Turn a dreaded household chore into a “me time” activity with these tips and tricks.
If you think mindfulness is just for yogis, think again. In a fast-paced society like Singapore, where everybody is constantly struggling to achieve an ideal work-life balance, practicing mindfulness is a useful technique to counter life’s daily stresses. But instead of trying to carve out precious time from your busy schedule to do this, incorporate this into your daily tasks instead.
After all, this big word – mindfulness – simply means paying full attention to the task at hand, rather than allowing your mind to wander to past actions or future plans. In fact, a regular household chore like vacuuming is the perfect opportunity to practice being mindful. You have to get the task done anyway, so why not turn it into something that is, we daresay, enjoyable?
Start with a “ritual”
Ready yourself to be mindful while vacuuming with a few preparatory steps. Turn on your favourite Spotify playlist and perhaps even burn some essential oils (peppermint or orange are great energizing scents) to get in the mood. Before you plunge into the task itself, assemble your vacuum cleaner, its necessary attachments and have other tools like a good quality cleaning cloth at the ready. Now, you are good to go!
Don’t rush through it
It may seem counterintuitive, but rushing through a chore can make it feel even more unpleasant than it actually is. Instead, focus entirely on what you are doing, using your senses to detect the areas in your house which needs your vacuum’s attention. Do your eyes spot hard-to-reach corners that are collecting dust? Is your nose sniffing out musty upholstery or cushions that have accumulated dirt and pet dander? Soon it might even seem more like a game than a task to be checked off a list.
Pay attention to yourself
Notice how your body moves as you are vacuuming. You might start off clumsily, bumping your arms and legs into furniture and getting the vacuum cleaner stuck around corners. But with time and attention, your body will develop muscle memory and you will learn to navigate your vacuum through your home smoothly and efficiently, almost like you have perfected a tricky dance. Now, you’re in the flow.
Appreciate your equipment
You don’t have to go all tech-head on your vacuum cleaner, but as you are vacuuming, take the time to appreciate its high-tech capabilities in keeping your home free of dirt and grime. Notice too how its ergonomic design fits your hand perfectly and how it is carefully constructed to be as light as possible so you can vacuum with ease. That’s certainly something to be grateful for.
Feel your stress melt away
After you have mindfully put your vacuum cleaner away until the next time it is to be used, take a moment to enjoy your freshly cleaned home. Breathe in the dust-free air to enjoy its health benefits and notice how you feel less stressed now that you have completed an essential chore.
Just like that, a vacuum cleaning session has become a mindfulness practice. Are you looking forward to the next time you’re scheduled to vacuum your home yet?
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