Step Up to Mindful Walking

Let the sidewalk take you to a calmer place.
Mindful walking is one way to make a daily meditation practice part of your regular routine. While traditional meditation is done while sitting still, mindful walking is done on the go, whether on a quiet country road or a busy city, alone or walking in a crowd. The key is to pay attention to the experience of walking – the sights and sounds of your surroundings, the sensation of your feet on the ground and the rhythm of your gait. Mindful walking is a great way for busy people to incorporate a meditation practice into their weekly routine – it just requires bringing a different quality of attention to something you’re already doing.

Here’s how to try it:

  1. Pick a time when you can practice mindful walking for at least 5 minutes, ideally as part of a regular occasion like walking the dog or going to work.
  2. Notice the physical sensation of walking and the sights and sounds of the world around you as you move through space. Try adjusting your pace and notice the difference in feeling.
  3. Help focus your mind by counting your steps or repeating “left, right, left, right” as you walk.

Mindful walking can be done whenever and wherever you like, all week long! Return to this practice when you feel a little mental clarity and focus could improve your day.

Give mindful walking a try this Monday, guided by this free audio meditation from Headspace.