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Traffic and Next Actions

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  • Traffic and Next Actions

    I had a "slap me around the face with a wet kipper" A-Ha moment on the way to work this morning.

    I live an hour away from work and because of that a large part of my journey is on the motorway. I leave home around 6:00am to get to the office for 7:00am and because of this I'm becoming less part of traffic jams. Sure it happens but I just find that it happens less.

    Anyway, I saw those dredded flashing motorway signs this morning telling everyone to slow down and eventually traffic came to a halt.

    Now pre-GTD (and I'm still pretty new to it) I would have become more and more stressed. I would have switched on the radio in order to get more information and I would begin planning my exit route if and when I could finally make it to the next exit.

    This morning I didn't do that. To my surprise I found myself perfectly calm and even happy. I remember even asking myself "er hello Jason, why aren't you stressed?" and I replied with "because I'm working through a next action". See, I was listening to my iPod and on it were all the GTD connect podcasts that I'd downloaded - literally hours and hours of them.

    So not only did I remain totally calm, which has to be good for keeping those grey hairs at bay, I was being productive (Listen to GTD Podcasts on the way to/from work). And not only that I arrived in the office completely calm instead of ranting and raving about the traffic.

    If you travel a lot I highly recommed getting these onto an MP3 player. When you find yourself stuck in traffic, and lets be honest here it will happen, you can still do something productive and feel good about it.


  • #2
    Use MP3 player or MP3 car radio.

    I second that. I am listening to various podcasts during my 45 minute commute (I use iPod Shuffle first generation). I am even happy if I get stuck in the traffic jam when the podcast is interesting.


    • #3
      Absolutely -- listening to audiobooks has changed my bad driving habits. I no longer feel the need to use the cell phone while I'm driving because I'm listening to my iPod. And while listening to podcasts and useful books is part of my routine, just having a good story to listen to is such a relief from stress of traffic and life.

      If you haven't already, check out They have everything from business/self-improvement (including GTD, etc.) to classic literature to best sellers. Oh, and newspapers like the Wall Street Journal, etc.


      • #4
        While I don't personally commute regularly, I completely agree. My perspective on this shifted when I read Steve Leveen's The Little Guide to Your Well-Read Life, talked about elsewhere in this forum. Highly recommended!