Date Published 20 October 2015
Everybody knows that rush hour is the worst hour of the day. No matter what gets thrown at you during the day — endless meetings, an angry boss, a collapsed contract deal — the way to and from work will top it. Public space invasion, bad breath, drum and bass music leaking from the guy's cheap earphones standing next to you: rush hour has it all. But fear not! Here are five tips on how to improve your commute, making your day that little bit less stressful.
5) Break Etiquette
This one is for the rebels out there. Do something that breaks you off from civilisation. Try standing on the opposite escalator for a few seconds, or make awkward eye contact with somebody (you could even smile!). You might turn yourself into a magnet for frowners but who cares? Doing this will make your commute a little more entertaining!
Obviously this one only works if you work locally, unless you particularly fancy cycling 50km to and from work every day. Opting to cycle means you avoid the Underground altogether, which means you'll save yourself the twice daily armpit-to-the-face routine. Much of London is flat, which means you won't be out of breath either.
If the unthinkable happens and your phone runs out of battery, or there's no Metro nearby, then use your imagination. Start to plan your day in your head. Outline what you need to get done, remind yourself who you're going to be in a meeting with, or simply think of something kind you can do for your co-workers. Similarly, if you're on your way home, think what you'll have for dinner, what you'll watch on tele, or where you'll go for your evening run.
2) Be Competitive
We all enjoy a bit of a contest, some more than others, so why not spice up rush hour with your very own challenge? Trying to shave time off your journey each day can become a bit of an obsession. Look for shortcuts, alternative trains, even buses, that can get you home quicker; you'll be surprised at just how much quicker your journey will feel!
1) Read Your Stops Backwards
Trust me on this one. Work out what language the word would belong to and practice its pronunciation, then give it a definition. For example, Motspur Park becomes Krap Rupstom, a mash-up of Polish and German. Do you throw an umlaut over the ‘o' or an accent over the ‘a'? Is it a park in Warsaw? Or a brand of German sausage? It's entirely up to you. Doing this for every station you pass will turn your tiresome journey into a multi-lingual (kind of) educational blast.