On that note, what makes a bad one?
Living in Los Angeles we as a population are obsessed with direction, location, and getting from A to B. Anyone can walk into a conversation of any context, ask how someone got to where they are now, and almost always be met with a detailed route, and duration (insert reference to The Californians.)
My work commute has changed and it’s allowed me some extra time to think and consider what it is I really want as far as travel from home to work.
Distance: distance has been a big priority when it comes to getting around town. If you followed the routes I take, they usually have the shortest distance in mind (regardless of elevation which has bitten me in the ass more than once.) Instead of seven miles, I’ve got a 30ish mile commute. There is no arguing this significant change, but instead of the knee-jerk reaction of, “omg, this is so far! This sucks! Blah blah blah” I want to explore what is so terrible about the increased distance. What would I / could I rather be doing instead?
Method of travel: When I realized my new work location I immediately made a point to avoid driving to and from work whenever possible. I have a high mileage vehicle and frankly don’t enjoy driving in all contexts. That being said, I have seen the light and have embraced the medium of public transportation. This allows most of the gripes that people have about commuting to be pushed to the side and be disregarded.
Timing: All types of travel require some type of timing and planning. We all set alarms, and have an absolute latest time we need to be out the door and on our own. Whether you’re on a bike, plane, train, or automobile, there must be some sense of timing to get to where you need to go. With that being said, switching from a car to a bus requires the same, if not less mental effort depending on the circumstance. My new routine is becoming more familiar and I don’t feel that I have to go out of my way moreso than I did when I drove to work.
Energy: This one is a no brainier. As long as you are where you need to be when public transport arrives, you spend much less energy getting where you need to go as opposed to driving. There is less focus required, and you are allowed to catch up on the sleep you might have lost getting up an extra 30-45 minutes to catch your ride.
Sure I might be going out of my way to avoid driving to work. But I don’t believe I am really losing much in the long run. To add to that, I’m convinced my commute does not suck. I can’t think of something I would rather be doing with the increased amount of time required to make it to work. Even if there is something more important I need to do, there are enough hours in the day to get most adult tasks finished. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Don’t ask me how much my commute sucks just because I’ve got more ground to cover. Get over it and get your priorities in order.
Until next time….