My daily walking ritual for positivity and empowerment

How a daily walking ritual has created the groundwork for more positivity and inner knowing.

I am sure I was unconsciously inspired by something I had listened to or read, but I cannot recall what exactly prompted me to begin this routine at work. Initially created as a way to boost my confidence on day one of a new role, this daily ritual has been etching new grooves of inner confidence and creating unexpected optimism in my life.

When I started working at the Stanford Graduate School of Business in the fall, it was a big transition. I had been working independently for almost a decade and was successfully managing a portfolio career, allowing me the flexibility I needed to care for my kids and take on different projects. But, I was ready for change. I knew that the role was right, yet I worried about its impact on my family, other work and personal priorities. If I am honest, I also felt a little intimidated by the opportunity, the school and the return to work. I often still feel like an Indian-American girl from Oklahoma with something to prove.

Wanting to show up with more confidence on my first day, I set aside more time for my meditation and introspection in the weeks before my start date. Even still, I arrived at campus on that first day with feelings of nervousness.

Wanting to transition into the ‘game day’ version of myself in the walk from my car to my office, I decided to pair affirmations with each step towards the doorway to my new job:

Walking up the parking garage stairs, I affirm:

I am a conduit for good in this world.

I have a blessed life.

I am supported by the Universe.

Out of the garage and onto the campus grounds, I mentally repeated:

I am brilliant. My work creates good in this world.

I am a divine conduit of God.

Across the quad and towards my office, I say:

I know that God is arranging things in my favor.

I am sensational.

I am living the life of my dreams.

I am loved unconditionally.

That 8-minute walk with focused effort created the boost of confidence I needed. I started that first day at work with more grace and grounding.

I have continued that practice since.

Each day I arrive at work, from the moment I step out of my car to when I swipe for access to my office door, I speak words of positivity and kindness to myself. I alter some of my self talk based on what I need. For example, if I had a rough morning with my children, I may change my affirmations to remind myself that I am a good mother and that I am learning through life’s experiences. If I am frustrated by traffic, I affirm to myself I am patient and kind, too.

What has surprised me is how this ritual is changing my thinking and inner dialogue.

It has introduced and is reinforcing a new way to view myself and my life. I am not affirming that I am pretty or perfect or thin or all the things I’m trying (and often struggling) to be as a woman. I am broadening the definition of myself to be…more… and unconditionally so.

Through this ritual, I am changing from the inside out.

It is helping me to view myself differently. I feel purposeful. I notice when the Universe supports me. Now when I am critical of myself, I notice it more quickly. I am beginning to believe that I am a conduit for good in this world, just as I tell myself.

When I let myself believe these good things and begin to live it, that’s when magic can happen. It is our job to remind ourselves of our inherent goodness everyday. Especially when it is hard. Even when we don’t need it. Who knew that our walk to work could be one way to reclaim our true selves.

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