In today’s world moves at a fast-forward pace is not something surprising. We are constantly pressing for time, rushing through the day, honking through the evening traffic until finally we can breathe a sigh of relief at the first glimpse of home. Ironically, that sigh of relief triggers off the opposite reaction in the members at home. Growling tummy need to be fed, dirty clothes need to be washed, clothes to be ironed and endless list goes on. No matter how hard we try, we are never fully prepared for the barrage of daily tasks that seem to pile on and on, leaving no time for ourselves much less about exercising.
Yoga says, “Every action has got a mental and physical approach to it.” However, when things become mechanical over a period, it gets boring and happiness levels drop in particularly, household chores. You must sweep the same floor, with the same broom and in the same way. Similarly, washing clothes and ironing. Suppose you want to do some ironing of clothes, you take the iron and its board, on the switch, waiting for it to get heated and start moving it up and down. Considering the mental aspect, if I ask you to recall how did you iron or how long did you waited for it to be heated up, you will not be able to say. It is registered in our brain systems and we would not have thought of ways to improvise it.
The trick is to apply the positive logic to one’s everyday tasks whereby “When you truly enjoy doing something, it is never a chore”. And this is where yoga comes in – just add a panache of yoga and relaxation techniques to your daily household chores which can change your perspective and lift your happiness level.
For example, wiping the desk can be given a yogic element simply by paying attention to posture, standing rigidly upright and allowing the mind to focus only on the steady rhythm of the movement. Similarly, reaching for the top part of the glass panel for cleaning can be transformed into a relaxing extension by paying attention to our pectoralis major, deltoid, latissimus dorsi, subscapularis, supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor and major and coracobrachialis which these are a group of muscle working on the moving arms.
All one must do is find a task that takes half an hour or so and cultivate total awareness of the body while performing these activities.
Breathing deeply and diaphragmatically is a good place to start. For example, while ironing, you may become aware that you are squeezing your neck and compressing your spine while bending toward your iron. You can extend your feet and place them firmly on the ground and it is better to bend from the hips rather than the back. Soon, you will get into the flow of ironing, breathing deeply, hips bending a little as you flex and extended the time of ironing will pass without you even realizing it.
Once you learn to cultivate total awareness of the body, it is easy to apply it to other areas of action in life, such as climbing the stairs or even walking. As you start applying the principles of yoga to everyday aspects of your life, you will stop thinking of your daily tasks as chores. More importantly, you will have greater positive energy that will help your mind and physical to face everyday life challenges.