Walking Meditation

Summer's warmth and beauty is upon us!  This festive time of year is exciting and often packed with entertainment and social engagements.  Relaxation and time to unwind become increasingly important to balance the excitement and joy we feel.  Without this balance, burnout and loss of emotional control is inevitable.  A simple solution for preventing negative effects from all of this positive stress is walking mediation.  Take a 10 minute walk over a lunch break, before breakfast, or late in the evening with the intention of feeling your steps, unwinding your body, and focusing your mind on thoughts related to sensations you feel on your walk.

1. Get rooted.   Take a moment to stand in one place.  Feet shoulder width apart.  Imagine your heels and toes connecting to the earth below.  Roots are growing between your feet and the ground.  Breath deeply into your belly.  Slowly. Peacefully.  Open your eyes. See what is around you. Hear the landscape. Smell the air. Feel the wind. 
2. Move slowly.  Pick up your feet and step slowly.  Let your hips sway. Pay attention to tension you feel anywhere in your body.  Slow down and allow your natural movements to take over.  
3. Feel your feet.  As you peel one foot off the ground, feel the pressure shift across your foot.  Feel the ground beneath you as you set your foot back down.  Right to left with a slow steady step, feel the sensations in your feet as they navigate the earth.
4. Walk with your rhythm.  This slow pace with loose hips swaying and feet gripping and grabbing the earth with every step will create a rhythmic movement that is unique to you.  Tune into your body rhythm.  Stay loose.  Breath into it. Come back to your body when your mind gets distracted by thoughts or the surrounding environment.  Hear your steps walking in sync with a rhythmic walking beat.  
5. Go without arriving.  You are walking to feel.  There is no rush. No place to be. Be in your body in the moment.  You have a destination that you are guiding your body to.  The walk is not about getting from one place to another.  You are walking to make a deeper connection between your mind and body.  Connecting to the earth will ground your body and provide stability for your mind.  Enjoy the journey.