The lockdown has restricted most of us to stay indoors without the assistance of our domestic helps. For many of us, this is one of the first and rare times that we have had to do the most basic of chores through our own physical effort. No strategy or vision statement works here and your designation has no importance.
This article elucidates some life lessons that some of these household chores have taught me.
On day one, I dusted the hell out of my house and every piece of furniture, Feng-shui, trophy and cabinet sparkled like a diamond. I missed to dust for two days after that and everything looked like an abandoned museum. It barely matters if I do the best ‘dusting’ in the world – what matters is I do it every single day.
Life lesson: The consistency of regular efforts matters more than the magnitude of a single effort.
When I got done with my first brooming gig and collapsed on the couch, my mom asked me:
“Did you work on the corners as well?”
I was not sure, but I replied with some confidence “Of course mom”
Mom asked me to follow her and showed me all the accumulated debris in the corners. I realised that I had “cut corners” and missed on most of the dirt. It helped me create my own version of the Pareto principle – 80% dirt lies in the 20% corners.
Also, initially when I started brooming, I did it with an erect back and the broad edge of the broom barely touched the floor. I understood it took a lot of time and barely cleaned anything. I had to bend, get closer to ground to sweep the floor with the wide angle of the broom.
1. It doesn’t matter if you do 80% of the work by cutting corners – you may have missed the most critical portions
2. Ego and an erect back will not let you understand the reality. You will need to bend with humility and get closer to the ground.
Picking up debris
After brooming when I picked up the debris on the dirt-pan, I noticed that it was not a lot – just one ball and perhaps weighed two or three grams.
Life lesson: Sometimes, our problems are not big – they are scattered. When we take a macro view of them – things will look easier.
Folding the blanket
The blanket was larger than my hand-span and I was finding it impossible to fold, until I discovered the four corners. Then, it felt like a cake-walk
Life lesson: For any problem, no matter how big, find those critical points from where you can begin to solve it. Large problems often have simple solutions.
When I ventured to wipe the floor of my house, the house felt much larger than I thought it was. Took me more than an hour to wipe the whole god-damn floor!
Life lesson: While you strive for what you want, look around you and feel gratitude for what you already have.
The dishes in which I ate fruit or had water were super easy to clean. However, the dishes in which I had more greasy food took more time to wash. I realised how difficult it must be for my body to clean this grease when I eat this kind of food.
Life lesson: Eat healthier – it is better for your body and for the dishes.
Finally, when I do all of the above and sit down to relax, some sly piece of debris emerges out of nowhere to haunt me.
Life lesson: Strive for perfection, although you may have to settle for excellence.
Author: Mudit Yadav
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