Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Chores and thinking about them differently

This is something Sandra Dodd shared in her always learning yahoo group.
In response to a post of a Mom having a hard time with her 11 year old daughter.
I'm sure many Moms could read this and find some wisdom in it because household duties are surely something that could bog us down.
But it can be applied to anything you are having a tough time with.

One thing that you can do is change your attitude about housework. Seriously, it is very very possible. I know this because "I" did it. Looking back, seems like an easy switch in thinking; before I did it, seemed completely ridiculous.

It isn't an insignificant change though, because it is part of your everyday lives. So that's MY recommendation to you - that you focus on changing your thinking about housework. It won't take that long if you put some serious energy and commitment into it. Maybe a month for it to really be different.

Here is the big "secret." You think about the REAL reasons you are doing whatever you're doing. Not the negative reasons, the REAL reasons. Do it like you're reciting a prayer or an affirmation or even a mantra to yourself - "I am washing these dishes because because it is so nice to come into the kitchen to make food and find all the dishes clean and ready to use." "I am cleaning the cat litter box because it is so nice to see it all fresh and clean and smelling good and ready for the cat to enjoy." "I am doing this laundry because I just love opening the closet and having all these clothing choices to pick from."
"I'm making this food because I love to nurture and care for my family."

Also, pay really close attention to the nice feelings of doing housework - enjoy your pretty dishes, nice dishtowels, the smell of dish soap, the feeling of the warm water.

It takes self-discipline to do this stuff, at first. You can hang onto the resentment that you're "stuck" doing housework, or you can choose to be grateful that you have the chance to do it for your family.

I didn't get this figured out until my kids were pretty old - older teens. Until then, housework was the one aspect of our lives that wasn't happy. I managed to completely change the way all of us look at housework. Even just today I was doing dishes and thinking how pretty my green bowls are, and I made soup for two of my kids and two of their friends. When I brought it out, I said, happily, "Don't you love these bowls?" It was a carry over from what I'd been thinking while doing the dishes. One of my kids said, "Such little things make my mom so happy." It was said kind of jokingly, but also proudly. And after we ate, they brought the bowls into the kitchen and rinsed them off carefully and, yes, lovingly.

[Pam Sorooshian]

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