My daughter and I took my car through the car wash. She has the ability to make the most mundane activity into a playful, exciting experience. When my girls were young one of the greatest gifts I received as a mom was permission to be totally childlike. Somewhere along the way, I lost some of that playfulness, until recent years. I let go giving a S@!% what others think about me and have not only regained this playfulness, but took it to a whole new level. One of the benefits of wisdom… or is it age?
This is what happened in the carwash: I watched the water, noticed the sounds from the water, the scrubbers, and blowers. Some were loud and some pulsing, others soft like a light rain. I looked at the soapy bubbles the colors, and textures. I laughed with my daughter at the wonder of it all.
I would have missed all of that if I was on my cellphone, thinking about what I had to do after the car wash, or trying to just “get my errand over with.” This mundane experience reminds me that everything we do is part of our day. How we interact with what we do is what uplifts us and determines how our day goes.
This is the essence of mindfulness meditation. Being where your feet are planted. Noticing, being aware of it all without judgment.
You might be thinking; “But Ellen, this is multi-tasking. I will get dizzy.” Ah, that is where we get caught up. You do not need to get distracted by one or the other because it is all part of the present experience. It is not one or the other, but allowing it all to be in any given moment.
See if you can notice:
• What do I see?
• What do I hear?
• What do I smell?
• What do I feel?
This is simply awareness of what is going on in any given moment. Your mind will take you away from this into the future or past. All you need to do is notice you are thinking and come back to the moment by engaging your senses.
Start with a daily task. A bath, a shower, the market, dry cleaner, or of course the awesome car wash.
Let me know how it went and don’t forget to have some fun with this. The practice of meditation does not have to be all “serious” and “zen.”
Why not approach this as a child would–full of wonder and play. If you have trouble, I am happy to teach you how. After all, I learned from the best–my kids, (and a ton of training)!