Saturday: Take a walk
“We should take wandering outdoor walks, so that the mind might be nourished and refreshed by the open air and deep breathing.”
— Seneca, “On Tranquility of Mind,” 17.8
In a notoriously loud city like Rome, it was impossible to get much peace and quiet. The noise of wagons, the shouting of vendors, and the hammering of blacksmiths all filled the streets with piercing auditory violence. So philosophers went on a lot of walks — to get where they needed to go, to clear their heads, and to get fresh air.
Throughout the ages, philosophers, writers, poets, and thinkers have found that walking offers the additional benefit of time and space for better work. As Nietzsche would later say: “It is only ideas gained from walking that have any worth.”
Today, make sure you take a walk. And in the future, when you get stressed or overwhelmed, take a walk. When you have a tough problem to solve or a decision to make, take a walk. When you want to be creative, take a walk. When you need to get some air, take a walk. When you have a phone call to make, take a walk. When you need some exercise, take a long walk. When you have a meeting or a friend over, take a walk together.
Nourish yourself and your mind and solve problems along the way.