When we integrate meditation into our lives we give ourselves space to slow down and focus our attention on what is important to us. Practising mindful movement even for just ten minutes a day can help us reconnect with our mind and body to find peace and calm.
Here is a guided walking practice to help you take a break and boost your mood.
1) As you begin, walk at a natural pace. Place your hands wherever comfortable, by your side, behind your back in a comfortable and relaxed position.
2) Now for a few moments expand your attention to the sounds around you. Whether you are indoors, in the woods, or in a park or city, pay attention to sounds without labelling or naming them or getting caught up in whether you find them pleasant or unpleasant. Just notice them and become aware of them.
3) Shift your awareness to your sense of smell. Again simply notice. Don't push or force yourself to feel anything at all, just bring attention to the sense of smell, whatever you discover.
4) Now move to vision, colours and objects and whatever else you see. Patiently coming back each time something grabs your attention, or even if something needs addressing, like avoiding an obstacle. Staying natural, not rigid, not daydreaming and drifting, but with simple awareness.
5) Keep this open awareness of everything around you. Nothing to do. Nothing to fix, nothing to change. Fully aware and walking.
6) In the last moments, come back to awareness of the physical sensations of walking. Notice your feet again touching the ground. Notice the movements within your body with each step.
When you're ready to end your walking meditation, stand still for a moment. Pausing, choose a moment to end the practice. As you finish, consider how you might bring this kind of awareness into the rest of your day. Enjoy!