We all seem to know that the things that are most
important in our society aren't the best things for us,
yet few of us are willing to look at exactly what those
things are and do something about them. One element
of life that our society values that can be very damaging
to us as people is speed--there's very little actual need
for it, and our efforts to speed everything up can have
very negative effects on our lives.
Only when we purposely slow ourselves down and refuse to
jump into the speed game that we see just how calming and
relaxing something like taking a casual walk--not a speed
walk to burn a maximum number of calories--can be.
In fact, for many people taking a walk is quite the same
thing as meditation, and the walks allow them to think
things through more clearly, arriving at clarity much more
quickly and accurately than they would have if they hadn't
taken the time to slow down.
There are things that do take speed. A doctor in an
emergency room doesn't have a lot of time to make
decisions; factory workers with quotas to meet do need to
work quickly; a journalist with a deadline mustn't dally;
but in our lives there are many more situations that could
benefit from our slowing down, thinking clearly, and
pondering things more deeply.
Walking is wonderful exercise for the body and the mind
and the spirit, and it's very easy to do--and also very
easy to neglect. If we could spend more time walking
and taking life easy, we would spend more time feeling
good about ourselves and what we're doing.