Cleaning my House: A Lesson in Trust and Honouring

by Johanna Fredericks, Bachelor of Education, Perth WA

A couple of days ago, it was Friday. On a Friday evening after work my routine has been doing the food shopping, washing the clothes and cleaning my house. I usually take my time with this, but sometimes I rush it or have a level of drive behind it because I just want to get it all done. Although there is a level of care behind my past actions, I realised I had a little bit of a rulebook approach when it came to getting through all my cleaning chores. This really means that even though I may have done things gently, I haven’t been completely listening to my body every Friday evening.

I like our house to be clean, to have things in their special place and to be organised with the many tasks that just have to be done. This helps me to not end up feeling overwhelmed with my list of chores, plus it feels nice to be in a clean and organised space.

Some of my thinking/mentality around doing the chores was along the lines of…

“I need to get this done – so I can have the weekend without cleaning chores”.

“If my house is clean, it’s one less thing to worry about”.

“If I get my jobs out of the way, I am free to concentrate on other things that a weekend may bring”.

I began to question the way of thinking that I had adopted and the beliefs I had around chores and cleaning my house… who would have thought that we could have so many ideals and beliefs about cleaning?

Then last week I chose to do my chores a little differently… I felt to do the clothes washing on the Thursday after work, leaving less chores for Friday. I left work a little later and actually questioned if I should do everything on the Friday afternoon. As I drove home from the school I felt pretty awesome and decided to strut my stuff around the supermarket while I did my grocery shopping. I decided that I would see how I felt about the rest of the house cleaning chores after the shopping was done.

When I left the shop it was 6.30pm. I checked in with my body and I felt that doing the other chores would be stretching it, as I was starting to feel a little tired. 

I realised that the world was not going to fall apart if I didn’t clean my house on the usual day in the usual way.

At this point I didn’t really know when I was going to fit my chores in with everything else I had to do on the weekend, but I knew that I did not want to rush the cleaning and… I wanted to honour what my body was telling me.

It just so happened that a little moment early Saturday morning presented itself, so I began to clean the kitchen cupboards. I thought I was going to do my whole house cleaning routine but at a more honouring pace, when a little sentence popped into my head…

“Slow down – you have to do it, so you might as well enjoy it!”

This sentence made me think: Enjoy It?… Why not?! What if I just did the dusting and wiping now? What if I cleaned tenderly and allowed myself to feel my tenderness while I was cleaning? The tenderness that I know I have in my touch. What if I used the lovely gift of ‘self talk’, appreciating myself as I clean with how I am cleaning, and how lovely I am re-arranging the things on the tabletops?

This took a huge pressure off me because I was no longer putting an expectation on myself that would cause me to potentially put my body into an outcome based driven-ness. I said to myself that I was going to wipe all the surfaces and mirrors in each room tenderly, then replace everything lovingly. This felt amazing; each movement and moment felt complete within itself because I was in connection with myself as I moved… I was aware of what my body was doing and how it was moving as I was cleaning my house. I completely honoured myself and enjoyed what I was doing. The feeling of each room was even more amazing after I had cleaned it with this level of care. I could see and feel the care and tenderness I had left behind in each room from my loving touch.

It didn’t matter that I had chosen to leave the hoovering and mopping to another time… what I had done was complete and clean.

A moment mid-Saturday presented itself for me to hoover, and then I mopped in the evening. My house cleaning chores no longer felt like chores but lovely little moments where I was able to spread my loveliness around our home.

Cleaning my house this weekend has helped me to further chip away at some small but still false beliefs and ideals I had around thinking that I had to get through in a task orientated way without any consideration to how I felt: some Fridays I had the energy to do all the cleaning chores but others I did not. These beliefs and ideals were in-truth stopping me from trusting and honouring myself and my body completely as the gorgeous and tender woman that I am.

I have felt a deeper level of appreciation in my ability to Trust… trust my body, trust my feelings, trust myself and the rest (including cleaning my house!), will fall into place.

Inspired by the work of Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine

357 thoughts on “Cleaning my House: A Lesson in Trust and Honouring

  1. I have felt a deeper level of appreciation in my ability to Trust… trust my body, trust my feelings, trust myself and the rest (including cleaning my house!), will fall into place. Trust is such an important quality to develop and deepen especially trusting our feelings. And with regards to house cleaning, I love tidy and organised spaces, and always clean up after meals, as it does not feel good to leave a mess for someone else. And what is great, I just get an impulse that today I need to clean out my cupboards, and so I do as I honour what I am feeling which makes it such a pleasure to do in that moment.

  2. I am following the impulses from my body and as I do, the body provides even more and is a confirmation of my daily choices in deepening my self-care and choosing to live a simple life through The Way of The Livingness presented by Serge Benhyon and Universal Medicine.

  3. Thank you Johanna. This blog came to visit me today and I knew that there was a direct message for me in here. I find that doing chores makes me feel like a ‘good’ person. Ticking everything off the list regardless of the energy I have used to ‘make it happen’ how lovely to be reminded that we can choose to enjoy ourselves while we clean and appreciate the fact that we are just as lovely whether we ‘get the job done’ or not.

  4. When we see life as a task we must do and tick off, wow we are already lost because we embark without the care, the pleasure and joy we are designed to naturally know. So of course things will become hard, difficult and something we would rather put off – no wonder we push through to get to something we would rather do. I’m feeling what you present Johanna applies to all of life. With connection, there is fun, joy and warmth like the sun in my heart; but without connection it doesn’t matter what it is, it just becomes another item on a list.

  5. I remember when I started to find exactly the same thing, that even though I was doing things gently (which does feel amazing) if I wasn’t doing them in their natural timing they didn’t feel right and my body ended up not feeling. Then I have to override my body just to get the job done and tick it off my list. Over and over I find that what seems like the perfect time in my head is not the perfect time for my body. When I trust that, I always find the perfect time does appear when I least expect it.

  6. I loved what you discovered about doing the cleaning on Friday so you could have the weekend free. I can relate to that and for me it comes with the mentality of going hard to get something done so I can reward myself with time off. This is how most of us work, running around in stress and busyness at work, justifying working in this way, as we can rest when we get home. But this turns home into recuperation/recovery time rather than time to enjoy and connect with family/friends.

  7. Understanding that it is the little things that count… It is the attention to detail that can be really important and when this is understood somehow it seems that the bigger picture takes care of itself… This is very useful understanding as sometimes, if life tends to be a little overwhelming, if we start with the little things then the tide of overwhelm can subside and we can return to clarity and focus.

  8. It is a chore to live anything less than the love that we are and how we move will determine whether we express this love or inhibit it. A simple act such as cleaning our house can contain all we need in that moment to evolve. Therefore it is our movements that determine whether we are choosing to be in evolution or not.

    1. Very true Liane, it’s our moment to moment movements that determine whether we choose to evolve or not, and every moment has an offering.

  9. Creating space takes the pressure off ourselves to not go into a drive to get everything done in one go and to connect more deeply to our natural rhythm so that there is a lightness and joy we are able to bring to the quality in which we work.

  10. “What if I cleaned tenderly and allowed myself to feel my tenderness while I was cleaning? The tenderness that I know I have in my touch.” I love what you have shared here Johanna, this is key to bringing a true quality to everything we do.

  11. We can so easily put the focus on what we do and how much we do rather than on ourselves and how we feel when we are doing it. The quality gets lost when we lose ourselves and just do by rote. A great reminder to be present and allow ourselves to enjoy all of our activities even those we may have considered chores.

  12. A space that has been lovingly cleaned and cleared of clutter feels amazing. This is some thing I have always noticed but now I have a greater understanding of how healing it really is particularly when it is not rushed and conscious presence is brought to the task. This has showed me that we all know energetically that to clear, clean and order a space that we occupy no matter what it is, changes the energy in that space.

  13. This is such a beautiful example of how honouring our body supports us and that when we do this everything else falls into place. Moments are always presented to us to choose to love and cherish ourselves. It is entirely our choice as to whether we do this or not.

  14. It doesn’t always happen to to me when I clean, but when it does I love it when the chores through being gentle and with myself become enjoyable, and when these things do align the results are clearly seen and felt.

  15. Trusting how we feel in our bodies despite what we think is good or is the right way is a super lesson with ourselves. It is a deep honoring and understanding of ourselves, rather than being bound by shoulds. It is an opening of trust with ourselves and also with others.

  16. Being very organised and competent myself, I am good at getting things done. So, doing ‘what is needed’ – but according to what? Is the question I am increasingly becoming aware of lately. Am I connected to the deepest truth I feel inside me, or is it already a pre-conceived image? Being good at ‘doing things’ I feel I have often deceived myself that I am enjoying them.

  17. I’m sure we have all fallen victim to succumbing to ticking boxes in a task orientated fashion and yet in doing so we deny ourselves the opportunity to truly connect and enjoy what we are doing when we do it…. so I just love the concept and how supportive it is to no longer do chores, but embrace instead little moments to spread your loveliness around the home.

  18. In a nutshell we have a choice in how we clean (or do anything) we can clean from our head or we can clean from our heart.

  19. I love the feeling of doing housework after work, it’s the feeling of taking that commitment from your day at work, into your home life and into what truly supports you to go forward into the next day. The rhythm of life is amazing.

  20. From what you have shared it is clear to see how any ideals and beliefs that we hold onto, only keep us from being fully present with ourselves, and as such appreciating the joy that comes from being in connection to our essence with whatever we do. As such, and as you have shown, every moment can be enjoyed with the presence of our glorious being, as we can feel that there is no other place we would truly rather to be.

  21. ‘Enjoy it’ these are words we rarely think about when we have things that must be done, and yet, these exact words were in my head recently as I went down to the operating theatre for a surgical procedure. Those two words enabled me to reconnect within and feel my body, relax and surrender to what was about to happen. It made a huge difference to my anxiousness and the operation went smoothly.

  22. Indeed we are allowed to enjoy everything that we do, and there is no rule or anything like that that says that we are not allowed to enjoy working, so we have to admit that this thought is something of our own making. If this is so them we can also choose to bring enjoyment in work, and playfully see where it will bring us.

  23. What a beautiful blog to re-vist Johanna –there is a lovely feeling of everything flowing so effortlessly and harmoniously when in alignment with your body as you describe. Developing that deeper level of trust with yourself is so awesome!
    “I have felt a deeper level of appreciation in my ability to Trust… trust my body, trust my feelings, trust myself and the rest (including cleaning my house!), will fall into place”.

  24. Self awareness is such a key in connecting to the wisdom of the body Johanna! Letting the body lead opens up the space to complete what needed. I love how this happens and how the mind responds!

  25. “My house cleaning chores no longer felt like chores but lovely little moments where I was able to spread my loveliness around our home” – this feels truly lovely. I recently came to realise how I ‘think’ and plan,try and be organized and efficient and, how that actually stops the flow of what could be available, and I was shortchanging myself with that approach, and what you share here is a different way of movement all together, and I love how that feels to me.

  26. This is lovely Johanna. I too can get fixated with doing things in a certain way and being quite rigid with myself. I am finding that mixing things up a bit and letting go of my tight grip on the reigns is much more fun and things start to flow in a different way. Finishing things in one go is no longer a drive I have.

  27. In the quotes at the top of this blog, there is this burdensome quality to them – a quality I know very well because I have lived with these thoughts for so long, and so I know that they do not serve us as people, they do not support us, they in fact only serve to pull us down and to deny the actual love that we have for ourselves and the space we live in.

  28. This is inspiring to look at cleaning chores in a different way, with a more loving flow and presence. I use to get caught up in the same way, like a military operation, but now I go with the feel of my body. I will clean one area and then do something for myself and then another and it could be done in a day or over a few days. I also get help when I seem to have to much other things on, I no longer put the pressure on myself.

  29. This is something I am still learning how to do, but it makes a world of difference to live from that simple connection and impulse rather than the drive and nervous energy/ stress to force the body to get through the day. I have learned the hard way that this is deeply harming on the body and something we do not really get away with. Far better to lose the investment and live in the presence and true quality of each moment, and needs to be done will be done.

  30. Reading this is a great reminder that the temptation to checkout and separate from ourselves presents in a million forms, and unless we become super honest, whenever we stop one way, another is introduced that we readily follow. Thanks to the simple tools presented by Universal Medicine life becomes a steady unfolding of awareness and the mastery of staying connected and unaffected by the pressures and spin of a world that wants you to be anything but that.

  31. I’m becoming more aware of when I go into a rigidity or hardness in the way I’m doing things and to remember to make it about the quality of connection that I bring to a task first and foremost and the quality that is therefore also left behind!

  32. This is a great lesson in moving to an impulse and not from our minds. It’s the difference between control and connection.

  33. What a gorgeous blog Johanna. Thank you for sharing. Chores is a word which we often associate with something burdensome and that we have to do. I love your approach of enjoying them and seeing cleaning as spreading your loveliness around your home. I’m going to try it with my own loveliness 🙂

  34. Saturday use to be my big day of cleaning and I would push myself through it all so I could have Sunday as my free time day. But when Sunday came around I was exhausted from the day before so it was really not doing me any favours. I now love cleaning through my week and breaking it up into manageable little pockets of play and its a time for me to explore how I move when I clean. I also have much more space on the weekend too.

  35. It’s such a great point and awareness Johanna about something you do every week. Rather than rushing through to get things done so you could do something enjoyable, what I got from this is that you made the cleaning enjoyable. And why wouldn’t we be tender and loving in our cleaning just as we may be having a shower or doing something else?

  36. This article shares something super sweet, honouring and respectful, and I reckon the world would be a very different place if we applied this approach to everything we do. Thank you.

  37. How we are within affects all that we do. ‘Going through the motions’ or seeing tasks as drudges to be completed quickly is a reflection of how we are in life. Finding a way to bring love and enjoyment to everyday activities, makes life easier for us: our homes love the care and attention we give it and we get to live in a space that is beautifully cared for.

  38. One of the reasons I delay and dislike hoovering is because the hoover I have is heavy and cumbersome. Much more self-loving is to replace it with one that is light and small. We don’t have to subject ourselves to misery when simple solutions can be found.

  39. I loved this sharing Johanna it is a good reminder that we move in moments and if we make all our movements a dance of joy then all our moments will be made of joy.

  40. One of the reasons why cleaning can seem so burdensome, is because of the amount of ‘stuff’, material possessions ,we amass to excess. Many of us live in homes that feel weighty and heavy because of our consumer junkie habit of buying and stuffing cupboards full of things we don’t need or do not serve us. Paring everything down to the minimum creates a spaciousness that simplifies life and makes our homes a joy to live in and easy to maintain.

  41. A very wise person said something very similar to me: Slow down and enjoy every second. Reminding myself of this is incredibly supportive especially when I allow an ideal to creep in. Setting myself a schedule that I then feel has to be carried out according to that schedule I find puts me under a stress and often overwhelm. It is also attempting to control what cannot be controlled, so instead I have migrated more to doing things when they pop up and I feel they need doing.

  42. It is interesting how much pressure we put on ourselves when we have an expectation in the way we need to do something. Learning to honour how our body is feeling allows the space and freedom to do things from our natural flow and rhythm so that we are able to enjoy and appreciate being with ourselves and bringing this quality to everything we do.

  43. Learning that there is a rhythm and flow that is on offer to us each and every day – and we can complete our day in knowing all that was needed to be done was done – not in drive, nervous tension, anxiousness or hardness, but rather in connection with ourselves and the purpose of what is needed in each moment. – this would change our relaitonship completely with work and daily repsonsibilities. . .Seems simple so we need to delve further to uncover why we go to such pains to live the other self-destructive way.

  44. the drive and push to get things done according to a schedule is how most of us have learnt to complete tasks and meet deadlines however I am learning that this drive and nervous energy is running a false harming energy, harming not only me but harming of everyone around me and the quality of everything I have done – learning to live from our true quality first takes some practice, but there is nothing to be gained by living without it.

  45. Most of us could divide life into “must dos” and “wants”, and the supposed trick to life is to create a balance between the two. But that is actually an illusion. The key is to realise that the quality of being should not change between the two. Then life becomes one continuous flow, and perversley what you find is that “time out” taken doing what you want actually exhausts and disconnects you way more than doing what needs to be done. And the more true you are to yourself and to the world, the more you find that you actually get energised by what you previously considered to be work, which is what actually leads to the revelation that taking time out actually does not reinvigorate you like you might like to think. This is not to say one should not take time off, or not go on a holiday, or not take time out, as long as when you are doing those things you do not take time out from your quality of being. And that is the fundamental mistake most make when taking a holiday – it is used as an escape from life, rather than just another activity that can be used to deepen one’s connection to life.

  46. It is amazing how space opens up to take care of what ever is there to be attended to, when the push, must do, etc. are dropped. I love this combination of the magical science of allowing.

  47. Today we did some DIY at home that has been waiting for a couple of years to be sorted. Small things like hanging a mirror, so pictures and putting a small cupboard up on the wall above where it had been living on a sideboard since we moved in. It is absolutely extraordinary the amount of space that has been created by doing these few simple things. I don’t mean physical space necessarily, its more a feeling of spaciousness that comes with the harmony and flow we can now feel within our home. It’s really highlighted to me how destructive it is to live in delay, and this lesson is something I can now take with me into all areas of my life.

  48. Yes, the nervous energy, drive and emotional forays all stem from pictures that we are holding of how the world is ‘supposed’ to be, and how we are supposed to be, so anything that does not live up to our pictures we can then allow to destroy us – understanding that this is a deliberate choice we are making, investing in pictures, is difficult sometimes to navigate but to truly understand is to be able to dissolve the pictures and step into living truly free.

  49. ‘Slow down – you have to do it, so you might as well enjoy it!” Bingo! In the past I too would rush through my my housework, but these days, I follow my impulses when to do clean out the cupboards or to do the hovering and it always feels perfect timing and effortless.

  50. Trust my body, that is huge Johanna, reading this today has clarified my drive to another degree; it’s like I feel I have to push myself because otherwise it just won’t happen but this is just not true, it will happen but maybe not in the way I expect it and if I take my body into the equation, it opens up a space for it to happen in a very different way, one where I might actually enjoy it, not that this is radical! It shouldn’t be I know but in fact it is, so thank you for this very valuable sharing this morning.

  51. When I approach cleaning feeling like I have to do it, then my body feels tight, hard, tense and awful. But when I approach cleaning with joy it feels entirely different. I feel more energised, I get more done and the space feels amazing.

  52. The quality I feel in the home is entirely different when I remain connected to my body and allow the space to enjoy the process, but when I rush around to get the cleaning done I am continually walking around in that busy energy I have created in the house, that ends up feeling quite draining on the body.

    1. Anna I know what you mean, when we rush around what we leave behind is that busyness energy, but when we remain connected we leave that stillness behind, so different both energies are. In the stillness there feels more expansion and space.

  53. I can relate to having a ‘rule book’ approach to many things I do. I am opening up to suggestions to try doing things a different way. In the past I have been very resistant to change, but these days I’m finding I am learning much more by being open.

  54. Our ability to determine routines that work for us is an ‘essential’ for human life, isn’t it Johanna… What I also find the greatest learning, is that things needing to be done can indeed ‘get done’ – and that maintaining our commitment, along with honouring our bodies and their flow, actually supports the space to open up for what we need to do. And if called for as you’ve shared here, a re-assessment of how things may roll…

  55. If you really think about it, life is just a movement. And here is something ironic. Let us say we associate fun with playing golf, which is in short, just a specific movement designed to strike a little ball. Incidentally, it is a movement not dissimilar in part to swinging a sledge hammer. But here is the interesting thing. The latter is considered work, and a burden, and something we hate doing, whilst the former is something many purport to love. But if it is just a movement, and the movement is the same, then why the difference in attitude? If you really ponder on this, there is a revelation offered that assists one to understand the meaning of true joy.

  56. oh what fun it can be exploring how we can live, without the beliefs we have had for oh so long, and learning to live, and re order the things we do based on whats needed!

  57. There is a rhythm of life that is so powerful and so beautiful, and this pulse is beating through us all… When we feel it, it is undeniable and so strong… the enigma is how it can be so ignored by so many.

  58. Getting caught up in chores is such an easy way to get ourselves racy and loose our rhythm. What you have shared here Johanna is a wonderful relationship you have clearly developed with yourself and in the relationship you are now aware of when you are going into that drive to ‘get things done’, very beautiful.

  59. Listening to the body and deeply appreciating each moment brings us into the flow and things just open up as they are meant to – it is so great exposing the pictures we have that we allow to control our every moment.

  60. So important to break down these ideals, I am playing with what you have described here and are going to be very supported by the enjoying of the task!

  61. There are a lot of things that need to be done and it’s up to us wherever we enjoy them or not. I’m realising that it’s the things I turn to for false ‘enjoyment’ that actually make it much harder to simply be joyfull. For example I will eat a sweet ‘treat’ and then feel racy and distracted as a consequence. When I take good care of myself it is easy to connect to my steadiness and joy.

  62. So perfect to read this on this Saturday morning because it was exactly went through my mind last night. I have a busy weekend planned so I used last night to grocery shop and do some of the food prep to ‘get it out of the way’ and ‘free up some time for the weekend’.

    And while those things are true, my body was also asking for some rest as it was tired and I had pushed it a bit during the week. But I overrode it, to ‘get the jobs out of the way’.

    It’s a big one for me, learning to trust my body and that space will be there for the things that need to be done so your blog is inspiring for me to read today, thank you.

  63. Johanna, this is great how you have removed the idea of tasks being a chore and instead have reminded us of how it is the quality with which we do our tasks that is the deciding factor as to whether we enjoy them or not.

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s