Day 13 of the #200wad challenge.
I'm here in Ubud, Bali on a solo personal retreat for some year-end reflection and rejuvenation. I'd been taking evening walks recently and rediscovering how powerful it is to uplift the quality of my life.
A typical day: I'll wake up naturally without an alarm clock at about 8am. Yoga, meditation and light breakfast follows. Done with my morning rituals, I'll take a look at my coffice (cafe-as-an-office) list and bike out to work at the cafe from late morning till about 4pm. Then I'll head out to explore a village that I'd never been, take a stroll, fly my drone, shoot some pictures. It's a sublime experience, which I wrote more about here. A beautiful way to end the day - a "perfect evening" if you may.
This contrasts with my usual life in Singapore, where evening walks consists of rushing for the train, jostling and squeezing in the peak hour crowd. That's hardly slowing down. In fact, if you live a city life, you hardly have the chance to slow down at all. Even back at home, it's we rush to cook, wash dishes, chores, errands, shower. We even rush to sleep because we got an early day of work the next day!
It's not for the lack of trying (to slow down, take walks etc). It's simply just not as convenient and easy to find little corners of peace like in Ubud. The roads here might be chaos and screaming "Hurry up!" next to your ear, but turn a corner into a village street and in 5 minutes you're miles away from the craziness. It's quiet, idyllic, and everything gently whispers "Slow down...".
There's something deeply nourishing about taking time to slow down after a hectic day of working and hustling. It lets me take back my sanity. Resets my monkey mind. Your steps feel lighter, breath, deeper, And it's slowly dawning on me that the evening walks are giving me a quality of life, a sense of living and being alive, that I never knew. Life becomes more immediate, and appreciated.
Evening walks are probably the most understated, non-obvious, quality-of-life-improving lifehack that everyone knows but few really do.