The hubs recently started a new job with a schedule that coordinates with mine, except it starts 2 hours earlier because he has a 4 day work week. We thought he might be able to find a share-ride option for the mornings and then ride home with me in the afternoons, but there haven’t been any available spots on the vans that go to his shop. So I suggested an alternate arrangement – I’d come in earlier and drop him off before heading to my office for some quite personal time.
Although this requires getting up an hour and a half earlier than I normally would, which is a huge feat for a night owl like me, it’s working out pretty well. Having almost 2 hours of uninterrupted time to write (hence the increase in blog posts) or complete tasks each morning has been far more productive than working on the same things in the evenings at home. Plus, because I’ve already accomplished several tasks before starting my workday, I’m much less stressed throughout the day and can now relax when I get home in the evenings. I also feel more awake when the work day starts, which makes me more productive at work as well.
At first, it was difficult to resist going into ‘work’ mode when I arrive at the office. Because of that, I’ve set a strict rule of not logging into my work email or opening any work files until it’s time to start working. That way I’m not tempted to “just answer that quick email” which leads to another and another and so on.
Another bonus of my earlier arrival is avoiding the morning crowd on the highway. Before the new schedule I would typically arrive at work 30 minutes early because the traffic wasn’t as congested if I left home just a little earlier than I HAD to and it allowed flexibility if there was congestion. And since the hubs drives most mornings it gives me even more time to catch up on email or check things online with my phone. But mostly I enjoy having an extra two hours of time to chat with the hubs, even if it’s just talking through the day-to-day stuff.
Granted, I admit I’m still trying to get my internal clock adjusted and it is a struggle maintaining an appropriate bedtime, but overall I’m really happy I made the change. In fact, when circumstances don’t allow us to drive together I still maintain the schedule and work on things at home instead. You might recall I made a similar schedule change about this time last year and it worked for a while, but without the added motivation of carpooling and saving money it didn’t last more than a month or two. This time I think I’ll stick with it because it works well for both of us, I’m more relaxed overall and my thrifty side is all about spending less on gas. And that’s worth overcoming the desire to ignore the alarm and snuggle back under the covers.