Power Places

Everyone has a power place. A power place is a place where you get stuff done, where you are supremely productive, where the world seems safe, and it feels like you can’t fail.

My power place is bookstores. Any bookstore, really, as long as they have wifi and a coffee shop. Here are some qualities of good power places:

1) Memories. I don’t drink coffee, but I love the smell. My parents don’t drink coffee so my first associations with the smell were having important conversations with dates or friends and finishing that eight-page paper. I think that’s partly what goes into making a successful power place: it has memories that are productive. All of my substantial memories of books/coffee are of me being responsible, friendly, hard-working; in short, all of the things that I want to be.

2) Things you love. When I am in a place with books, I feel an immediate commune with the world. I love books. I love the written word. I love other people who love books. It’s easy for me to be in a good mood when I am around so many things that I love.

3) It’s yours. When I came to college for the first time, one of the first pieces of advice anyone gave me was that I needed to find my own special place to study. I didn’t understand at the time. There are plenty of places to study: study rooms, libraries, your room, etc. But that’s not what that advice is about. It’s about owning a place, feeling at home there, and having it feel special. It’s kind of like choosing a church. A lot of times, there really isn’t a correct answer. It’s about finding a place that speaks to you.

Where’s your power place?

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