Note from the author: There are many ways to practice Mindfulness, adopting different postures – walking is one of them. The author recognises not everyone may be able to take part in the activity in the way it’s described, but may find other insights on this website helpful, like this one. There will also be an expanded article on Mindful Walking soon.
Reflections for the Week: (Mindful) Walking
Generally speaking, we can spend a lot of our time on our feet.
We rush to and from all the places we have to be. (Even our minds “run away” from us).
We pace when we’re anxious.
We spend ages standing in queues waiting for something to happen.
We may notice the difference when we take the weight of our feet, but we rarely pay attention to the experience of just standing or walking.
When I first introduce the topic of Mindful Walking in my classes, there’s a mixed reaction at first, especially when I tell them Mindful Walking is best done slowly.
In the 21st Century, there aren’t many things we do slowly at all. Nevertheless, the benefits of Mindful Walking are well documented.
Here’s something you can try:
Identify or mark out a distance either at home, or perhaps your garden, where you can walk 10 paces, forward and back. (These are just ordinary steps, they don’t have to be exaggerated or too small). Spend a few moments noticing the experience of standing. Notice the intention to walk the 10 paces. Then begin to walk. Each footstep is deliberate and intentional. Notice how your foot feels connecting with the floor. With every step see how it feels to lift and place it, aware of each footstep as you walk. When you reach the end of the 10 paces, stop. Stand for a moment noticing the experience of standing. Notice the intention to turn, then turn and begin the process again. You may wish to set yourself a timer, but doing this for even just a minute a day can be relaxing and beneficial.
For expanded insights straight to your inbox, click here. You’ll receive a weekly email full of tips and insights, as well as free access to resources including the eGuide “Relaxation for Busy People“.
Copyright Delphi Ellis