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One of the parts of our brain is called the hippocampus. There are cells that are called place neurons — they are activated when we are in certain places in space. It is the hippocampus that is responsible for the so-called cognitive mapping of space. All people have individual characteristics of the body, and the hippocampus works differently for everyone. For some, it is very bad, this is called topographic cretinism. But that doesn't mean they can't learn to navigate the terrain. It is unlikely, of course, that they will do this as well as those who are naturally good at mapping, but it is quite possible to learn not to get lost in the city. If you have time, you can even try orienteering-this should help. Or just practice with maps and compasses more often. It's like a foreign language — some people have the ability to learn it, others don't. They will learn it more slowly, it will be harder for them, but in the end they will still learn it.
You can, and even turn the process into entertainment. Put some maps on your phone, such as Yandex maps, and try to link the area outside the window with the image on the screen on the way to(from) work(school) (don't forget to turn on GPS before driving). In Yandex. Maps, you can also mark road events, thereby helping road users. When and if the connection between the area and the map is sufficiently fixed in your head, you can do this for the new area (in fact, you can do it right away, no big deal).
One “but”: all this is good if you are a passenger, and not driving. You don't have to drive. The car navigator map will provide some help, but the road will still be more important and will take away almost all your attention.
I have a couple of friends who frankly agree with the term “Topographical cretinism”, but, as a rule, are perfectly oriented in the once visited space. Show them the way on the map – they won't understand, they won't immediately figure it out, but guide them once – they'll remember the way. I have never asked myself such a question, but I believe that it is quite possible to learn how to navigate the terrain. As for the word ” cartographic “in the name” malfunctions”, this will be slightly more difficult. This is usually corrected by taking basic geography courses (specifically map orientation) (1), orienteering lessons (2), or a regular walk around the city (3). The latter option is not only free, but also moderately interesting 🙂 Yes, it is not very suitable if the question arises about long hikes / trips, or an urgent trip to previously unknown places, but no one canceled the first two points 🙂
In general, as I understand it, this is not a diagnosis, which means that the solution to the problem depends only on the person who “suffers” from topographic cretinism.
Of course, you can. It's a skill just like any other. MRI scans of taxi drivers ' brains show that the area of the brain responsible for spatial orientation is much steeper in taxi drivers than in ordinary people. Therefore, topographical cretinism is not a sentence.