To combat the road rage that tends to come over me in those stand-still situations, I decided to be proactive and have a plan to make the time more enjoyable. Yes, I know some of these ideas are obvious but I think they are worth mentioning because they get me through it and they may help get you through it as well.
1// Read a Book
Or rather have someone read one to you. Audio books are awesome. If the book is good, it gives you a mental escape from the bumper to bumper traffic that is taking up your reality. I am currently listening to Love Does by Bob Goff. Not only is it entertaining but his stories are insanely inspiring, they make me want to make the most of every opportunity. Even traffic.
2// Learn a New Language
If you are like me and haven't yet mastered a second language, your commute may be the perfect time to start. I have a cheap $5 Learn to Speak Italian Audio set, I bought in a bargain bin, that literally makes me giggle like crazy. I can't say I've retained anything I've listened to yet, but it sure is entertaining. I am thinking about investing in a better set, something like this or this because I do really want to learn.
3// Have a Scavenger Hunt
We all drive the same roads every day, we know them so well that sometimes it feels like we just ended up at home. Auto pilot kicks in and we've made all the turns without even thinking. Because we are so use to our commute, there is a pretty good chance we are missing a lot of cool details along the way. One way to break up your trip and to appreciate your surroundings is to challenge yourself. Create a list of things you'd like to see and then while your driving keep an eye out. There is a good chance, you are passing by some beauty every day and you don't even know it. I plan on making me own list.
4// Rock Out
If you are going to be in the car for a long period of time, I say embrace the fact that you are essentially alone and rock out to your favorite tunes. Create a playlist of all the songs you love, but wouldn't necessarily sing along to with other people around. Then crank up the volume and sing it out. I do this A Lot. Sometimes, to oldies like Backstreet Boys and Hanson and sometimes I use the time to discover new music. Right now I've been listening to Brandon and Leah, Kim Walker-Smith and Skyler Smith and Sara Bareilles.
Let me know in the comments what you do on your commute, I'm always looking for good ideas.