"Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet."
Thich Nhat Hanh
I am walking mindfully this week. I have to because I have a stress injury on a tendon over my ankle. It hurts. Each step is deliberate to maintain my stability and walking carefully takes all my attention. Forced mindfulness is not ideal, but, it is a practice.
Here are some instructions for walking mindfully which I received from my acupuncturist.
1.Stand up STRAIGHT with your back upright but not stiff. Feel your feet touching the ground and let your weight distribute evenly.
2.Curl the THUMB of your left hand in and wrap your fingers around it. Place it just above your belly button. Wrap your right hand around it, resting your right thumb in the crevice formed between your left thumb and index finger. (This creates some balance for you and keeps your swinging arms from being a distraction.)
3.Drop your GAZE slightly. This helps you maintain focus.
4.Step out with your left FOOT. Feel it swing, feel the heel hit the ground, now the ball, now the toes.
5.FEEL the same as the right foot comes forward.
6.Walk at a STEADY pace, slightly slower than in daily life but not funereal. When your attention wanders, bring it back to the sensations of your feet touching the ground
I wanted to learn doing one thing at a time and break my habit of multitasking, but I would not have willingly chosen walking.I am grateful to have a needful practice.
More mindfulness Monday posts here.