Finding time for calm in the chaotic world of being a mum can undoubtedly be tough.
Often with an already unrealistic to-do list (or lists as is usually the case) the idea of adding ‘meditate to find calm’ to it just seems a bit ludicrous, and a tad self-indulgent even.
I’ve read the articles about how great meditation is, I crave it and have even set up my own sacred chill out space for it, and yet I still get to the end of many days and realise I didn’t make the time for it.
The thing is I know how great I feel when I have made the time for me, how much more centred I feel, grounded, focused and calmer.
So I decided I had to start finding ways to make that happen more often, without letting an apparent lack of time prevent me from accessing that elusive calm in the chaos of running a business from home and having a two and a five year old.
Enter mindfulness. Mindfulness is a form of meditation and the great thing about it is that it can be done anywhere, anytime, doing anything. It’s about being present in the moment and bringing awareness to everything that is happening right now.
So here’s a technique that I use and have found immensely useful in helping me find calm amidst the chaos. It’s super simple and the technique can be applied to any task, start small and then add more routine tasks and habits as you go. Soon enough chaos will be a thing of the past!
A new and useful way to approach the washing up:
1. Stand at the sink and take a deep breath, notice the rise and fall of your chest and abdomen as you inhale and exhale. Start to become aware of your whole body, just noticing your bodily sensations, not judging them, just noticing.
2. What can you hear? What can you smell? What can you see? What can you feel? Again no judgment, no wrongs or rights just what is happening right now.
3. Turn on the tap, notice what you hear as the water gushes out of the tap, feel the water, what does it feel like on your skin, contemplate the journey that water has made to get to you right now. Watch the bubbles appear as the water hits the detergent. Notice the temperature of the water, observe the dirt coming off the dishes and how they sparkle when clean.
4. Just breathe, just notice, just be completely immersed in your senses. When you do this you’ll begin to realise that you’ve found calm, because there isn’t space for all the thoughts of what’s for dinner etc, there is just the space to be here right now as a human being, not a human doing.
I’m about to be bold and suggest you may start to actually enjoy the washing up now!!
A mini-break from the thought stream in your head, an invitation and opportunity to be present and aware. Stop worrying about future occurrences that may happen, or cringing about things in the past, and stay in the present for a short period of time.
An invitation to make an every day task a chance to practice mindfulness and gratitude, a chance to find a little piece of calm, pleasure and joy in a seemingly mundane activity are all reasons to really think how you can reclaim some valuable time back for yourself - even if it does mean doing the washing up more frequently!
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Take a moment to chill out in one of Jocasta's chillout chairs.