Street Wisdom changed how I interact with streets and understand what is possible with mindfulness and walking in an urban environment. We imagine that we need to venture into deep countryside or a beauty spot abroad to find an environment conducive to reflection and discovery. David Pearl, Street Wisdom’s founder, shows us that this can happen anywhere. More importantly, it can happen where you are, right now. The method had such a significant impact on me that I went to two events in the space of a couple of weeks last autumn. Street Wisdom wizards show you how to slow down and engage with the streets, give you time to wander by yourself and explore a question and then come together to share and make sense of your experience. Like so much of coaching, mindfulness and walking activities, it’s hard to convey the power of this without actually being there yourself.
For me, during my second event, I was surprised to receive a loud and clear answer from the streets for a question I had. It wasn’t the answer I was hoping for or expected but it was exactly what I needed. It made a difference to me over the next few months and was ultimately an exciting and useful experience. I’ve struggled with other mindfulness techniques that can feel like some form of punishment or test. Here participants are able to be silent, talk to others, take photos, stand still or go where your feet take you. During the first event I bought some chips!
The global success of Street Wisdom is testament to the rise and rise of walking as a means to think, reflect, create and connect. I’m reminded of the Taoist saying ‘There is much to do. There is so little time. We must go slowly’. In going slower we can go faster. In walking we can engage with our environment, think better and feel good. There is also an appetite for us to come together, walk together and share our thoughts, ideas and feedback. Street Wisdom wizards, walking coaches and walk facilitators create environments that connect people, communities, and teams in innovative and positive ways.
Street Wisdom is a particularly wonderful movement because it is open, inclusive and available to all anywhere. The Street Wisdom wizards are warm and welcoming. They really enabled a group of strangers to build up trust, comfortably try something new and different, have a great discussion, laugh a lot and be touched by a powerful experience. You can attend events – often free – or practice the method alone. If there is an event near you, do try it!
Discover more about Street Wisdom here.