After many years of blogging, and consistent with my desire to move toward retirement, we have ended the Insights blog. Thanks to Doug Bedell for his years of blog support.

For Fresh New Insights, Take a Walk

Posted on November 21, 2015
Filed Under The Writing Life | Leave a Comment

Are you stuck? Need a new concept? Go take a walk, a nice long one. That’s what Sarah Maddox does when she needs a change of mental scenery.

These days, we should have realized, when you’re out walking and come up with welcome new insights, you can scribble them on a piece of paper, or better yet, send yourself emails on your cellphone, “sometimes a series of them.”

snoqualmiefalls-seattle-1“Make sure,” Sarah adds on her Ffeathers blog, that “you capture the actual words of your thoughts, because they encapsulate the insight that you’ve come to.” Faced with appearing before a group, Sarah found she had virtually a whole new presentation after one of her walks. “It’s a bit like those fictional characters who take a story in directions the author hadn’t originally designed.”

And are they welcome!

“I went for a walk,” Sarah elaborates, “watched the birds, admired the budding trees, wrote myself some emails. The end result was that I removed the worrisome section and integrated some of it into the rest of the presentation. The entire concept of the document had developed and moved beyond its erstwhile centre piece.”

A bit like “the breeze and I” getting work done together, we’d say. Taking a walk probably will beat switching on a football game or doing something else in your home office setting to open new streams of insight, or recover helpful recollections. Our minds, after all, are connected to our eyes, feelings and muscles to prompt an entire insight-generating system to change course.

That’s our aim, anyway. Thanks for the suggestion, Sarah. I’m going out for a walk. – Doug Bedell

(The photo was taken by Sarah Maddox at Snoqualmie Falls, near Seattle WA, presumably on one of her walks.)


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