U.S. journalist Margaret Fuller once said that “a house is no home unless it includes food and fire for the mind as well as the body.” In some ways, the quote is even more poignant today than when it was written (19th Century.), As many societies continue to grasp the shifts and changes of todays world, we risk losing sight of the true importance of “place” in our lives.

A place is, first and foremost, a tangible thing. It’s where we choose to live. The concept of place, however, does not just encompass our physical house or home; it refers to our entire environment – our friends, family, community, climate and even politics. In other words, our vision of place dictates both where and how we live.

It’s also a mindset, as finding contentment and satisfaction in our chosen place is a matter of perspective. For example, one can live in a fashionable, sprawling mansion with a beautiful family in an idyllic location, and still be deeply unfulfilled. And the opposite can be true, in that someone with few material possessions and modest social status can lead a joyful and contented existence.

We’ve learned three big lessons about relationships. The first is that social connections are really good for us, and that loneliness kills. It turns out that people who are more socially connected to family, to friends, to community, are happier, they’re physically healthier, and they live longer than people who are less well connected.

Thus, the environmental factors included in our “place” play a crucial function in how we perceive our lives, especially when it comes to safety, comfort and stress. Think back to when you were a child; isn’t it incredible how well you can remember certain parts of your childhood home, and the powerful feelings those memories re-awaken? As we move through the different stages of life, our place becomes a buoy in a sea of constant change. If we are not comfortable with our physical place or the environment in which that place exists, we lose an important life anchor point.

So take the time, find your place both physical and mental. Ground yourself in both and with time you will find that your life is more accepting, that you personally remained anchored like a buoy in the ocean, but able to bob, float and handle the seas of change in ways that are will become more manful with each passing – Find your place.

Peace and Love, Jim

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