Looking for a way to expand your mindfulness practice? Try washing dishes! Mindfulness just means staying in the present moment. No, that doesn’t include thinking about your next meal, not having paid your taxes yet, or that vacation you took to Hawaii last week. Mindfulness means staying present and paying attention to right now… I mean now… I mean now!
Mindfulness can be applied to every aspect of your life, but for starters, washing dishes is a good jumping off point. How does this translate? Pay attention to the task in front of you. Make sure you clean every nook and cranny of every single dish. Feel the warmth of the water, and the roughness of the scouring pad on your fingers. Line up the dishes in a beautiful row on the drying rack, doing the very best job you can. Pay close attention to every single detail. Just pay attention to now.
The more we start being mindful in our every day lives the more we will experience the benefits. We start to feel less stressed, more relaxed, more self-confident, more vibrant, and we start to look forward to each day. This happens because mindfulness cures fear and stress caused by fear. Fear of what people might think of you… fear that the job won’t get done, the bills won’t get paid, the dishes won’t get washed, or that there are too many dishes to do and you will miss your favorite T.V. show!
Mindfulness cures fear because the root cause of fear lies in our imagination. Fear relies on a story we tell ourselves and that story can be changed or remain untold. Furthermore, the only way we can tell a story is if we leave the present moment and engage our imagination; either we imagine the future or re-imagine the past. This means that the present moment is the only moment that ever exists; it is never scary and it is comforting almost all of the time. Washing the dishes can actually become a very pleasant experience, but its not about the plate, its about the moment!