Santi Younger

Philosopher's Walk 30 Day Challenge

Why This Challenge?

I’ve decided to do a experiment. I’m doing a 30 day walk challenge.

I’ll call it “Philosopher’s Walk Challenge”

“I can only meditate when I am walking. When I stop, I cease to think; my mind only works with my legs.”

  • Jean-Jacque Rousseau

For the past years I’ve been obsessed with philosophy, particularly Stoicism. In my journey towards learning about all types of philosophers I’ve come across the fact that the best thinkers trusted in the power of walks to free their mind from stress and replace that stress for creativity.

I’ve never been an avid walker. This time I want to take walks where I detach from my phone, that means no music, no audio-books, no podcast, just thoughts.

Rules

No phone allowed

Company is permitted

Day 1

During this walk I didn’t try to purposefully think about any problem in particular. Naturally my urge to turn everything I do into some creative idea lead me down a strange path.

I wanted to do this 30 day walk challenge to build the habit of walking. I thought it would be cool to write a blogpost about my experience. This quickly got out of control into the following thoughts.

  • I can track my daily thoughts
  • I can measure data on things like time, distance
  • I can go even further, tracking my mood per day

It quickly got out of hand into the full fledged blogpost that you are reading right now.

Day 2

I had a bit of a stressful walk, it started alright and it was great to be out after a busy day. In the middle of the walk I remembered I need to sort out some freelance tax stuff urgently, so I was anxious to go back home quickly to sort it out.

Thankfully, since I was walking my dog Zizu with my girlfriend I had a nice talk with her and did my best to relax. Now that I am home I sorted out my taxes and feel better about it. I can’t wait for tomorrow’s walk though.

Day 3

Walk in nature with girlfriend, mom and my dog Zizu, amazing experience much needed.

We went to a beautiful river which is 30 minutes drive away, that’s the best part of Ecuador amazing nature not so far away from home.

Day 4

I couldn’t sleep last night, I was overthinking, not necessarily stressful stuff. I was having tons of ideas, my ideas where having ideas. This is often exciting, but when feeling sleep deprived something I doubt my ability to excuse this ideas.

Today I’ve been feeling tired after a bad night sleep. I value sleep more than I value most things, so even thought I was feeling a bit lazy for this walk, I had a great time walking Zizu, and letting the ideas flow.

I even came up with a nice sounding quote:

Don’t let insecurities hide behind what looks like resonable excuses.

Day 5

I was getting obsessed over learning a certain subject that I’m passionate about, I hit a wall of overwhelm, this is where thankfully I forced myself to go for a walk.

Day 6

I was feeling pretty stressed, I’m happy I forced myself to go for this walk. I feel a bit overwhelmed by certain stressful things I need to do, but I can definitely see how the walk helped free some tension.

Day 7

I usually go for my walk in the afternoon. I started experiencing some anxiety during the morning. I just came back from it and I do feel better than I did. I’ve been feeling overwhelmed this last couple of days. I know there will be days where I don’t see the point in walking nor on keeping this log of my thoughts.

I just have to trust that the walk will benefit me, and that this track of my thoughts might help someone else as well to do the same.

Day 8

Today was satisfying, I had a productive work session, I actually finished video editing project that process that usually takes me over 3 hours in almost half the time. Going for my daily walk felt like a nice transition to the next things I want to do with my day. I’m in a good mood right now, ready to take onto more fulfilling work.

Day 9

Today has been challenging, yet I’ve been dealing with it better than previous days. The stress and anxiety on all the things I want to achieve faded away with this walk.

Today I walked with my girlfriend and we talked a lot about software.

I’m developing courses to teach people how to have more technological self-reliance she had some interesting thoughts on certain things that might work. She gave me good ideas, we had a pleasant talk and 40 minutes went away in an instant.

Day 10

I was trying to solve some problems with the online courses on productivity that I’m building. I say my mind not being able to focus anymore into seeing thing clearly.

Frustration was coming, so thankfully I have this habit to force me go for a walk.

I walked my dog with my girlfriend and I nice relaxing time.

Day 11

Today is Sunday and we have plans with my family, so I had to go for my walk early in the morning. I had a lot of thoughts I needed to organize for the online courses I’m building, my girlfriend is a great listener and full of great ideas, I’m writing all of these new ideas down before leaving the house.

Day 12

Today I went with my family horse riding in the morning, it was awesome, but it left me pretty tired. I was posponing my walk until later in the day. I went for a quick one fust before I went dark, I didn’t feel like it, nor did I feel mood improvent, but I’m glad I didn’t break the chain of habit.

Day 13

Simple walk, I had some good ideas, the kind of thoughts that I was eager to come back and write down. Since I don’t have my phone I had to try to keep them in mind. Now, if you excuse me I’ll go write them down.

Day 14

It doesn’t always rain here in Ecuador were I live, but when it does it goes crazy. There was a thunder that cut out the power, so I’ve been out of internet for the past hours. I waited for the rain to go down a bit to go for the walk.

I actually really enjoy rain, I got my old coat from times living in England and walked all the way to a nice park where the smell of grass felt amazing.

It’s easy to make an excuse not to walk on days like this so I’m glad I did, because it was one of the best walks so far.

Day 15

Half way there, it’s been so far a great habit to get into, today it was raining again. I had nice company Zizu and my girlfriend. I cleared of my mind, ready to organize some thoughts and plan out some of the work I want to do tomorrow before the weekend.

Day 16

I’ve been having a good day so far, I finally fixed some things on my website that I’ve been postponing. Instead of trying to fix more of the endless problems that come from creating online content, I decided to take a break for my walk, it was pleasant.

I’ve been listening to the audio-book of Malcolm X’s autobiography. I only started it yesterday and I’m halfway through. I wanted to listen to it on my walk, but I resisted my urges and decided to stick to the “no phones allowed” rule. I’m glad I did, but now back to the book.

Day 17

Today was extremely different to other walks. The only one that was kind of similar was on Day 3. I wen with my mom, girlfriend, brother, and my brother’s friend to this amazing lake.

This place was a 3 hour drive away from the city. We walked around this massive lake with a beautiful view.

I’ve been feeling stuck in my progress towards the work I want to do, so it was valuable to have a break in nature and breathe some fresh air.

Day 18

I was feeling pretty low, a bit of a headache and some personal issues bugging me. Thankfully my walk put me back on track. It was pretty incredible how much of a mood boost I got today out of some fresh air.

Today was a reminder of the importance of chasing pace, breaking mental patterns by doing something different. I’m starting to see the power of the walk.

Day 19

Nice long walk. I was feeling pretty good before the walk, but after some fresh air I feel even better.

Even-though it takes an extra effort to allot time in the day for a walk, it’s a habit that’s worth acquiring, I don’t know how easy it would be to make this into a permanent everyday habit, but I’m glad I have this blog post to revisit whenever I feel like remembering why walks are worth it.

Day 20

Today we went for a dog-walk with Grace (my girlfriend), she needed to vent about some decisions she needs to make. It was nice to be there for her and listen. I’m happy to know that this walks have helped me sustain a healthy relationship.

In other news, Zizu (my dog) got off the leash and started running like a maniac. Grace and I run after him worried of him running into the street as cars where passing by. It was only when Grace stopped running that he went towards her. It was stressful, but fun.