Recent Buying Selling Lifestyle Investor Tenants
Recent Buying Selling Lifestyle Investor Tenants

The impact of a lengthy commute

Written by Ashley Blake
When you’re fantasising about moving into your new home or imagining chatting to new-found friends in your new cubicle or office, it’s not uncommon to overlook the pros and cons of the commute. However travelling to and from work is an important part of our day that can contribute or contaminate to our overall well-being.

Happiness and well-being levels are usually higher in people who don’t feel that negative feelings dominate the annoying and irritating daily hassles we all have to deal with, including commuting.

On the down side, studies show that one third of people who commute for more than 90 minutes a day report more back and neck pain, and obesity, as well as less enjoyment, and more fatigue and worry.

Interestingly, female commuters who feel low levels of self-control in their lives reports the greatest stress levels compared to their male counterparts.

However, a long commute can also bring positive benefits including providing a buffer between personal and professional domains.

For those taking public transport on their long commute, there is the option to read the paper, check emails, prepare for their day, or tie up loose ends which can often reduce stress levels before arriving at work or coming home.

When the commute is behind the wheel of a car, it’s important to acknowledge the choices you are making to either catch up on the news, sing-a-long to the radio, cherish self-time, or to heave with road rage and lament the commute.

The real issue here boils down to what drives you (excuse the pun!) People tend to tolerate a longer commute time if they feel they are being compensated intrinsically or financially in their chosen job, or housing and living environment.

Sometimes it’s not the commute itself that contributes to or contaminates one’s well-being, it’s what that commute represents.

We all have values and beliefs by which we live, and being aware of these helps us to understand and accept the choices we make, and the resulting emotions we feel. In other words, for those of us who value collegiate support, we may be willing to take on a lengthy commute to spend time in a work environment with people we enjoy spending time with.

However if we value quiet time and solitude more, then the lengthy commute to a busy office won’t feel worthwhile.

Sometimes it’s not the commute itself that contributes to or contaminates one’s well being, it’s what that commute represents.

Ask yourself what are the values, beliefs, and needs you hold most dear in your personal and professional life? Does a long commute support these or hinder them?

Only through this lens can you truly begin to understand the impact the long road between home and work can have for you.


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