The INRIX 2018 Global Traffic Scoreboard Report was recently released and contained some interesting information and statistics regarding the amount of time that people spent in traffic worldwide. The report shows that while the average American spent 97 hours in traffic last year, Seattle drivers averaged 138 hours (adding up to nearly 6 days). If that number seems high, that’s because it is. Even New Yorkers spent less time in traffic last year, averaging 133 hours. Knowing that there are constantly traffic revisions and construction in Seattle, I don’t foresee much improvement in commute times for Seattleites in 2019; however, the following are ways that you can make the most out of a lengthy commute.

1. Be a part of the solution. By taking public transportation or organizing an office carpool, you can help to reduce the number of vehicles on the road (and cut down congestion as a result). Not only will you be helping to reduce traffic and air pollution, but you can also use your commute as a time to safely text or email while someone else is behind the wheel.

2. Use your time for personal or professional growth. Have you been wanting to learn how to jumpstart an area of your personal life or are seeking career advice? Maybe you would like to learn more about new technology in your field or you are interested in forming a new habit or routine. If you have a thirst for knowledge and growth, podcasts are the perfect way to use your time in traffic constructively.

3. Read a book. Ok so maybe you won’t be reading (unless someone else is driving), but you can listen to a book while you are commuting. Whether your goal is to learn or simply be entertained, this is one way to put your time to good use. You never know, a long commute may be the perfect opportunity to finally “read” a full book for your book club (not just skim the first chapter).

4. Set goals. On your way to work in the morning, set goals for the day and create a plan for how you are going to accomplish those goals. Being intentional with your time will help you to be more productive and successful in the workplace. You can also use your commute home to set goals for what you need to accomplish in your personal life. This way, you can use your commute to create a better work/life balance.

5. Rehearse: Do you have something that you need to rehearse or practice saying out loud? Sitting in traffic is the perfect time to practice broaching a difficult topic to your boss, a presentation, and even interview questions.

Don’t let all of those hours spent in traffic become wasted time. Use this list to jumpstart a constructive commuting habit!