Friday Forum – Pros of a Long Commute?

Welcome to the Friday Forum!

Every Friday, we take a question submitted by one of our readers and have our professionals field it and provide advice.  We then encourage you to comment below and give your personal take!

Here is This Week’s Question:

Leon asks:

“I was just offered a great job with an solid company but it is a 50 minute drive from my house.  I have never driven more than 30 minutes to work so I am trying to decide if it makes sense.  I don’t mind driving, but I have had a lot of friends and family remind me about the downsides of a long commute.  It is a tough decision because it is an awesome opportunity and I am trying to decide if the extra time in the car is worth it.  Are there any benefits to a long commute?”

Commute time is a huge factor when it comes to deciding on a new position.  With that being said, it is important to remember that it is only one piece of the puzzle.  There are many people in the work force that have a long commute and while some may hate it, others actually don’t mind it.  Sure, there are certain downsides to a long commute like expenses, traffic, and time, but there are also a few benefits.  Be sure to weigh and consider all factors of your job offer and don’t immediately decline solely on the location.  Other things like the job itself, compensation, growth potential, etc. may make the drive worth it.

A few benefits of a long commute:

Wake up

One of the greatest benefits of a long commute is that it allows you the opportunity to wake up in the morning and mentally prepare for your day.  By settling into a normal routine you will arrive at work focused and ready to go.

Clear your head

While the drive into work may give you the opportunity to get ready for the day, the drive home lets you decompress.  A lot of people feel that this may be the greatest benefit to a long commute.  If you have had a stressful day or a lot on your plate, it will give you some time to forget about it before you arrive at home.  This also helps with your home life as you are less likely to arrive upset or stressed after a long day.

Separate home from work

A long commute also does a nice job of helping you separate your work from your home life.  If you have a job that is close to home, it is more difficult to leave your work at the office at the end of the day.  Many folks find themselves never really unplugging and continuing to work even after they are at home.  Also if you live close, you are more likely to stay later, work longer hours, or even head back to the office after you have left.

Have some “you” time

A lot of folks love the fact that they have some “me” time that breaks up the day.  Many use this time to listen to podcasts, jam to some new tunes, and even catch up with family and friends on their hands free.  Some even choose to just enjoy the silence and clear their head.

Run errands

If you have a longer commute it means that you drive past many different places.  While this may sound silly, it is actually something that could help you in the long run.  A quick stop somewhere on your way home may help check things off of your to-do list.

Opportunity to explore new areas

Finally a longer commute gives you the opportunity to explore new areas.  It may take you through places you have never been and you may come across some pretty cool stuff.  You can even try new routes and see what you can find!

What are Your Thoughts? Comment Below!

Do you have a long commute? Do you think there are any benefits?

Dan Metz is the Director of Executive Search and Employee Development at the Resilience Group, LLC, and Co-Founder and Contributing Author for Need a New Gig.  Follow his blog for more great tips like this!

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