Daily chores and mindfulness

As I was putting away Svadhi’s toys, I watched myself smile at all the toys scattered around the living room. I feel a deep sense of gratitude. That I have child and that she must have enjoyed playing with her toys. As I picked her toys I couldn’t help but imagine what went through her mind when she interacted with each and every toy. I started looking at the toys from her perspective – how she would have played with it, what was her make-believe play, etc. I no longer view it as a dreadful chore but instead used it as an opportunity to count my blessings. And if at all I am rushing, I just leave the toys as it is. No big deal. A sharp contrast of how I used to react before.

Now, when it comes to housework I use the motto clean-as-you-go. I no longer leave the dishes and laundry piling up. When I see dirt, I clean as I go and not leaving it at the very last minute when it starts to become overwhelming. It makes my life so much easier. The cleaning task doesn’t feel as gargantuan as it used to.  I no longer regard it as a chore but an act of love. The ultimate purpose is to provide a clean and cozy abode for my loved ones. This shift in mindset has allowed me to revel in the present moment – liberated me from the feeling of dread which used to weigh me down. I’ve embraced my role as a wife and a mother and relish in the fact that’s one of my main duties is to keep the house clean and to provide my family with home-cooked meals. To be self-sufficient feels liberating.

I no longer feel the overwhelming response I used to trigger within whenever I see things lying around all over the house. I feel a deep sense of gratitude instead. Amazing how a single article could change your perspective overnight. I am happy I stumbled upon Leo Babouta’s Zenhabits. Another blog that I credit for my shift in perception with regards to household chores is the Diary of a Stay at Home Mom.

It wasn’t a great feeling – dread, overwhelmed and fidgety. In place of all that non-presence state, I started embracing the present moment and all the wonders it provides. I no longer drag my feet when it comes to housework. When I am cleaning I enter into a meditative state. I’ve since ceased doing it in a rush and imagine all the things that I could have done instead of the present task at hand. That was why I used to absolutely abhor housework. It became a dreadful and the most boring task. Things will get dusty and dirty. The thing that I failed to realise was to find joy in the doing. To connect with life in the simplest task such as sweeping and doing the dishes. Everything I do now has turned into an opportunity for me to count my blessings. Blessed to have my loved ones with me, to have a roof on our head and clothes to keep us warm.

My absolute favourite is drying out the clothes early in the morning. My soul awakens with the singing of the birds, the morning dew and the crisp morning air. From doing the dishes to putting the folded clothes away, I started practicing mindfulness. Clarity and flow takes place naturally in the state of mindfulness. I started regarding every activity as sacred. It is so freeing to be in this state. When I am at ease with what I do, I notice life flows freely.

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