It is solved by walking...

Solvitur Ambulando

A coachee sent a link to the article below this morning. The phrase means, “It is solved by walking.” (its a long article and kind of fun if you have time. I didn't have time before writing this!)

It came at the perfect moment. I had just finished a cup of coffee. I had set an intention the night before, to walk the dog early today. And I was waffling. “Real” tasks beckoned. A load of laundry before packing for a weekend away. Make a blog post. Answer email. Meet the handyman fixing a hole in our roof.

It reminded me of Julia Cameron’s The Artist Way. Ms. Cameron prescribes three tools for expanding creativity and creation. The Artist’s Date: where each week the artist makes time to experience art. What that means is up to the artist: it can mean visiting a museum. It can also mean sitting in a park and watching the art of nature. Another tool is Morning Pages. Each morning the artist sits with pen or pencil and paper and fills three pages with words. The goal is to fill the pages period: no expectation of quality, pure quantity. It’s a kind of brain dump that clears the decks for whatever comes next in the day.

The last is Walking. Each day, spend some time walking. Like the writing, there is no agenda for the walk.

What I think it does is put us out into the world, in what we now call nature (even if that is in a city –after all, humans are part of nature too.) Civilization is a recent part of human history so when we walk, we are doing what humans have always done by tradition: we move around outside, noticing the world around us.

I don’t know for sure, but it makes sense to me that when we walk, there is a “tuning” effect: our brain coordinates with our body and moves in a regular way, repeatedly, for a period of time. Our brains can go so fast! (especially ramped up by electronic media!) Even if our brain is racing when we start, walking forces at least part of the brain to slow down and manage the physical activity. And that tuning, that alignment in one part of the brain, becomes contagious. We’re invited to notice the trees, the plants. (Oops, also the dog shit that someone did not clean up! Step around that!) We become in tune with Right Now and let go of what’s next, what just happened.

Walking Makes Us Present.

What a gift!