NEWS

Tik Tok's Trendy "Hot Girl Walk" Might Be Great For Your Mental Health

drawing of a girl walking in her neighborhood with headphones

Verywell / Adriana Sanchez

Key Takeaways

  • A popular TikTok fad known as "the hot girl walk" promotes daily walking with gratitude, self-love, and goal-setting.
  • Part of the hot girl walk is dealing with negative thoughts and trying to maintain that positive energy for the rest of the day.
  • Experts agree that walking is the perfect activity to start incorporating mindfulness into your life.


Many people upped their walking quota during the COVID-19 pandemic, with so many other activities ruled out due to lockdown restrictions. The benefits of walking are well-known—from improved cardiovascular fitness to stronger bones and muscles. 

"Walking daily helps circulate the blood flow to your brain and the rest of your body and gives you a boost of energy," says Berman Psychotherapy clinician Kylie O'Driscoll, LAMFT. "Plus, being in nature has benefits including a concept called forest bathing, which is linked to decreased stress."

But there's regular walking, and then there's "hot girl walking." It’s an exercise regimen that's causing a stir on social media, thanks to 22-year-old TikToker Mia (@exactlyliketheothergirls). She describes herself as "highly perfectionist and competitive," and explains on TikTok how other fitness challenges had put her in a bad place.

Mia even has rules for the hot girl walk: 

  • Think about what you’re grateful for.
  • Think through your goals and the steps needed to achieve them (she adds that the aim here isn't to picture the goal itself, but to picture the person you'll be once you achieve that goal).
  • Continuously remind yourself of your personal beauty.

Kylie O'Driscoll, LAMFT

Walking daily helps circulate the blood flow to your brain and the rest of your body and gives you a boost of energy.

— Kylie O'Driscoll, LAMFT

Basically, it’s making time for daily exercise and movement, but with a crucial added ingredient—a healthy dose of self-love. Walking lends itself to thinking, and those thoughts might not always be positive.

Mia has a simple solution: pop on your headphones, crank up the volume on your playlist, and enjoy your favorite song. (If you need help with that, Mia has her own hot girl walk playlist on Spotify for everyone to enjoy.)

As far as requirements go, that’s pretty much all you need to do for your hot girl walk. There’s no minimum distance requirement (Mia started off walking four miles) and the most important thing is to continue embracing positive energy long after the end of the walk.

Walking and Mental Health

As Mia points out, the hot girl walk is just as much an exercise for the mind as it is for the body. O'Driscoll agrees that incorporating movement and exercise into your daily routine is a great way to help establish a more mindful outlook on life.

Kylie O'Driscoll, LAMFT

During these moments of movement, take a second to realize how your body feels, or what smells you may be picking up on your walk. These are ways you can start to make mindfulness a habit.

— Kylie O'Driscoll, LAMFT

“Mindfulness can be looked at through a holistic lens, meaning that you can practice skills in the mind, but it’s also important to utilize your body as well,” O’Driscoll explains. And a walk is the perfect place to start (although you can do a more intense activity if you'd like). 

“During these moments of movement, take a second to realize how your body feels, or what smells you may be picking up on your walk. These are ways you can start to make mindfulness a habit,” says O’Driscoll.

“Giving yourself some alone time while being out on a walk can foster a sense of peace and comfort with yourself and can be a great way to practice self-acceptance,” O’Driscoll adds.

Managing Negative Thoughts

If negative thoughts threaten to interfere with your hot girl walk positivity, don’t worry.

“Our minds are constantly filtering thoughts, which means there will more than likely be times when negative thoughts creep in,” O’Driscoll says.

If you’re out on a walk and a negative thought comes up, she advises acknowledging it rather than trying to avoid it, which often gives that thought power and allows it to grow and take up more space in your mind.

“Acknowledging the thought doesn’t mean accepting it,” O’Driscoll explains. “You can allow the thought to come into your mind and say to yourself that in this moment you are choosing to release that thought from your mind, like a leaf floating down a river.” 

How Mia deals with negative thoughts is simple: "Remember you're hot. There's no need to think negatively about yourself."

What This Means For You

The hot girl walk is a TikTok trend that most of us can easily incorporate into our daily routines. It's not just checking the fitness box—it's an opportunity to practice self-compassion and mindfulness by learning how to manage negative thoughts.

Don't let the name put you off—this trend isn't about your physical appearance. It's all about building up your confidence by being your own biggest cheerleader.

By Claire Gillespie
Claire Gillespie is a freelance writer specializing in mental health. She’s written for The Washington Post, Vice, Health, Women’s Health, SELF, The Huffington Post, and many more.