双语阅读 | 为什么通勤16分钟是通往幸福之路的关键?

双语阅读 | 为什么通勤16分钟是通往幸福之路的关键?
困难 1046

Why the key to happiness is a 16 minute commute?

Why the key to happiness is a 16-minute commute?



王淑怡 供稿


Many people look forward to a lengthy work commute as it provides them with an opportunity to awaken their senses before entering the office and starting their workday. Others, however, prefer commutes under half an hour in length, as long ones make them feel drained and exhausted before even stepping foot into their place of work.



It’s perhaps not surprising that our commutes make us miserable. The UK’s Office for National Statistics has found that “commuters have lower life satisfaction, a lower sense that their daily activities are worthwhile, lower levels of happiness and higher anxiety on average than non-commuters”. In fact, if your commute takes longer than an hour, feelings of happiness decrease with every successive minute of travel. If a lengthy commute makes us unhappy, then it should follow that a shorter commute improves our happiness levels.



What’s the ideal commute that is necessary to ensure work efficiency and general happiness? Prepare to be surprised. It turns out that the ideal commute is actually not no commute at all. A study of more than 1,000 workers in San Francisco found that their ideal one-way commute was 16 minutes. Fewer than two per cent of people wanted a commute time shorter than four minutes, while only 1.2 per cent wanted no commute time at all.



It seems that people do appreciate some separation between work and home – using the travel time as a psychological tool to decompress from the day. And it’s backed up by science. An increasing amount of research shows that ‘active commutes’, which involve walking or cycling, can make life better – even as important to wellbeing as a marriage or a pay rise.



If the ideal commute for most people is a 16-minute stroll each way, how should businesses respond? “Gone are the days of making employees spend unproductive time traveling to a central location and working to fixed hours that date back to Victorian times, says Richard Morris, UK CEO at Regus. “Businesses of every size investigating flexible work options that enable employees to work closer to home and to vary their hours to better suit their circumstances.”

如果大多数人理想的通勤时间是每天单程步行16分钟,那么企业对此如何回应呢?“自维多利亚时代以来,员工每天在路上花费一段毫无成果的时间前往中心区域并按照固定时间工作,这样的日子已经一去不复返了,”雷格斯英国首席执行官Richard Morris表示,“各种规模的企业研究可行的弹性工作制,使员工能够在离家较近的地方工作,并能改变自己的上班时间,以更好地适应的各自不同的生活状况。”


If, as the ancient Athenian historian Thucydides suggests, “The secret to happiness is freedom”, the opportunity to choose where to work and how to get there could make all the difference to weary commuters across the world.






1. drain v. 耗尽

2. commuter n. 通勤者;每日往返上班者

3. decompress v. 使减压;使解除压力

4. stroll n. 漫步;闲逛

5. unproductive adj. 非生产性的;徒劳的

6. weary adj. 疲倦的;厌烦的

7. Athenian adj. 雅典的;雅典人的



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  • 字数:436个
  • 易读度:困难
  • 来源:王淑怡 2021-05-10