Look Up; Look Far; Look Wide.
3 ways to take care of your eyes and brain while out for a walk.
Let’s start with a fun fact:
Did you know your eyes are two pieces of your brain, pushed out of the skull during development?
So they’re not just connected to the brain.
They ARE brain.
Okay, another fun fact:
The evolutionary purpose of your eyes was not to “see stuff”.
First and foremost, your eyes are there to guide and inform the rest of the brain that’s locked up inside the darkness of your skull.
Depending on where you direct your eyes, they can have a profound impact on the rest of your nervous system.
And that’s what makes this so powerful:
Just like with your breath, you can take conscious control over your eyes.
So here’s what I’ve been doing when out for walks:
Once you start paying attention to this, it’s remarkable how much of our day we spend looking down.
Probably right now, as you’re reading this, you’re looking down at your phone or at a screen, right?
So consider this:
There are neurons in your brain that regulate eyelid movement depending on your level of alertness:
- When you’re tired, your eyelids droop, and your chin moves down.
- When you’re wide awake and alert, your eyelids remain open, and you’re sitting upright, chin up.
Now, these systems are reciprocal.
By adjusting your eye level and posture, you can impact your level of alertness.
When we spend long periods looking at a screen or book with our eyes and chin down, we activate neurons related to calmness and sleepiness. Having our eyelids slightly closed decreases our level of alertness.