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  • Susanne

Walking is good for the mind (and soul)

I don't know about you, but when I go for a walk (however short or long) I feel better afterwards. Admittedly, sometimes it takes quite a bit of determination to actually go out for the walk, but once I'm in motion, I enjoy it immensely.

There are different reasons why I go for a walk: to clear my head, to think something through, to contemplate a dilemma/a situation that's on my mind, to exercise, to not think, to enjoy the company of friends/a walking group, to discover a new bit of the area I live in, to feel closer to nature, ...

I find walking is great in different ways than other hobbies for a variety of reasons:

  • looking at beautiful scenery certainly takes my mind of things if I want to get some distance to issues that are bothering me;

  • the walking forward motion seems to help me with considering things clearly and in a structured and pragmatic way and possibly a bit more positively and amenably than if I sat in a chair at home;

  • being surrounded by trees, grass, the ocean, butterflies, birds, sheep, wildlife in general seems to put things into perspective and enables me to laugh about things that normally drive me insane, inlcuding myself.

Of course, I prefer to walk in sunny weather (though not too hot, please), but I've found that walking on breezy/windy or even rainy days also has its perks - by the time I get back home/to the nearest cafe, I'm REALLY glad to get a cup of tea and maybe even treat myself with a snack and afterwards the relaxation effect is amazing.

Surrounding yourself with beauty for me means walking far away from everyday stuff like cars, roads, people, built-up areas, etc. The calm invariably comes over me after a few hundred meters and I neither feel the urge to talk or think, at least for a brief time - yep, that can happen, though my family and friends probably have a hard time imagining that ;)

Taking note of the things on my walk, simple beauty, thinking uncomplicated thoughts, appreciating what Mother Nature does all around us whatever we do to her, enjoying a view, smelling a flower, watching butterflies dance, birds swoop through the skies, all this is something they call 'mindfulness' in the corporate business world I've now left behind.

Whilst I have never been one for following fads in any are of my life, I believe that there is something about decelerating our very busy/hectic lives that walking can bring. Our legs aren't there to be stuffed under a table all day, and the speed we walk at allows our mind and soul to travel along with our body.

Circular walks or at least not going back and fro on the same route is quite important for any walk I undertake as I truly don't like the feeling of going back the same way I came - saying something about me? You bet - I prefer to see different things and walking back the same way I came feels like nothing has progressed...

These pictures have been taken over the past 3 months while exploring my new home and the stunning magnificent walks North Wales offers. Some I did on my own, others with people who know the area.

Maybe you need a friend to get you to start walking? Or a dog who must be taken out at least twice a day? It's different for everyone, but I love all sorts of walks and I'm just thinking where to go next as it's another sunny day today ...

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