It’s easy to take where you live for granted and to wonder (or maybe even hope) if you might be happier living somewhere else. You might say to yourself, I’d be much more relaxed and healthy if I lived by the beach. My kids would be more active if they had a yard. I would be far more cultured if I lived in a big city, and so on. We’ve all been caught saying something similar at one point or another.
But is the grass really always greener when it comes to choosing a home base or are you just missing out on all the perks your home city has to offer? As author Peter Kageyama points out in For the Love of Cities, “When we love our city, as when we love another person, we will go to extraordinary lengths for them…When we have an emotional connection to our place, we are less likely to leave it and far more likely to champion and defend it in the face of criticism. We will fight for it.” So instead of considering a change of location, maybe it’s time for a change in attitude. It’s time to appreciate and discover all the gems in your home city and learn to love where you live. Here are 12 ways to rediscover the best your home city has to offer and to gain a little pride and passion for your town.
1. Play tourist.
Things look different through the lens of a tourist—and not just because people on vacation tend to be in better moods. When we travel to new cities, we try new things and we seek out new places and experiences. Whether your city has national monuments, natural wonders, adventure trails, historic buildings or quaint neighborhoods to explore, pretend you’re just a visitor. Pick up a tourist map or travel guide, pick a few spots you’ve never been to and get going.