David Oldfield for Getty Images
David Oldfield for Getty Images

Lucky you if you can walk, bike or drive just a few minutes to work. But if you live far enough from the salon that your daily commute takes significant time, give yourself a break and figure out ways to use that time. No, not to work! Don’t dictate emails, rehash the rough patches of your day with clients or plan for the next day. Instead, use the commute to truly relax.


It’s possible! There are people who look forward to their drive to and from work as one of the highlights of their day. How can you be one of them? Attack the commute with all five senses:

  • Sight. If your car is your home away from home, turn it into pleasant surroundings. Keep it clean. Display a picture of people you love, or decorate the interior with your favorite colors. Now and then switch up your route to give yourself fresh views. In the fall, go slightly out of your way to drive down a street lined with trees showing off their colorful fall foliage. In the spring, drive by a field of flowers.
  • Hearing. This is the sense that carries the most potential for improving your commute. Use this time to reconnect with your favorite music or explore new musical artists you’ve been hearing about. Get “addicted” to a podcast—learn about fashion, celebrity news or any hobby—or keep a selection of audiobooks on your phone. Get Bluetooth so you also can use your phone as an actual phone—make chat dates with far-away friends to help you enjoy your time. 
  • Smell. Pick up an aromatherapy dispenser for the car, and fill your ride home with your favorite scent.
  • Touch. If a cold steering wheel seems uninviting, cover it with material ranging from soft leather or suede to satin, velvet or plush sheepskin. Look on etsy.com, or make your own!
  • Taste. Eating in the car isn’t the best habit, but if you save your favorite healthy snack for your ride home it will be something to look forward to. Bite into a juicy peach, drink a power smoothie or munch on nuts, carrots or cucumber.

Being alone with your thoughts can be relaxing, too. Just guide your thinking toward nice things happening in your life, and chase out any stressful thoughts. You can train yourself to have a relaxing time when it’s just you and your friendly car.


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