Updated: May 12, 2021
That thing they say about habits forming when you stick with something? It’s true. Over the past month, I have established a habit. And it has supplied me with hidden benefits I never planned on experiencing.
It began as a challenge. Become a healthier you. Over the next 100 days, take 1 million steps, an average of 10,000 per day. That was motivation enough. But the allure became stronger when there was a financial incentive tied to it. Achieve this goal and receive a discount on your health insurance premiums. Sold.
So, over the past month, I’ve been exceeding my personal goals, averaging close to 14,000 steps daily. Each morning, I begin my routine with a 3.5 mile walk around 6am. Excessive Florida heat and unpredictable afternoon showers influenced the time choice. But, what started out as a physical endeavor became much more than that.
I become so entranced by the music I listen to while walking. My gait marches in beat to the rhythm. And, in an unexplainable way, I feel the words when I get into this bubble of synchronicity. Some songs I’ve used recently in my Tuesday Tunes social media posts have come from those morning walks. While listening to tunes I’ve heard a 100 times before, something peculiar happened. It’s only while immersed in the moment that I fully recognized those lyrics for the first time. Until.
There’s this length of sidewalk, over a mile long, near the end of my daily route. You can see everyone coming toward or heading away from you. And there was someone ahead of me. My pace changed as I contemplated what to do. Do I speed up and pass the person? Do I hang back and allow them space? The entire mojo associated with my surroundings and the music became disruptive. I was more concerned about what was in front of me instead of remaining present. And the most ironic thing of all? I stumbled upon this realization on the next day, when there was nary a soul in sight along that same stretch.
It’s not always easy to stay in the present. But when we recognize those moments of beautiful serendipity when we are there? It’s a nice reminder that the present is called so because it is, indeed, a gift.
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