It’s almost impossible during times of stress to be motivated to do hard things. For all but the most hardcore exercisers, ice cream just seems more soothing than running when you are emotionally exhausted (Right?). I’m no different. But, as much as I would like to think “later” will be ok to regain what I have lost in these months of being more sedentary than usual, I have begun to realize that I needed to get moving again.
Enter Richard Rohr
I’ve been a fan of Richard Rohr for years. He’s a gifted writer with the laugh and smiling eyes of someone who has tapped into something I want to know more about. I subscribe to his weekly email, which this week introduced Jonathan Stall’s practice of moving “as a way to invite brave creativity.”
There is a lot to unpack in that idea.
What exactly would “brave creativity” look like? I’m not sure, but it sounded like something I, and I suspect all of us, need more of right now.
“We invite you, as able, to take some time this weekend to move mindfully through your local area.”
I set off on a different kind of walk.
I grabbed my mask and headed out for a walk in my neighborhood, trying to think about this not just as exercise, but as something more. I read Jonathan Stall’s advice again:
- Bring something to jot ideas down while you are out, but more importantly, invite your “goals/pains/dreams” to join you on this walk.
- Walk for at least 30-40 minutes
- Wear a mask if you get within 6-10 feet of anyone (respect for your neighbor)
- Start the walk with a sense of being open. “As you begin to move, seek the realms of wonder, of space, and of reaching high into what’s possible…”
Where did all these lawn chairs come from?
I’ve walked many times before in my neighborhood, and I’m an observant person. But today, as I walked, I began to notice all the chairs on people’s lawns and all the swings, and “tires” hanging from trees.
Were they always here and I didn’t notice them?
Are more people sitting outside now than before – even though it’s outrageously hot here in August?
Is this because of how much we all need (safe) connection to each other during the time of pandemic?
Are there actually more chairs, swings and tires because of how much we all need to hear birds, see trees and listen to the cicadas in the summer evening right now?
Yes, there will be next steps. This experiment led me to more questions than answers, but I had a real a sense of being taught, too.
Let me know what you see.