What I learnt this week: Walking

When I plan a holiday it usually ends up being pretty adventurous.  This time was no exception and I spent 11 days walking the Portuguese Camino.  Let me tell you when you’re trekking up to 30 km’s a day in the blazing sun you think a lot! (You mainly question if you are in fact crazy).

It has been a challenging year for me – personally and professionally.  I wanted time to step away, reflect.  In my mind walking the coast would be a breeze, after all it was only 250 km’s.  I’d already completed the Spanish Camino in 2013 which was 800 km’s.

But I was wrong.

After the first day my ankles were bruised and swollen.  My body ached all over.  Maybe I underestimated the whole walking thing?  But I pushed on- through the pain, through the hunger, through the thirst, through the intense mental anguish.  And even when every step made me want to give up-  I kept going.

Sometimes life is like the Camino.  Bloody tough.  And you don’t want to take another step.  However sometimes you just have to keep going, push through. BUT sometimes you must stop and see where you are.  Otherwise you may get lost…

For me the walk made me look at my life and what I’ve built since moving back from the UK.   And you know what?  I liked what I saw.  I may not be exactly where I want to be right now but I’ve made changes so the things I still want have space to come into my life.

It took me 800km’s walking through Spain to realise I wasn’t happy with where I was.  I had to make changes- which I did.  So when I walked the 250km’s through Portugal I saw that because of the changes I made in 2013 I was now happier.  Yay for me!

But I couldn’t see this until I stepped away and looked at my life.  I got the perspective I needed.  Taking the time to step out of your world and view it with fresh eyes is a beautiful thing.


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