Start here

The idea of Walk with Joy is to experience how to see with new eyes.  How to wake up to the world around you and be present.  How are we going to do this?  Spend time, daily, looking at an image of nature to practice how to focus on the detail and really see and experience beauty. Why? because nature has much to teach and when we connect with the beauty outside we connect with the beauty within.  This is the road of stillness, freedom and happiness where you will Walk with Joy.

If you are anything like me you want to be expert in the first 5 minutes.  Well, the best way to achieve that is to practice little and often, daily in fact, to get into the swing of looking in a different more focused way.  This is not something you learn, it’s something you do.  It will, with time, become perfectly natural and you will start to see(and be) without thinking – without engaging your mind, which is the point.    Your whole awareness will open up as the world presents itself to you.

What are you waiting for? jump in – abandon any limiting thoughts about not being able to keep it up, this isn’t going to work or what a pointless exercise etc etc etc.  Just do it, enjoy it and start now.

First we need to disengage your mind. All spiritual disciplines acknowledge that to calm the mind we need to regulate the breath.  Easy.  So.

To prepare yourself for gazing at the daily picture.  Here is  short centering and breathing exercise.

First, sit down, preferably in a chair which supports your back upright.

Put your feet flat on the floor directly below your knees.  Rock from side to side to locate your ‘sitting bones’ beneath your buttocks.

Close your eyes.  Imagine a thread coming from the top of your head gently lifting up your spine.

Drop your shoulders and allow your head to fall forward slightly.

Breathe out completely emptying your lungs.

Breathe in from your abdomen, counting slowly until your lungs are filled – 3 or 4 should do it – hold it for a couple of seconds then –

Exhale slowly, counting out to the same number.

Breathe in and out twice more.

If thoughts come into your head, just let them float on by.

If you want to continue the breathing exercise for longer you could set a timer for 1-2 minutes -otherwise open your eyes and gaze at the picture. Allow yourself 2 minutes to start with and progress to 5 over the next few days.

Avoid naming anything – that engages the judgemental mind and the ego – the ‘small’ self.  This practice is about connecting with your big ‘true’ self.

Allow yourself to become part of the image, to rest within it.

Let your eyes to wander slowly within the image.  See what catches your attention and connect with it. Study the detail, enjoy it, as if your were going to draw what you have seen or describe it in detail to someone else. Engage with your own wonder, imagine looking at the image as if you are a child.

If the business of your day starts to interfere, how much longer is this going to take, why am I wasting my time doing this or what I am going to cook tonight?, just acknowledge the thoughts and let them float away.  Fr. Thomas Keating suggests placing them on boats floating past on a stream before you.  When the time is up. Just be. Sense and stay with how you are feeling.

Before you leave, scroll down and read the awareness exercise for that day – something to take with you, to remind you to stop and be in the moment through the rest of your day.  Experience everything around you.  See the beauty and connect with it.  See how it changes your day.

Let me know and see you tomorrow.

With love,  Joy

77 Responses to Start here

  1. Sharron Lister says:

    My growing feeling over recent years is that our world is in chaos and that mans relationship with the Earth is inbalanced. To find such peaceful and connecting prose and beautiful images of nature is inspiring and gives me hope that there are others who want to do something to help the world strive for a new way of living. Thank you for this and I look forward to spending time with you every day and to learn from our journey.

  2. ivan en mie says:

    Nice pics, Joy, I will make time for the breathing exercise, it can only do me good …

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      • walkwithjoy says:

        Dear Andreas,

        I’m glad you found what I said helpful – I write what feels right at the time – its great when people resonate with what is written.

        All the best, Joy

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    • walkwithjoy says:

      Thankyou,I am new at this so its great that you enjoy what I am posting. We need to spread the word as much as possible, I do have a book out recently – 28 days to see Nature in a new way and gain perspective on your life, its called Too Busy To Live Your Life? and is available from me @ £12.95 plus £2.00 postage and packing. Simply send a cheque and your address and I will forward by return.

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    • walkwithjoy says:

      Thanks for your positive feedback re walkwithjoy, Im sorry I don’t know of any discussion boards but we could set one up here…..if you know how let me know. It was in my original plan to develop a community of like minded people.

      Best, Joy

  21. walkwithjoy says:

    Thankyou for your feedback, keep coming back, we are here everyday……

    Yours Joy

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    • walkwithjoy says:

      Dear Anthony,

      Thankyou for taking the trouble to comment, Im so glad you like it, there’s a new blog every day – how about you sign up to the subscription box – doesn’t cost anything.
      All the best, Joy

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    • walkwithjoy says:

      Thankyou so much for your encouragement – it is such a thrill when people enjoy what I have put together and take the time to respond. Keep coming back – all the best, Joy

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    • walkwithjoy says:

      Dear Maida,

      Thankyou so much for your comment – I so passionately want to share what I have experienced, it’s truly a joy when people respond so positively.

      Walk with us, Joy

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  36. You could certainly see your enthusiasm within the work you write. The arena hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart.

    • walkwithjoy says:

      Thanks, I am very passionate about the power of Nature and hoping to encourage others to explore contemplation. I really appreciate your comments, pass on the good words. Joy

  37. Clarenbeek, Martin says:

    Nice meeting you Joy! Please suscribe me.Martin

    • walkwithjoy says:

      And you Martin, all you need to do is put your email address into the box on the righthand side of the page – I don’t think I can do it for you……
      enjoy and keep in touch. all best, Joy

  38. Thanks a ton for this – love the info and agree with your perspective. However many others will not, so thanks for speaking up. Nice blog, well done!

    • walkwithjoy says:

      Dear Yvonne,

      Thanks for taking the trouble to comment – I speak from the heart when I write, some people will hear, others will not. It’s good when people do and respond like you have.

      Keep coming back, all the best, Joy

  39. Jacques from Eaton Sq says:

    Dear Joy,

    You are very clever to put this website together. It looks like it must have been done by experts and cost a fortune ! That’s the technical functionality side.

    The actual theme and content is lovely. No chanting and no prayers! Nothing against either but sometimes when I walk in the woods or the fields or sit fishing for bass on the rocks, I just want an ’empty mind’. I loved your photos which I gather you take yourself? Your message is simple and calming. As for your book …28 days. A lunar cycle. I am Cancerian and allegedly ruled by it! I am ruled by a few other things too ! Anyway, just wanted to add my praise, adulation and eulogising to your legion of fan’s comments !

    • walkwithjoy says:

      Dear Jacques,

      I’m so touched by your comment, thank you so much – please spread the word to whoever you know who may enjoy it too.

      Together we can change the world.

  40. Maria says:

    I love this I am willing to look and be nourished every day.
    Thank you

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