Get Outside and Walk for Your Mental Health

— Written By and last updated by Elisabeth Purser
en Español

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Walking on a TrailAs we near the end of Mental Health Awareness Month, I wanted to take a moment to slow things down a bit to give us all a moment of reflection. We live in a loud world which sometimes forces us to not be able to focus on the day-to-day of our lives. One way to be more mindful is to make time to be quiet. One way to do this is by creating a space where you can be quiet and actually be quiet through a nature walk. 

Find a local trail, you can find different trails to participate in at or visit your local parks and recreation department. Start your nature walk as normal, but take your time. Pay attention to the bottom of your feet, feel your heel touch the ground first, and then lift off with your toes. How do your feet feel inside your shoes? During your walk, take your time and a deep breath in, then slowly breathe out. Pay attention to how the breath travels from deep within your lungs and exiting your body. As you continue with your nature walk, continue to notice how your body feels, and what you see and hear during your walk. 

This activity is a simple mindfulness exercise found in a National 4-H curriculum called Mindful Mechanics. To learn more contact the local 4-H office at 704.283.3735 or 704.283.3740.