Yes, you might roll your eyes or wrinkle your nose or simply run away if your mom asks you to wash the kitchen dishes. Now, c’mon, if you are a teenager, you’d rather fight with a dragon than dirtying your hands by scrubbing the soiled plates with soapy water! Wouldn’t you?
However, you might actually fall in love with this mundane chore by reading the next line: The world’s richest billionaires – Bill Gates of Microsoft and Jeff Bezos of Amazon – take care of their family’s dirty plates and glasses every night.
Though this sounds like a paradox, it’s the beautiful truth. The reason: they simply enjoy it. Doing their own dishes, they say, is an escape from the stress which escalates their contentment. And not just these billionaires; world-famous writer, Agatha Christie, had been quoted as saying that the best time to get ideas is while doing the dishes.
Zeroing in on further, research by the Florida State of University showed this to be an archetypal example of ‘mindfulness’. By savouring the warm water and feeling the soft, soapy froth, you are better able to be in the present moment. The simple act of washing your dishes or making your bed or doing any small homely chores reduces your stress levels and injects happiness.
Another research by the University of California, Santa Barbara, showed that doing activities that require less-mind-exertion allow your mind to wander tranquility to creative zones and that is where ingenious ideas come up. A study by the University of Central Lancashire elucidated that people who did ‘mundane’ tasks like copying numbers from a phone directory, were able to think more ‘creatively’ afterward.
Taking the above anatomy further, this principle can be called as “Marvels from Mundane”. When you wake up in the morning, you can simply commit yourself to doing mundane tasks first: smoothen your bed, arrange your desk or wardrobe or do the dishes. These activities will actually tune in your mind to creative zones and will help you take much better decisions, work creatively and achieve miraculous results. The same analogy applies before you go to sleep or at the office.
Well, having said this, I am going to do my own dishes from now onwards. It’ll not only make me creative but will also make my mom happy! What about you?