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How To Use Walking As A Way To Stay In The Present Moment

Updated on February 1, 2012

Walk The Walk...

You have likely heard the expression "to walk the walk and talk the talk." While the phrase refers to acting in the way that you speak, walking has additional benefits that focus less on talking and more on learning to listen effectively. Walking outdoors provides you with a great opportunity to center yourself in the moment after strapping on your sneakers.

Let's Go.

Let's Go.
Let's Go. | Source

Walk This Way

No, I am not referring to the song "Walk This Way" by Aerosmith, although that is quite the rocking tune.

Walking, aside from being a great form of exercise, provides a way for you to stop living in your mind. You "live in your mind" when you become caught up in your thoughts and lose a sense of connection with your physical surroundings.

Have you ever "watched" a television show and found that when it ended you hadn't really been paying any attention? Perhaps you can not even remember the title of the show. You have likely not suffered a memory failure. When you become overly consumed with your thoughts to the point that your attention to the television comes secondary, you are kept from living in the present.

Walking can help shift you back into the present moment if you adapt these tips.

The Tips

Imagine you are outside going for a walk. Now imagine that you are listening to the sounds around you. I mean really listening.

  • Listen to the birds chirping. Literally.
  • Can you hear cars? Are the motors running? Horns beeping?
  • Are people's voices within hearing range?

Listen. Pay attention to the sounds. Dissect further.

  • How many birds can you hear? Keep a tally of the number in your head.
  • Can you pick out any of the words that you hear in conversations?
  • What is making that whirring sound in the distance? Can you identify the sound?

Ah, The Result

By adapting these tips for active listening, you are engaging with your environment. You don't have your attention focused on your essay due tomorrow or what to say if an interviewer phones you next week. Instead, your focus is on the Now.

When you return home you will likely find your mind refreshed and ready to tackle that problem with extra energy. Give your mind a rest from your current problems to enjoy your surroundings. Take the time for yourself. You may even learn something new about your neighbourhood as you walk. Now there's a welcome bonus!

Do You Live In The Now?

Do You Regularly Live In the Present Moment?

See results


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    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      @tsmog, thank-YOU as well for coming by to read the hub. I am glad you are smiling and hope it's a good reminder to stay in the moment. Speaking of moments, I am actually going for a walk in a few! :)

      @Ruby, Yes that certainly would be eye-catching! Take your camera next time and you could make a hub about it! Thanks for the comment, take care.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 5 years ago from Escondido, CA

      I'm smiling Christy. This is a gem for sure. I'm making a list like Santa, but for health and not naughty or nice. This has been added with a bit of inspiration, so maybe a better fight this time. Thank you for taking some time out of you busy life to share these wise words.


    • Ruby H Rose profile image

      Maree Michael Martin 5 years ago from Northwest Washington on an Island

      Oh yeah, Aerosmith is a favorite band of mine! I too find walking in nature brings me back to the present moment. Today, four crows at the rest stop really caught my attention. That was fun!

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Yes I believe it is the 'practice what you preach' mentality at work here. Hehe. Oh that Raymond!

    • profile image

      Raymond Alexander Kukkee 5 years ago

      Christyb, and when walking, I try very hard not to walk into steel poles, although doing so can wake one up to reality pretty fast...":)))

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Yes those experiences are exactly what I am trying to describe in my hub. I am all for the concept of 'mindfulness' and am glad you enjoyed the advice.

    • profile image

      Sooner28 5 years ago

      You know, I've noticed this about myself. I will be driving, and then all of the sudden I will come back to reality and not even remember ever "leaving" the road. Or when I am reading a book or a hub, I will abruptly find out I am at the end of the piece of writing. This is great advice, and it is actually a concept in Buddhism called "mindfulness."

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Thanks Lori, I appreciate that! Walking can truly be more than exercise and I wanted to share what I have learned.

    • LoriSoard profile image

      LoriSoard 5 years ago from Henryville, Indiana

      I really enjoyed this hub. Way to go on coming up with a unique perspective on this topic.