health, Walking, wellbeing

Walking with your eyes open

How often do we walk with our eyes shut? It’s time we open ourselves to the world around us.

I like a walk as much as the next man, but today was something else. Having had a few friends get in touch recently and a few meet-ups being arranged – hooray! – one of those occurred today, but unlike the norm of a coffee catch up, today we agreed to just take a walk around our community.

Meeting in the centre of town with no plans of direction, we went where the mood took us, and this we did with open minds and hearts. I was reminded as we set off of a quote I’d read this morning from Alexander Graham Bell:-

“We are all too much inclined, I think, to walk through life with our eyes closed. There are things around us and right at our very feet that we have never seen because we have never really looked.”

And so we walked, and we walked, and we walked. We saw parts of the city I’ve not seen or appreciated for years, we discussed the history, the changing landscape, and how, even just a few steps off the beaten track, we can find peace and quiet. At one point, I was able to stand on a bridge, one of the main arterial roads into the town, and looking one way see gas-guzzling machines, hear the roar of vehicles, and feel trapped. Turn the other, and the peace and tranquillity of the canal was plain to see. Thankfully, most of where we walked fell into the latter.

More than seven miles of walking later, I was home. Whilst I sit here soaking my tired feet I’m able to reflect on a different ‘catch up’ where conversations were still plenty but I was able to walk with my eyes open and really look at where I live, feeling inspired again that the world around me isn’t perhaps as bad as it often seems. It’s amazing what it does for your wellbeing.

Why not try it sometime? Go for a walk, but do it with your eyes open.

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