How we walk

pedestrianHave you ever noticed how we cross the road early on our way to a place and cross it early in the other direction on our way back?

Why do we do this? Maybe a PhD student has spent years researching this — but it would probably take a year to find the relevant answer from her research. So I’ll give a guess. I think we like to get the hard part out of the way first and then enjoy the rest of the journey. I realize that is not true for all of us — and it is not true in every instance. But I think in this case it works.

Next time you walk somewhere, observe how you cross the road. Report your findings here, if you can remember to.

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4 Replies to “How we walk”

  1. Could it be because we’re trained from our first car ride to be on the right side of the road? Do they walk the opposite way in Britain?

    1. Good question! Though I lived in England for 3 years, I never noticed the walking behavior (or “behaviour” as it’s known as there). If we ever go back, I’ll have to remember to observe that.

  2. If you’re going to a destination to the right rather than the left, would you cross early or late? Might consider the question that way. I think we favor walking on the right, but I haven’t done a lot of walking in the past 15 years.

    Some of it has to do with the feeling of accomplishment: tangible progress right away. I used to have my kids move all the junk into a pile in the middle of the room, when I would help them clean up. That made the floor immediately cleaner, so the job seemed less overwhelming. Then we still had to sort the pile, but therre was tangible accomplishment already behind us.

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