Why Walkabouting?

As soon as I announced my plans, I got a lot of positive feedback and lots of people saying how much courage I had to do this, how they wished they could do the same. It sounds great, but also makes me wonder why.

Today, when I took my usual Sunday walk around the Alster lake, something was different. For the first time, I took the time to sit down on various benches around the lake and just enjoyed watching the glittering water and the waves. There weren’t even any people I watched, just some boats and the birds. There I realized what it is that makes life difficult and what makes me want (and need!) to get out:
We don’t have time for ourselves anymore. We get a bad conscience if we are just sitting somewhere, watching the world go by and not doing anything “productive”. Most of our daily life is constricted by society, by other people and we spend a lot of time trying to adhere to all those rules.

In the morning, we have to get up at a certain time because we need to be at work at a certain time. In work, other people tell us what to do and when to do it, we have fixed lunch hours and as we get the time pressure, we pass it on to the people working with us. Especially in my job, I constantly decide who uses their time in what way. And that is actually tiring! The pressure doesn’t stop, the more we get done, the more additional work we get.

Once we leave work, we are still not as free to use our time as we think. Gym, sports places, classes, bars, shopping, everything is defined by opening times and we have to respect those. So the time after work needs to be well planned and organized, only this time there’s no boss and no client to put the pressure on – we do it ourselves because we have to function in this world. We have to do what is expected of us.

Yoga is different in a way, at least when you are not limited to taking classes. I’m in the middle of building up a home practice and doing so, I find it very hard (but very relaxing) to stay in Savasana. It’s been said before that this is one of the hardest poses in yoga and yes, it’s true. Lying on your back doing nothing doesn’t sound hard, does it? Well, here’s your challenge: Try it at home, just lie down and don’t move a muscle while your mind is still awake. How long will you last? 😉

It’s been put into our heads that we mustn’t waste time! Yet, today, on that bench, that was exactly what I did – and it felt amazing! It charged me with energy, it cleared my head and it put a smile on my face. 🙂

That’s what I want to do my Walkabout for: I want to “waste time” by collecting memories like this day on the bench. I want to live in the moment without the pressure of a clock ticking away.

At the moment, I see the time racing past me and it feels like it’s running faster and faster without a moment for myself. That’s probably what caused this anxiety attack I had on Wednesday. It had been a busy week up until then and then it hit me while I was doing something I didn’t feel like doing at the time. Had I listened to my body and my brain, I had just stayed home that night.

Take the time to listen to what your inner voice is telling you – no matter what language it speaks 😉 And because that is incredibly hard in today’s society, more and more people are trying to get out, break the cycle, go traveling. That’s the people others call courageous – because they make their own rules instead of following the ones forced upon them.

That’s what my Walkabout is all about: Listening to my inner voice and following it 🙂


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