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You Don’t Need To Pay A 30-Year Home Mortgage. You Need A Third Place To Feel Rested.

You Don’t Need To Pay A 30-Year Home Mortgage. You Need A Third Place To Feel Rested.

What’s better in life to have such a cozy home and office? Just a glance at the picture already makes you feel good, right?

    Most of us spend over 80% of our time at home and in the office. It seems the environments of these two places largely affect our happiness and mental health.

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    But what if I told you actually you don’t need to spend a large sum of money for an ambient flat or hop from job to job for a pleasant workplace?

    Then you may ask “What other place do I need instead?”

    You need a third place. Having a balanced life is as simple as that!

    Have you ever wondered why you felt relaxed or uplifted when you’re in cafes, bars or recreation centers? These are the examples of third places suggested by Ray Oldenburg, an American urban sociologist, in his book The Great Place.[1]

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    While the home and the workplace are defined by Oldenburg as the first place and the second place, the third place means the public area which allows us to gather and have social interactions with others.

    When Oldenburg introduced this concept in 1989, he only focused on exploring how the third place helps bring a community together. But a recent study conducted by Dr. Adam Fraser and Deakin University has found that people who visit their third places often have better work-life balance than those who confine their lives to their homes and their workplace.[2]

    The reason for this is that they do not only pack their daily schedules with obligations from family and work, but know how to appreciate the little moments in life. In other words, they master the art of living in the present.

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    The third place makes you mentally stronger and more productive

    What’s more surprising is that the study also found that people with their own third places are more resilient and better at dealing with difficult times. Spending time in coffee shops or bars helps them shake off the negative emotions coming from other aspects of their lives.[3]

    Even if you’re not the ones who like socialising with strangers, finding your third place still benefit you a lot. Research has shown that everything in coffee shops – the noise, the lighting and the dynamics – creates a favorable environment to boost your creativity and concentration level! That’s why you may find you have more ideas and work faster when you go there alone.[4]

    How to find you own third place when there are so many options

    If you have no idea of how to find your own third place, you can make use of this 3Rs rule to find a suitable one. That’s great if you’ve already had one! But you can still check to see if your third place is good enough or not:

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    Reflect

    Traversing your home and your office every day can be a draining experience. Sometimes, you just wish to have a space to reflect on what you do for a whole day. An ideal third place should enable your mind to get into the tranquil and focused mode so you can think more deeply.

    Rest

    Your body will send the signals when you’re in your ideal third place. Say, your mind and your muscles will be in their most relaxing state. Watching a movie at the theatre, taking a walk in nature, or listening to your favourite songs in your car are all good options. Don’t limit your third place to the definition set by Oldenburg, Time has changed and so the definition should change as well. Finding a place that you feel comfortable when being alone is necessary for you to take a rest from your hectic life.

    Reset

    Finally, an ideal third place does not only make you feel relaxed but also energized. It should give you some stimulation so your life has more colors! For example, I usually go to the restaurant where my favourite band performs every Friday after work. Enjoying the delicious foods and the band show there refreshes my mind and gives me more energy for the challenges ahead. This can hardly be gained at home or at work.

    Tie your shoelaces and look for your third place now. You’ll find that life doesn’t need to be routinised!

    Reference

    More by this author

    Ricky Tang

    Editor. Movie Lover. Amateur Singer.

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    Last Updated on December 2, 2019

    10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

    10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

    Plato knew that the body and mind are intimately linked. And in the late 1800s, the Mayo brothers, famous physicians, estimated that over half of all hospital beds are filled with people suffering from frustration, anxiety, worry and despair. Causes of worry are everywhere, in our relationships and our jobs, so it’s key we find ways to take charge of the stress.

    In his classic book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie offers tools to ditch excessive worrying that help you make a worry-free environment for your private and professional life.

    These are the top 10 tips to grab worry by the horns and wrestle it to the ground:

    1. Make Your Decision and Never Look Back

    Have you ever made a decision in life only to second-guess it afterwards? Of course you have! It’s hard not to wonder whether you’ve done the right thing and whether there might still be time to take another path.

    But keep this in mind: you’ve already made your decision, so act decisively on it and dismiss all your anxiety about it.

    Don’t stop to hesitate, to reconsider, or to retrace your steps. Once you’ve chosen a course of action, stick to it and never waver.

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    2. Live for Today, Package Things up in “Day-Tight Compartments”

    You know that feeling: tossing, turning and worrying over something that happened or something that might, well into the wee hours. To avoid this pointless worrying, you need “day-tight compartments”. Much as a ship has different watertight compartments, your own “day-tight” ones are a way to limit your attention to the present day.

    The rule is simple: whatever happened in the past or might happen in the future must not intrude upon today. Everything else has to wait its turn for tomorrow’s box or stay stuck in the past.

    3. Embrace the Worst-Case Scenario and Strategize to Offset It

    If you’re worried about something, ask yourself: “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Could you lose your job? Be jailed? Get killed?

    Whatever the “worst” might be, it’s probably not so world-ending. You could probably even bounce back from it!

    If, for example, you lose your job, you could always find another. Once you accept the worst-case scenario and get thinking about contingency plans, you’ll feel calmer.

    4. Put a Lid on Your Worrying

    Sometimes we stress endlessly about negative experiences when just walking away from them would serve us far better.

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    To make squashing that worry easier, try this strategy, straight from stock traders: it’s called the “stop-loss” order, where shares are bought at a certain price, and then their price development is observed. If things go badly and the share price hits a certain point, they are sold off immediately. This stops the loss from increasing further.

    In the same manner, you can put a stop-loss order on things that cause you stress and grief.

    5. Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Happiness, That Is

    We can’t directly influence how we feel, but we can nudge ourselves to change through how we think and act.

    If you’re feeling sad or low, slap a big grin on your face and whistle a chipper tune. You’ll find it impossible to be blue when acting cheerful. But you don’t necessarily need to act outwardly happy; you can simply think happier thoughts instead.

    Marcus Aurelius summed it up aptly:

    “Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

    6. Give for the Joy of Giving

    When we perform acts of kindness, we often do so with the expectation of gratitude. But harboring such expectations will probably leave you disappointed.

    One person well aware of this fact was the lawyer Samuel Leibowitz. Over the course of his career, Leibowitz saved 78 people from going to the electric chair. Guess how many thanked him? None.

    So stop expecting gratitude when you’re kind to someone. Instead, take joy from the act yourself.

    7. Dump Envy – Enjoy Being Uniquely You

    Your genes are completely unique. Even if someone had the same parents as you, the likelihood of someone identical to you being born is just one in 300,000 billion.

    Despite this amazing fact, many of us long to be someone else, thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. But living your life this way is pointless. Embrace your uniqueness and get comfortable with who you really are: How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

    8. Haters Will Hate — It Just Means You’re Doing It Right

    When you’re criticized, it often means you’re accomplishing something noteworthy. In fact, let’s take it a step further and consider this: the more you’re criticized, the more influential and important a person you likely are.

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    So the next time somebody talks you down, don’t let it get to you. Take it as a compliment!

    9. Chill Out! Learn to Rest Before You Get Tired

    Scientists agree that emotions are the most common cause of fatigue. And it works the other way around, too: fatigue produces more worries and negative emotions.

    It should be clear, therefore, that you’ve got to relax regularly before you feel tired. Otherwise, worries and fatigue will accumulate on top of each other.

    It’s impossible to worry when you are relaxed, and regular rest helps you maintain your ability to work effectively.

    10. Get Organized and Enjoy Your Work

    There are few greater sources of misery in life than having to work, day in, day out, in a job you despise. It would make sense then that you shouldn’t pick a job you hate, or even just dislike doing.

    But say you already have a job. How can you make it more enjoyable and worry-free? One way is to stay organized: a desk full of unanswered mails and memos is sure to breed worries.

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    Better yet, rethink about the job you’re doing: What to Do When You Hate Your Job but Want a Successful Career

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    Featured photo credit: Tyler Nix via unsplash.com

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