Monday, July 21, 2014

Finding Joy in Housework

As a young mom it was hard to find joy in so much housework until someone shared with me and it changed my attitude. I'm doing it for my loved ones as an act of love and service which is the highest calling you can have. I pray for my family as I do my work around the house. I view "home care" as a way of loving myself, taking joy in my life, my family, and expressing myself, and finding contentment in my home. I've been doing it for over 20 years with grace and love.

Tips to make housework more enjoyable:

I make notes to remind me of my goals and check them off when completed.

I make it into a game by joining challenges. A few I've done over the years are: 8 Weeks to a Less Cluttered Home, Purge 7 Things per Day, Homemaking 101, 40 Bags in 40 Days, and the Minimalist game.

I try to treat myself with one interesting activity per annoying activity. Make cookies while cleaning the kitchen. Watch a movie while folding laundry. Take a nice shower or bath then clean up the bathroom.

I treat myself to something nice like a home mani/pedi, a cup of tea, reading a good book or ice cream.

I love to do 15 minute challenges to see how much I can accomplish in a small amount of time. i set a timer for 15 or 20 minute and just go.  This way you have an end in sight and it doesn't sound like a lot but doing so daily adds up a lot. Plus sometimes when the timer is up you just keep going and don't mind it

I play instead. When I need to dust I put on music and "dance" when I need to vacuum I do the same.

I do my workout while cleaning such as Squats to pick things up, Lunges to vacuum, Sit-ups in between rooms.

I like to listen to audio books from the library for pleasure or spiritual uplifting. I like comedies, books that teach me about a subject I'm interested, and sometimes self-help books. When listening, I hardly even notice I'm cleaning.

Positive verbal mantras- whenever I start to think negatively, I say out loud a positive. This shouldn't be a counter argument with yourself. It should be completely different. So if you start thinking what's the point?, don't try to counter with the point, go to your chosen positive mantra. This could be simply "it's a beautiful day to be alive." Or, "I am a strong, capable woman." "My life is full of blessings." You get the picture. Just say anything positive out loud and continue. An important thing to know is that the mind can handle only so many inputs at once. And it will choose positive inputs over the negative if given the choice.

Meditate while doing the dishes paying attention to it…notice the smell of the dish soap, the heat of the water, really think about what is this job we call 'doing the dishes' and so on…it helps me  to feel  relaxed and peaceful with what I’m doing instead of just trying to get it done. If you're open to meditation, I highly recommend trying it.

Every Spring to get our outdoor chores and yard summer ready the whole family pitches in. I write up a list the day or so before and we all attack it. It takes a few hours, but it's nice and clean when we finish. We rake, pickup sticks, mow, plant flowers, till and plant our vegetable garden, set up the lawn furniture, paint, clean the sidewalks and porches.

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