Well we are now one month into 2020 – where did that month go!
I am sure just like me your January has been far busier than you planned for. We really are masters of overfilling our days, and then wonder why we can’t fit everything in. There are some things that I wanted to do at the start this year that haven’t yet made it to the top of the ‘to do’ list, and those I need to move into actions. However there are some that are a regular habit now and I am pleased to say are continuing to be built into everyday.
The first habit I am really pleased to say is a regular is walking. I have recognised for a couple of years now the benefits of walking to my overall wellbeing make it a must do not just a nice to have.
Walking for my physical health
All of the health people will tell you-walking is good cardio exercise if you go at a brisk pace of at least 3 miles per hour. Without getting into the technical stuff cardio exercise works my large muscles over and over and pushes your heart and lungs to work harder. Over time, my heart is stronger and as it’s a muscle, after all – more efficient.
Daily brisk walking helps me maintain a healthy weight, the first thing that I have ever enjoyed. It can also prevent various conditions, including heart disease and high blood pressure. As my body has grown into walking everyday and learnt to walk faster, it has definitely strengthened my bones and muscles, and improved my balance and coordination.
An added benefit is that you can do it alone or in a group. I choose to walk alone for my regular morning walk. It is a fast pace just over 2 miles local route. As I know exactly how long it takes it is easy to fit into an even busy working day. The rest of my day is active. I take the stairs not lift, park as far away from any building I am visiting and build as much walking into the day as possible. My target for the day is 6 miles so sometimes that means an evening walk around the block as well.
If you don’t like the idea of lone walking then join others. Walking for Health are one of England’s largest network of free group health walk schemes. Run by Ramblers helping all kinds of people lead a more active lifestyle www.walkingforhealth.org.uk. You could even start your own walking group – after all you only need a group of friends and a pair of shoes!
Walking for my mental health
Walking has the added benefit of not only improving our bodies but also improving our minds. If you would like more information on the benefits and ways to improve take a look at Dr Chatterjee’s website https://drchatterjee.com. He has loads of information and some great simple ideas to help improve ourselves.
For me walking gives me the space and environment to order and process my thoughts. I have chance to reflect on the day before. That may be a Coaching Supervision session with an experienced coach who wanted to talk through a challenging client or a Coaching session with a client who is seeking to understand a difficult relationship in the workplace. It may not be a client conversation at all. It could be an exciting conversation with a colleague that leaves me with a ‘could that really be possible’ left in my head that needs working through.
So often our worlds are full of noise and chatter that we do not hear the ideas in our own heads. For me my head needs fresh air and time alone so that I can hear what needs sorting or responding to. My walking gives me that freedom.
Coaching Derive (walking coaching)
The other time when walking is important to me is when I get the opportunity to spend time with a client walking coaching. These sessions are very different and for certain clients allow the coaching conversation to unfold at a pace that is beneficial to them. Not facing one another, allows greater freedom to express emotion for some clients. When conversations flow freely clients can see and hear the links that they have been searching for.
Creating a Habit
The important part of anything you wish to build into the you of the future is that you start with a plan, create some actions, implement the actions – then – and the most important element – keep doing it and keep reminding yourself why it is import to you. In time you have created the habit and you will depend less and less on the external reminders as the internal takes over. I no longer need the external reminders to go walking. If I do not walk I feel all wrong, I become unhappy and then sad. My body knows what it needs and I respond – shoes on and out the door!
Let us know what habit you are trying to create in 2020 keep a lookout for our future development sessions to see if the may help you