I think the number one bête noire that many people have when it comes to household chores is the dreaded dishwashing. I remember a blogger friend sharing how she had to wash the dishes on a day that her maid didn’t turn up. So to reward herself, she had a martini after this chore!! Granted that none of us wants to end our days scrubbing dishes. But could you, like me, realize the joy of dishwashing? Could dishwashing be a chance to practice mindfulness?
The Joy of Dishwashing
How can there be any joy in dishwashing, you wonder. The trick is in not letting the dishes pile up. So I wash as I cook. On the rare days, I do allow them to pile up, I can see why it would not be fun. We’re also particular not to let any dishes pile up overnight no matter how late it is. The thought of getting up to a sink full of dirty dishes is not something we relish.
Funnily, I’ve always enjoyed dishwashing. I think it’s a family ‘weakness’! When we had large gatherings of the extended family, some of my aunts and I would try to outdo each other in reaching the sink first.
Communal dishwashing – one person cleans the plates, another person rinses and a third wipes the plates – can be fun too.
I love to be alone when I’m washing dishes. I find it a great time to think, to imagine and yes, I’ve been known to sing while doing the dishes. I get a lot of creative ideas while washing the dishes (happens in the shower too!)
The best time to plan a book is while you’re doing the dishes.Agatha Christie
Even such mundane things as an empty sink and clean can give us a sense of satisfaction.
“We can be present in any moment of life, even when we’re busy washing the dishes. Rather than put off those household chores, embrace them as another opportunity to nurture and transform the mind.”– Andy Puddicombe, co-founder of the meditation app Headspace.
A new study published in the journal Mindfulness says that washing dishes can be a form of meditation, promoting a positive state of attention on the emotions and thoughts in the present moment.
We do the dishes not only in order to have clean dishes, we also do the dishes just to do the dishes, to live fully in each moment while washing them, and to be truly in touch with life.Thich Nhat Hanh
Also, when we employ an attitude of gratitude while doing the dishes, it brings us joy. Give thanks that you and your family have food – something no one can take for granted, especially in these times.
There’s something to be said for taking joy in everyday chores and making them meaningful and fun!
Do you experience joy when you wash dishes?