A walk? Really?
Yes, a walk!
Especially as people age, thoughts and concerns about their health become more prevalent. Conversations focus on physical aches and pains, health scares, or the side effects of medications they are taking. Some times it even seems like a contest to see whose body is the most broken down.
These thoughts keep people distracted from DOING just about anything other than bemoan their poor physical condition. Worse, they serve as an EXCUSE not to do anything other than bemoan their poor physical condition!
According to Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, our physical health is one of our most basic, physiological needs. Until we have a plan in place, and are taking action on that plan, "happily ever after" will continue to elude us.
THAT is why the walking component of Walk with Me is sooooooo important!
You poo-poo the benefits of walking?
You believe walking is too slow, too gentle, too boring?
You believe exercise needs to be fast, high impact, and a social occasion?
You believe laundry and dishes need to be done before you focus on your health and well-being?
You believe walking can't possibly help you on your mission to contribute something unique to the world?
Here's what you need to know about walking...
Physical benefits of walking
Mental and emotional benefits of walking
Spiritual benefits of walking
"Walking is amazing. But it isn't the action of walking that changed my life. It's what goes on in my mind WHILE I'm walking that has changed my life."
The calling of your Heart, the passion of your Spirit was put on hold because of the stories you tell yourself.
You tell yourself stories to avoid taking care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Instead of "Once upon a time..." your stories begin with "If I didn't have to..."
You created stories about your relationships, your job, and your body.
You created stories about your desires and your dreams.
You created stories to keep yourself safe and protected.
Your stories support putting everyone else's needs and wants before your own. They come complete with innocent maidens, sinister villains, and dark, foreboding forests.
Believing your stories keeps you trapped in a rut of inactive sameness that leaves you feeling dissatisfied and frustrated.
And as long as you believe them, "happily ever after" will always remain just out of reach.
But just as you stopped believing in (Gasp!) the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and that frogs become princes, you can stop believing your own finely crafted fairy tales.
You can rewrite your stories about your relationships, your job, and your body.
You can rewrite your stories about your desires and your dreams.
You can rewrite your stories so that YOU are the hero who creates your own happily ever after, instead of waiting for someone else to give it to you.
One of the best stories to rewrite is the one you tell yourself about walking.
Original story: I hate getting out of bed to exercise.
Rewritten story: Once upon a time, there lived a lovely 50-something year old woman. She woke each morning as the sun was crawling out of its own bed. Without a care about her hair, her makeup or her breath, she stepped outside into whatever weather Mother Nature threw together for her. She tucked earbuds into her ears, tapped a few buttons on her phone, and began to walk.
As she walked, her feet kept pace with the energetic or relaxing beat of the music playing in her ears. She smiled as memories associated with her favorite songs flitted through her mind. She created a mental playlist of songs she'd use at the live retreats she wanted to lead for cancer caregivers. She ended her walk feeling upbeat, happy, and ready for the day.
Original story: I don't have time to exercise.
Rewritten story: Once upon a time, there lived a lovely 50-something year old woman. She spent long hours each workday chained to a desk. But when the clock struck twelve, the chains disappeared. She was granted freedom for a period of time.
She leaped from her chair and hurried outside to greet the sun, the clouds, the birds, and the squirrels. She breathed deeply, inhaling the fresh air and exhaling the stress of her morning. She skipped across the parking lot to the 1-mile walking path created for employee use. As she walked, she tuned in to a bird's chatter. As if by magic, its chatter was translated into the answer to a nagging problem she'd been dealing with all morning. The monkey that had been on her back, jumped off, and joined the squirrels in play. When she returned to her desk, the chains didn't feel quite so tight. She felt connected with herself and her intuition. She quickly jotted down a few items to research for the book she was writing before she turned her attention back to her computer screen.
Original story: Walking isn't real exercise.
Rewritten story: Once upon a time, there lived a lovely 50-something year old woman. She loved being active, and really enjoyed high impact, high intensity activities, but injuries kept her on the sidelines all too often.
When her friend invited her to walk, she resisted the idea. She didn't think she could enjoy an activity unless it was really intense. But her friend set a fast pace, intentionally walked UP hills, and walked at least 3-miles every day.
This lovely woman learned that walking CAN be a high intensity activity without the high risk associated with high impact activities. She learned to appreciate the gentle elegance of this simple form of exercise. She became an avid walker, who still participated in the higher impact activities as she could.
She began inviting inactive friends who resisted high impact exercise to walk with her. She enjoyed a deepening of their friendships and a knowing that this action would increase the likelihood that they would be walking together for decades.
Original story: If I didn't have to cook dinner, fold laundry, or wipe whiskers off the bathroom vanity, I would have the time and energy to work on my Whatever Venture℠.
Rewritten story: Once upon a time, there lived a lovely 50-something year old woman. She had devoted decades of her life to taking care of others. It's what she did, and she was good at it. She enjoyed it. It was a big part of her identify. But a voice whispered that she was more than the many roles she played. It told her there was a special mission for her to complete.
Reluctantly she tucked her excuses into her fanny pack along with her house keys, wallet, and phone. She knew if she was going to do this, she needed to build up her strength and endurance. She knew she'd have to set boundaries around her time and energy. She knew she'd have to figure out what she was supposed to do and how to do it. She knew that committing her time and energy to a consistent walking program would help her accomplish all of those things and more. And so she laced up her shoes, put on her headphones, and went outside each day for a walk.
While she walked she tuned in to messages from her spirit guides. She listened to books and podcasts that taught her what to do, how to do it, and how to silence her inner critics. She imagined the change she wanted to make in the world. She believed she could create that change. She became the person she needed to be to serve her life's purpose. Her energy increased, her health improved, and her heart felt a level of joy-filled satisfaction she had never experienced.
Walking is an activity that satisfies your body's need for movement; your mind's need for focus; your heart's need to feel; and your spirit's need to connect.
Walking generates greater feelings of confidence, joy and fulfillment, because you are investing time and energy into your own health and well-being. It's your turn!
Walking gives you a quiet time that allows you to step out of your day, away from the tasks on your to-do list, and into your secret world of possibilities.
Walking gives you time to question the thoughts and beliefs that led to your current life circumstances (without inserting shame or blame into the mix).
You can increase your knowledge, strengthen your mind, and improve your self-awareness by listening to audio books, podcasts, and other educational or inspirational resources while you walk.
You can process and physically release feelings that are holding you back and keeping you safe in your practically perfect, but not quite fulfilling life.
Rewriting the stories that separate you from your dreams and your destiny is an ongoing activity in Walk with Me.
Are you ready to lace up your walking shoes?
It’s time to get some fresh air and a fresh outlook on your future!