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Unless you’re one of the lucky few on board the International Space Station, some form of a commute to the place where you earn that sweet cheddar seems unavoidable. As grey and dull that sounds, these pockets of time present great opportunity. Try new things that expand your horizons as opposed to just scrolling your Facebook feed.

Read a book

I know right? So obvious, yet the last time I had a paperback in hand it was like carrying a silver cross among vampires. Starting your day by letting your brain create it’s own little universes without any visual aid is like taking a morning shower mentally. You’ll be refreshed and ready to go when you rock up to the office.

Creative commute

If possible, try altering your way to work to keep things fresh. Cycle instead of taking the bus, or even try running to work and marvel at all the little details you’d never would’ve caught from the train window. Check the area on Google maps and try a different coffee place on your way to work. The more varied your morning, the less you’ll feel like you’ve just woken up when someone asks you a complicated question about the quarterly earnings report at the 11AM meeting.

Train your brain

Phones are marvels of engineering, yet we basically restrict ourselves to browsing pictures of cute animals, badly lit food and people pretending to be yoga experts after their second class. You can use your phone to do some mental gymnastics (the good kind). Try playing some sudoku, the beautiful Monument Valley or install Lichess, the best chess app in existence if you fancy yourself to be the Magnus Carlsen type.

Recipe for success

They say don’t go shopping for food when you are hungry. Well there is no better time to browse mouthwatering Pinterest boards of sticky soy glazed garlic chicken than the wee hours of the morning as you commute to the office. Preping your own meal is a lot easier when you have the food you want figured out, so pick a food on your to work and grab the ingredients on your way home, thus bookending your day neatly (and tastily).

Feed your brain

If you’re driving to work, hope you’re not sitting in that car all by yourself. But enough about emissions shaming, listening to someone ramble about society and our place within it as opposed to the latest zero calorie radio hit song for the billionth time will make your red wave a much happier place. Take a look at our list of podcasts to get you started.

If you are really, really at a loss for stuff to do on your commute, you can also have a browse of our extended range of cards.