Do You Have The Place Gene?

Everybody does, says Bill Fulton. Here's how to hone yours—and talk to people who you think don't have it.

November 30, 2020, 10:00 AM PST

By William Fulton

Belden Place

Gary Stevens / Flickr

"Place" is one of the most common and ubiquitous of all human experiences. Yet most of us never think about it. Instead, we just drift from place to place every day without consciously processing the experience.

But some people are conscious about their place experience. They define their world by place. They process the place they are moving through and its components constantly. They tend to think in geographical terms — they remember who people are by remembering where they live and where they grew up. Those of us who function this way—who have what I call the "place gene"—are sometimes a little smug about it. We think that people with the place gene appreciate and know how to create great places, while everybody else just drives cluelessly around in placeless suburbia.

But maybe we’re all born with the place gene. And maybe we can all develop our sensitivity to place in way that helps us navigate the world and makes us more comfortable in it, no matter what our personal place preference is.

So here's how you can hone your place gene—and become more tolerant of those who hold different places values than you do.

Monday, November 23, 2020 in Bill Fulton via Medium


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