I walked 4.5 miles last Sunday. This is not necessarily a great feat or anything, but it is also something I rarely allow myself to take the time for. According to Google, my route “should” have taken 1.5 hours on foot, but I was dawdling quite a bit, stopping to chat with people, petting some dogs, watching squirrels and geese and taking pictures here and there. I observed A LOT. It was a cloudy day, but the rain held off and it stayed cool enough that I didn’t feel over dressed in my leggings and double long sleeved shirts.
I had set my intention earlier in the week that on my in-town “weekend getaway” that I was gonna take a long walk and explore the waterfront area on the west and east sides. The route I had in mind was only less than 3 miles, though. But then a strange thing happened… I got to the turn I would have made to stay on my original route and thought, I could keep going to that next bridge. I knew it was going to add significantly to the length and duration of my walk, but I thought about it and considered many of the affirmations I’ve encountered from people I’ve connected with on LinkedIn recently… inspirations like “you only tend to regret the things you DON’T do” and “test your limits regularly so you know your capacity.” I elected to keep on going.
Turns out that, given enough time, because I’m definitely no speedster, walking 4.5 miles is completely doable. And OHHHHH, the things I saw and heard, the sensory experience, the integration with the environment I was able to truly FEEL. And the thoughts that zipped around in and out of my head based on that environment! Some of the questions and bits of wisdom that came to me…
I wonder how the ambient noise of the interstate highway traffic constantly rushing along affects the wildlife on the riverbank. I wonder if geese and other birds have actually become louder themselves over generations to hear each other over the constant decibels. There was much graffiti all along my walk, but some of it was hopeful and it made me a little bit more hopeful myself that we are taking slow but steady steps toward a new paradigm. It’s time to push forward, building trust as we move, to bring disparate parties together for common purpose. Like my walk itself, it won’t be as fast as some would like, but movement is good and it is good for society as a whole as well.
It’s not that I ever thought I WASN’T capable of completing a 4.5 mile walk; I just hadn’t done it for a while, and hadn’t allowed myself the space and time to comfortably try. So, if I were to build on this momentum, what else might I be capable of? Digging further into building my “personal brand” (whatever the fuck that means)? Building a business on top of that based on trust and loyalty? (But what would I provide? Oh shut up, internal dialog! This is my dreamland, OK?)
Just starting to think about what I can do, as opposed to what I cannot. That reframing alone made the walk totally worth the extra time.