Day 20: Walking Meditation
Lesson 20 Chapter 1
Today we will practice a walking meditation (2 seconds).
First find a place for your mindful walking practice (2 seconds).
It's simplest to start where you are right now.
If you'd like to though, you can take this recording with you to a park or somewhere else you'd like to be. Find a place to walk that allows you to listen safely to the instructions, perhaps a smooth path without traffic (5 seconds).
Before you start walking take a moment and notice yourself standing (2 seconds). Feel your feet on the ground (2 seconds).
Notice how you're standing (5 seconds).
Just as we do with sitting meditation, invite your spine to lengthen and your shoulders to soften (5 seconds).
Stand in a way that feels upright, relaxed, and present (5 seconds).
Bring attention to your breath (2 seconds).
Take a deep breath in (2 seconds) and a long slow breath out (5 seconds).
Notice where you are (2 seconds), what sensations you are experiencing (2 seconds),
what do you see in front of you? (5 seconds)
Perhaps a specific color (2 seconds), or a shape there (2 seconds).
What sounds do you hear? (5 seconds)
Can you feel warmth or coolness? (5 seconds)
Is there a breeze or is the air still? (5 seconds)
What sensations do you notice in your body? (5 seconds)
Now consciously begin walking at whatever pace feels right to you. (10 seconds)
Can you notice the physical sensation of lifting your foot (2 seconds),
the sensation of your foot making contact with the ground? (10 seconds)
Continue walking for a few minutes, focusing on the very particular experience of your foot making contact with the ground. (5 seconds)
If it helps you can say to yourself, contact (2 seconds),
contact (2 seconds), contact (2 seconds). (5 seconds)
Begin to widen the focus of your awareness to include the experience of your whole body walking. (5 seconds)
What does it feel like for the body to move in this way? (2 seconds)
What are the range of sensations you are experiencing? (5 seconds)
Now while still being aware of your body, expand your awareness even further. (5 seconds)
Include the range of everything you're experiencing in your environment
from sights and sounds, to smells, and sensations. (5 seconds)
Can you be fully aware and present of walking in the middle of this very dynamic experience. (10 seconds)
Continue walking in this way as long as you'd like. (5 seconds)
You may try alternating your focus from the contact of your feet on the ground
to being aware of your whole body (2 seconds),
to being aware of the wider environment (2 seconds)
or simply pausing to appreciate something in your path (15 seconds).
When you're ready to finish (2 seconds), come back to standing still. (10 seconds) Finish with a full deep breath in (2 seconds)
and a long slow breath out. (5 seconds)
*ding* (15 seconds).
Find your feet. While in a meeting or giving a presentation (or just in a conversation with someone today), rest some attention on the sensations of the feet making contact with the ground to bring the mind and body back together and recenter.
How did shifting your attention to finding your feet impact your attention, energy, or focus?