I don't have a drivers licence. I don't even know how to drive. I have a PhD but I have no idea how to work a clutch. I'm lucky enough that my work place provides a bus service for its workers. Every morning I leave my house at 7:40AM, walk for 5 minutes and get on a bus for about 30 minutes to work. At the end of the day, which is 5PM, I get on said bus and return home. Having my time at work constrained in that way has been the single best thing for my productivity at work. And I didn't have to do anything to make it happen.

Being time constrained, knowing I have until 5PM to make progress, makes me take my time more seriously. I can't waste hours on checking YouTube, the news, or even email because I only have 7/8 hours to get stuff done. If it doesn't get done it'll have to wait until tomorrow. I've bolstered this hard line separation by not setting up my work email on my phone or VPN access on my laptop. I physically cannot do any work unless I am at work, and I only have 39 hours each week to get stuff done. [1]

As you might know, I've also adopted the habit of planning my entire day; every minute is spoken for. Ill go into more details about the daily plans at a later date, but suffice it to say that in order to make those 39 hours count, I have to plan ahead and make conscious and informed decisions about how I spend my time. The daily plan enables that.

The bus also has another great benefit, it helps me enjoy my time after work so much more. Creating this hard line of separation helps my mind enter home-mode. When I step on that bus I'm off the hook. Work is done and my afternoon begins. I don't take work home with me, psychologically or physically.

Finally, I'm not stressed out about the commute, nor does it become a negative topic of conversation at home or work. Instead it's a great pocket of time where I get to read, write, or listen to a podcast.

Being beholden to a bus schedule might sound limiting to some, but I have absolutely no doubt that it's been a very positive thing in my life, and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Thanks for reading.

Hope you're having a great one.

-- Jay Blanco

[1] : I realize that some people's heads just exploded. I understand that in some parts of the world, sensible work hours are not commonplace. If this is your situation, I am truly sorry.

Comment