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Practice Mindfulness: Take a Walk and Ease Your Mind in 6 Steps

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Walking has various mental, emotional, and physical benefits in life. Courtney E. Ackerman, author of 5-Minute Bliss, shares how taking a quick walk can help you practice mindfulness and ease your mind. 

Everyone knows that taking a walk is good for your health, but you can also use a simple walk to boost your mood and improve your mental health! Take 5 minutes to go on a short walk. You only have 5 minutes, so don’t worry about planning where to go; just take a stroll around your block or up and down your street. While you walk, challenge yourself to stay mindful of your surroundings. Look around you instead of keeping your gaze fixed straight ahead. Keep your mind open and observant of everything going on—what you pass, what you see, what you hear, what you feel, and the thoughts that pop in and out of your head. Make sure your breath is coming in and out at an even, measured pace and that you are mindful of each step you take. For example:

#1. Begin your walk at a natural pace.

While staying aware of your surroundings for safety’s sake, try to focus your attention on the sensation of walking. Notice the movement of your feet, the shifting of your body weight, and your breath as it leaves your body.

#2. Next, for a few minutes, pay attention to the sounds you hear.

Don’t try to identify the sounds; just notice them.

#3. Then focus on your sense of smell.

What scents do you notice on your walk?

#4. Now focus on what you can see.

Notice the colors, shapes, and objects all round you.

#5. As your walk comes to an end, focus on the sensation of walking again.

Feel your feet touching the ground; feel the vibration in your legs.

#6. Most important of all: remember to enjoy your mindful walk and all the fresh air!

Get more tips to improve your life and fitness in 5-MINUTE BLISS by Courtney E. Ackerman!

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Tips on Life & Love: How to Prepare for Your Daily Walk

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Excerpted from 5-Minute Bliss by Courtney E. Ackerman. Copyright © 2019 by the author. Used by permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

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