work Done

Though a work-life balance is massively important for your mental health, if you have the option and crave the feeling of productivity in the morning, many apps now sync to your car and with voice control, you can send emails, memos and set up tasks for when you arrive to work.  If you are travelling on public transport, it's a great time to set out your to-do list or do some research for your next big project.

3: Talk to People

We know that you spent the whole of your younger years being told not to talk to strangers but people are interesting. If you feel comfortable, spark up a conversation with your commuting buddies. You never know, it might be the start of a new friendship.

If you are unsure about talking to new people or you are sitting in your car alone, stay connected and maybe take the opportunity to call a friend or family member for a catch-up. Even just a brief call to arrange brunch or laugh about something that happened yesterday can be enough to lift your mood and set your day on the right track.

4: Carpool Your Commute

It may be a strange option at first but if you live close to someone that you work with, carpooling could be a great option. Not only will it give you someone to talk to each morning, providing a social aspect, but it also gives you the chance to be productive and collaborative before work. You can also share the driving responsibilities, reduce your running costs, saving you money in the long term and it's better for the environment because there is one less vehicle on the road. Win!

5: Try Slow Travel

It's a weird concept - leaving for work earlier than needed but hear us out. Leaving earlier to take the more scenic, less busy route will allow you to enjoy the drive more, brightening your mood. Leaving earlier could also open up the opportunity of spending time grabbing coffee with co-workers each morning or the time for a pre-meeting catch-up. Rather than rushing out the door each morning, take the opportunity to slow down and enjoy the time before work.

We hope that with the right tools in place, you can enjoy your commute to and from work and turn it into a journey that you look forward to every day and see the drive or ride as a chance to be social, productive and enthusiastic!