Science has identified 154 different emotional states in humans. Sadness, stress, and anger are just three of them, and they are the most difficult to control. But, actor Chen Kun says we can beat back these bad feelings by walking.
Chen, 43, started the Power to Go charitable program in 2011. On May 29, he unveiled this year’s activity, whose theme is “finding who you are”. Power to Go encourages people to go out and walk in nature, to improve their health and spirits.
For several days each year, a group of selected participants from different careers hike together in remote areas. Past locations include Tibet, Qinghai and Yunnan. Participants are encouraged to escape the daily grind to seek inner peace.
The 2018 trip to Yunnan, for example, had the motto “Each moment is the best version of yourself.” Participants tried to avoid unnecessary talking and walked in silence. “We need to be more honest, and more courageous. We need to follow our own pace in life, not to follow suit,” 30-year-old designer Liu Chang, who participated in last year’s activity, wrote in her diary. “And we need to work hard to practice more and speak less, so that we won’t regret what we are doing.”
These words show the most genuine responses to the power of walking for common people, including its initiator Chen Kun. In 2003, he became famous for his performance in a TV drama, The Story of a Noble Family. This overnight fame led him to panic as he thought his success was just a coincidence. To avoid the pitfalls of fame and fortune, he discovered the benefits of walking alone outside to clear his mind.
Finding that it relieved his stress and anxiety, Chen hoped to pass on his experience to others. “Everyone’s life is random. The only thing you can do is calmly face it, optimistically give thanks, and keep going,” Chen said in a public speech.
(Translator & Editor: Wang Xingwei AND Luo Sitian)