Here’s how to do it.
At its most stripped down, a person chooses to represent another person, or a quality or anything you want to know more about and sets out on a walk around the room, as that person or quality. The representative declares two or three times, “I am now [Joe, Marilyn, my new job, my vocation, the National Security Administration or whatever]” and sets off walking around the space, noticing what he or she notices and speaking it aloud.
And incredibly useful! A great deal of information about the subject is immediately available to the Walker and s/he is verbalizing it.
The list of possible topics to Walk is endless – whatever is topical for you! You can Walk as anything important to you and you certainly don’t have to limit Walking to problem areas. If you’re familiar with Voice Dialogue or other “parts work” you’ll know that the opposite of any attitude or position we habitually inhabit is likely to contain gold.
For example, you could say two or three times and then walk . . .
- I am now my real vocation
- I am now what my spiritual life really needs
- I am now my Ideal client
- I am now [my hard-to-handle co-worker]
- I am now [the character in the book I’m writing]
- I am now [taking care of that problem]
- I am now elegantly dealing with [x]
- I am now [the job I’m considering]
Do let the walk have a definite endpoint, so that you can clearly distinguish between it and your everyday self.This is good parts etiquette and helps with clarity and groundedness.
Walking takes us below the idea into the bodily reality.
A first Walk I made was as a visitor to my website. I wanted to sense how visitors were seeing my offerings. Were their needs being met and what were their needs? By Walking as them, I quickly understood, viscerally and clearly, the sense of isolation and need for connection so many of us spiritual awakeners and Evolutionaries feel. We needed to work together in community and not just solo. I’d known intellectually, I could feel in a full-bodied way and present way.
Try and see for yourself!
There’s a strong side-benefit to Walking too. Walking frees us up from rigid self-identity. I’m not just this self; I’m can explore being any self and someone else can Walk for me or any part of my life.
Walking isn’t dangerous but do take care of yourself while doing it. If something seems to be in the way, quit for the day and maybe later that’s something you could walk too, to find out more about it.
NOTE: When you’ve completed, make a point of stepping out of that role and returning to your regular self. Separate the “walking” from the ordinary self.
Walking with a partner or facilitator
You can Walk alone, with a partner or in a facilitated group.
If you’re Walking by yourself, then you, in effect, play the facilitator / observer role. When I Walk by myself, I take a time out when I want and look at the Walk from the outside. I might make some notes, or see if there’s something else needing to be Walked, asked or explored.
An advantage of Walking on your own is that you can do it anywhere and pretty much anytime. You just do it. This requires a certain independence of spirit which many don’t call forth though we can. The chief drawback to reading about walking is that you’ll not actually try it.
The advantage of Walking with a partner is that the other might see something that you didn’t. This could be something obvious, or not obvious. The hardest thing is for us to see is . . . what we don’t know we’re not seeing.
It’s true too that some partners and facilitators have a combination of experience and gift that’s worth taking advantage of. Seeing is an art and some of us see dimensions others miss entirely. One man, an important person in my life, once shared that he dreamed he was blind. But he couldn’t understand the meaning of his dream, which of course was that he was blind in some way.
We can all be blind like that, in our way, missing the obvious.
If a facilitator is able to see into the systemic aspect of things (as a systemic constellation practitioner does, for example) he or she will have access to perspectives that you’ve not thought of. That’s because system awareness is unconscious for most of us most of the time.
Another advantage of a partner or group is that seeing different Walks reminds us that we share the human journey, whatever the territory we find ourselves today. We see again that we all cross high mountains with beautiful views and deep valleys where it’s harder for us to get perspective.
If we do all of our journeys on our own, it’s easy to become private or defensive about what we’re working on. Never working on “our stuff” with others leads to the sense that ours is different than theirs, something that it’s not safe to share.
You can figure out these things as you go along. Try Walking if you like the sound of it. It provides fresh perspective – right away – and being able to take in multiple perspectives is at the heart of what helps us evolve and grow.
I’d be pleased to give the first five people who ask a 30-minute intro to Walking. It would likely involve each of us doing a little Walk and then a conversation about it. Email me back and we’ll set up a time.