The "Third Place" is a term named by the sociologist Ray Oldenburg in 1989.
We spend most of our lives at Home (First Place) or Work (Second Place). The Third place is somewhere you feel you belong that is outside of your home or workspace.
With the current Pandemic the need for a Third place is now more important than ever. The Third Place is usually in a public setting which is a place for informal social gatherings. A prime example (cough) a Coffee Shop.
The Third Place, a place where you can smell the coffee, socialise and relax.
The Third Place is somewhere you can come and go as you please. Somewhere you will be greeted with a warm welcome each and every time regardless of your regularity.
The Third Place does not discriminate. It should welcome anyone and everyone. It doesn't matter where you are from, what you do for a living or what interests you have. Everyone is welcome all the same.
Conversation is encouraged. It is a social environment where people meet friends or chat to the barista. Anything from Coffee, exercise or the universe. Whatever is on your mind you are free to speak without judgement.
The Third Place is somewhere you can easily commute to, by either walking or a short drive. There are regulars you visit often, they are what makes the place what it is. It should also be very homely, you should feel as if you are in your friends living room or kitchen.
The Third place is somewhere that gets you out of the house. It might be the only reason to leave your home with all the responsibilities and technology in the home it is becoming increasingly easy to just stay home. It is a place where you can switch off and relax. Humans will always need Human Connection. It doesn't matter how much technology improves it can not substitue physical presence.
It is a very lonely time to be a human. Over a third of britons are lonely. Loneliness has to been linked to increased ageing, a weakened immune system and overall reduction in lifespan. If you research blue zones (areas where there are a large proportion of healthy centarians) they rank a solid social community as one of the major factors.
So to conclude. In my humble opinion it is one of the most important aspects in todays society. As soon as you enter the senses are alive from the smell the warm welcome and friendly atmosphere. Its a place you can let your guard down, relax and feel apart of something bigger than yourself.
Drink Coffee, Seek Adventure, Enjoy Life