Breaking the Consciousness of Working as a Cleaner

Recently, I realised some beliefs that I had about working as a cleaner. While on holiday I started to break the consciousness around cleaning.

I was sharing with some other people and the floor became very dirty, so I decided to clean it. As I was vacuuming and mopping, I could feel some resistance in me about cleaning the floor. I asked myself, why is this so?

I work partly as a cleaner and partly as a nanny. In the last 3 years I have experienced cleaning family homes, shops, seminar-centers etc. I started working as a cleaner because I didn’t have work in my usual field. I knew that there are always cleaning jobs available and the payment is good in comparison to other jobs.

I started working as a cleaner in a building that was used for holding seminars. I cleaned the whole seminar house for several days, for 4-5 hours at a time: I liked it and I was good at it because of my attention to detail. I take my time to do the cleaning and prefer to complete one room at a time so I don’t get confused with the jumping backwards and forwards.

Even though I was enjoying it and I knew that I was doing a good job, there was still a part of me that felt that working as a cleaner does not belong on the list of jobs that you would like to speak about. I was raised with the belief that you are what you do. So it was about identification with what I do and getting recognition and identification through a job title, or if I was earning a lot of money. I defined this as being ‘successful’.

My father was a dentist. I have studied and completed my Sociology degree at university. As I was not truly committed to work and didn’t want to take responsibility for my life, I worked in many different fields, often only for a short time… thinking that in the next job or field it will be different.

When I told my parents that I was working as a cleaner, they reacted strongly, which didn’t make it pleasant for me. I continued, but the more I started to accept that it is fine to work as a cleaner, the more my parents also accepted it… which was great!

I had an experience cleaning a sink in a bathroom and it was pure joy because the energy I was in expanded when I cleaned the sink. So I discovered that if I feel harmonious in my body and I stay with that quality then it is wonderful to move my body and clean a house. I have found that the activity of cleaning is absolutely neutral but we have tainted it with something negative, something which many of us don’t even like doing in our own homes. Many of us seem to have an unwritten attitude or rule that says No Way! to working as a cleaner.

I also had the belief that working in a physical job is not as much valued in our society compared to an office/business job.

I once thought that it would be too tiring and that my body wouldn’t be able to handle a lot of physical work. Which is all not true. I have found that my body loves to move when I clean and I end up having more energy than I can imagine, especially if I am working in a way that fully considers and is loving to my body. It is important to honor what the body is telling us.

What is truly exhausting is to live and express without love because this is not natural to our divine essence. So, to not feel the dis-ease of not being love and separated from others, I created distractions. I used emotions and food as my daily companions and for creating problems. Now I can see how long I have continued this way of living – not truly choosing to make it all about love, and only love. And that I have chosen this way of living for such a long time, accepting misery and disregard, keeping myself small as my way of being. But love is available now – I just received the picture – love waits on the doorsteps of my house, it is always there for me, I just need to open the door to my heart. We can’t lose love but we can fight it and deny it.

Through studying with Universal Medicine and Serge Benhayon I have learned that what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it, and in which energy am I working. For example, if I am miserable and angry then this quality can be felt in the work I do.

There are only two energies to choose to be in:

The one that is of love and connection to your true self, the Divine/God/to all people –

or the one that is not of love and is in separation to God, to yourself and others.

If I choose to be love, I feel joyful and loving. I then clean with this love and joy for the house and the families I work in and for.

Now I get to feel and know how important it is to not only take care of myself when I am working as a cleaner in other people’s homes, but also to lovingly take care of myself equally in my own surroundings, for example, keeping my own house clean and tidy. As soon as I do not look after my clothes or tidy the kitchen after me, then that reflects to me that I am not in harmony and am not consciously present with myself.

I have really connected to this recently – that “everything matters“: we can not ignore anymore things which do not feel right for us. And our marker needs to be our body – not our mind.

By Janina Koch,Cologne/Germany (EASL)

338 thoughts on “Breaking the Consciousness of Working as a Cleaner

  1. Beautiful Janina. It’s true, our body loves moving in harmony with its divine essence. No matter what we do, it loves being ready and purposeful. As long as we are present, whatever we do feels complete. Every action nurtures the next and we have access to experience the joy of being in this space. Why did we separate and labeled jobs position as less or more important? Simply because we separated from the simplicity of being in our natural flow.

  2. Janina it was lovely to read your sharing about work, not only from the titles perspective we become identified or attached to status wise, but how it is accepted by people around us too. We are bought up by many beliefs and these being passed on by generations are more harming than anything else, because we carry out these from our bodies and attitudes too. Who cares what your title is, except the care we give to the title itself – something worth pondering over.

    I loved this statement too, “what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it”, leaves such a marker for others to feel too. I’m learning this in everything I am involved in, not just related to work too.

    Thank you for in my current work environment, it isn’t about what I’m doing, it is how I am doing it in is the key, and that’s what matters for everyone.

  3. There’s a couple of statements that stood out for me, “Was raised with the belief that you are what you do”, and that is a belief that tarnishes us for life. Always about the doing and the status that’s attached to it can be harming as we grow.

    And, ‘what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it’, is spot on. When we do anything with an attitude, then that comes laced with something that becomes a chore.

    Choosing love brings a whole new way of living and there is much for us to learn to live from this way. It is only a matter of time, when this plays an important part in our lives and Janina, you have proved that it is possible if we choose to do so.

    1. Reading my own statement from a few months ago and how I am today makes me realise how far I have come with “how I do it” is continually refined. Then God offers another way to be as that, that is laced is still within and needs to be exposed and revealed for us to see and without judgment, out from our bodies, for that is not of service but of a slave to something that is not God….

  4. Janina, you are correct in saying that in our society we do not seem to give the same value to jobs such as cleaning or dustbin truck drivers etc etc. compared to say office jobs which require university degrees etc. However, as you and I know, each job is equally important. Where would we all be in this world without someone to support with cleaning and dustbins and bus driving etc etc. It is super important to value what we each bring.

    1. I agree Henrietta, every job is an important aspect of life. After all it is only a title, it’s how we receive this title that makes the difference.

  5. Cleaning is more than physical – there is of course the physical act of cleaning up a mess, but there is so much more that is happening than we realise. Very often when we clean a space especially one that has not been looked after, what you can feel is the disregard as a heavy blanket of dust all over the place. It is this disregard that can make us also feel a little ‘grumpy’ if we are not careful to be aware of how it can affect us.

  6. “What is truly exhausting is to live and express without love because this is not natural to our divine essence.” – It is not what we do but how we do things that can make us tired!

  7. “If I choose to be love, I feel joyful and loving. I then clean with this love and joy for the house and the families I work in and for.” This is so gorgeous Janina. Every single member of a team is equally important, be it in a home, an office or institution etc. Without cleaners and cleaning the world would soon fall apart. I remember years ago in UK when cleaners and bin men went on strike. Businesses were soon in trouble. Cleaners are the unsung heroes of modern day society. What can be more valuable than reimprinting every corner of a home or office with love and light?

  8. When refuse collectors stop working everywhere rapidly becomes chaotic, piles of rubbish and the threat of disease and disorder. Suddenly everyone appreciates how essential it is to keep our environment clean. Cleaning is the foundation of every well functioning home, office and public space. Cleaning with love of who you are shines a light wherever you go.

  9. What ever the work we do if it comes packaged with Love and being of service to everyone then our job satisfaction is guarantied, and what a way to make a living as we can feel that our place of work is always a joy to be at.

  10. For me, the bit I find difficult when it comes to cleaning the public place is seeing how people do not care and filling myself with judgement. There’s a big part of me that wants things to be different.

  11. Janina this is such a big one for many of us this belief that you are what you do, which is all about being identified and receiving recognition via a job title. I have not come across any other organisation that starts off with the premise that we are enough just as we are other than Universal Medicine the support that is given to everyone so that they are enabled to feel this is amazing.

    1. It is great how once you accepted yourself and what you do that those around you equally changed to accept it, ‘I told my parents that I was working as a cleaner, they reacted strongly, which didn’t make it pleasant for me. I continued, but the more I started to accept that it is fine to work as a cleaner, the more my parents also accepted it… which was great!’

  12. Working as a cleaner it’s seen as a low cathegory job and we have built a society that is so indentified with the things done and achievements. How would look like this world if we all would value ourselves for the preciousness we are and what uniquely bring instead of measuring our value depending of we can or can’t do? The picture changes completely.

  13. Janina feels very beautiful to read about a woman like you who brings a totally different quality in to her workplace and that doesn’t feel less or more because what she does. It’s very honouring to appreciate the preciousness you can bring in all you do in life and inspires me very much. Beyond the labels from this society that dictates what’s important and what’s not we can enjoy by bringing a new way of being with ourselves and others, which is really exquisite, deeply loving and caring.

  14. Realising that every job is equally valuable to any and every other job is important. When we stop making life about self and making it about all of us instead, this will be realised by all.

    1. Spot on Doug – we all work together as a community and society and without one part working we cannot operate properly. No different to the physical body – each organ has its role which we could not be without. Just because the Urinary tract or lower bowels deal with much of the body’s waste products, we cannot see it as a less important organ or value it less – in fact if anything we would be in BIG trouble if the waste and cleaning services of our body shut down! The same goes for our society too with cleaning services as only one example!

  15. We can’t lose love but we can fight it and deny it.’ And we do or have done it. I wanted to change jobs because it was physically too much for me and named it an abusive working environment but a wise woman said to me it is not that the job is abusive it is you bringing a body that is abused to your work. I felt the truth of her words and deepened my level of self care, supporting my body with gentle exercises and honoured its signals more. I still work in a similar workplace and it is great to feel how my body loves it.

  16. Janina this is a great blog to support the consciousness that is around cleaning, especially here in the UK where it seem to be seen as something uneducated people do because that’s the only job they are fit for so are lesser by inference. But cleaning a building is hugely important because as you say everything is energy so what energy is the building cleaned in? Imagine an office building that was cleaned with care, love and attention when the people came into work would they feel the difference and may be act differently with one another? Surely to have the power to change people through cleaning with love, care and attention is something to aspire too?

    1. Well said Mary. Cleaners get paid very little for what they bring to a workplace too. The cleaners at the hospital where I volunteer often seem surprised when I greet them on entering the ward. Its almost like they are invisible to every one.

  17. Our marker needs to be our body and not our mind and this exposes so clearly where we’ve gotten lost with ourselves in how we live, for we live from the mind alone, and the pictures we have there, and do not consider and feel how our body, so in effect we are living with a small portion of who we are and not the whole.

  18. I volunteer in a hospital and always make a point of connecting with the cleaners – they are so valued because if they don’t do their work well the wards get filthy and become a breeding ground for germs. Yet they have become almost invisible. Noone interacts with them it seems. Without them the doctors and nurses cant work efficiently. The consciousness of cleaning needs to change.

    1. I agree sueq2012 the consciousness of cleaning needs to change and there is no better place to start than in our own life by being observant of the quality we choose to be in, as we clean our own space.

  19. “If I choose to be love, I feel joyful and loving. I then clean with this love and joy for the house and the families I work in and for. ” So true Janina. Whatever we turn our hands to – if done with love then we make a difference.

  20. We have two wonderful cleaners and always feel our house has been blessed after their visit. They are greatly valued and an important part of our team.

  21. ‘We can’t lose love but we can fight it and deny it.’
    This is why the illness rates and suicides are climbing up fast. Many fight against the love that expands more on earth. We can choose to open up to it or we fight against it. It is a choice with consequences for our body as the body gets the flow of God through him or the flow of astral. The latest makes the body ill.

  22. I used to be really passionately hate cleaning but this has changed in me in the last few years – all that changed was simply a shift in values, and beginning to understand that the small details in life actually massively count, and that each imprint left from cleaning lasts much longer than we could imagine.

  23. We live in a society where cleaners are deemed as the bottom of the pyramid, the unskilled, unable to perform. Perhaps, this is a reflection of how we are in our homes, if we don’t value a clean space and a person who’s job is to ensure the space is clean, what does that tell us about ourselves?

  24. I have always done cleaning jobs and loved especially how different a house would feel afterwards. Now when I come home from work and the woman who cleans the house has been I can always feel who she was when she did the cleaning and in what quality that leaves my house. The imprint and foundation cleaning lays gives the opportunity to live and work based on love and connection or the opposite.

  25. I feel there is always an opportunity to appreciate what each of us brings to a job, so the simplest task can have the most ginormous affect as we leave behind the imprints of our beautiful selves in everything that we do.

  26. Cleaning is imprinting a place and how it is done makes a huge difference, and it feels to be a part of completion we should all naturally be responsible for and not just dumped on designated ‘cleaners’.

  27. Everything does matter, not in terms of what we do for a job but the quality in which we move through life.

  28. I spent sometime cleaning and de-cluttering my bedroom yesterday, afterwards I couldn’t believe the difference I felt in my body, more expansive and spacious and the whole home received this blessing as well. The quality in the way we work no matter what job we do leaves an imprint that has a powerful flow on effect to others around us.

  29. “…our marker needs to be our body – not our mind.” And this is the key. If we focus on how our body feels when doing a job it is so very different to functioning from our head. Gone are all the beliefs and judgments, and we are left with the joy of the moment.

  30. This is a powerful shift in the old consciousness that binds most human beings – to be acceptable, we are under the greatest illusion and big fat lie that we have to measure up in what we do, rather than simply be fully in the harmonious quality we actually do it in..
    “Through studying with Universal Medicine and Serge Benhayon I have learned that what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it, and in which energy am I working. For example, if I am miserable and angry then this quality can be felt in the work I do”.

  31. I have really been resenting cleaning lately but your blog Janina has reminded me of the opportunity to let go and expand as we clean and clear away the old to make way for the sparkly new.

  32. Disconnecting from the mind and connecting with the heart has been a back and forth process for me. Today I am going to clean my home and it was great to again be reminded of the responsibility I have with what quality I will be in when cleaning my home, there are only two choices, today i choose a loving presence when cleaning my home.

  33. I love the awareness that when we do things in the energy of love, we are energised by our movements. What a wonderful marker this is.

  34. When success in life is identified with the doing part, we are trapped by what we do. There is no space between what we do and us. This is not surprising in a world where people are driven by images and aspire to become them.

  35. Ha ha! I have been working as a cleaner for 10 years and it took me a long time to accept that it was as valuable as any other job, but more and more so I am appreciating what I bring. The thoughts used to be fed to be that if I was not working using my head, working with my hands was in some way lesser. But there was no truth in these thoughts being fed to me.

  36. The way we move and the connection we have to our inner-most love is dusted over all the space we clean for ourselves or for anyone else.

  37. The care of self for working in whatever role it is we do is super important. If working requires a strong physical body, then that must be built, if working requires complete mental clarity then the body must be nurtured to provide that.

  38. I appreciate so much the cleaners that support my working place and home to be the welcoming and loving places to be. It is a joy when someone does their job with care for people.

    1. I find cleaners who work like this are just as much clearers as cleaners and I too deeply appreciate them.

    2. Yes, the energy the cleaner works in can be felt, ‘I have learned that what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it, and in which energy am I working. For example, if I am miserable and angry then this quality can be felt in the work I do.’

  39. The last paragraph is very powerful. I notice I tend to ignore things that I think no one will know about, but make sure I cover all the other things that people see. This is draining because it ends up being about keeping up appearances rather than honouring and accepting I’m worth the same care as I offer others.

  40. When we live by the truth that everything matters, we know then that it is not what we do but our movements within it.

  41. This is amazing, so many people are constantly feeling exhausted these days, ‘I have found that my body loves to move when I clean and I end up having more energy than I can imagine, especially if I am working in a way that fully considers and is loving to my body.’ It is important to listen to and honour what our body tells us.

  42. Janina no matter how many times I read this it is a source of healing for me. I also have found through studying the work of Serge Benhayon that I can now feel that quality of love, joy and stillness in my body as I clean and this becomes an imprint in my house, and also nurtures and nourishes my body. Learning to live this consistently is what my focus is currently and probably will be my whole life, who would not want to be love 24/7? Thanks for this line too “As soon as I do not look after my clothes or tidy the kitchen after me, then that reflects to me that I am not in harmony and am not consciously present with myself.” This was really helpful to read.

  43. I agree with “everything matters” and also can see how we view certain professions as being better then others. Where would we be without people to clean? How would our houses, our streets, our parks and beaches look? Are we all supposed to be highly educated lawyers or are we to be truly ourselves and whatever the physical outplay of that looks like is just more of that same truth and therefore equally appreciated. As the article is saying what we do isn’t the truth of who we are, it’s just a part of it and therefore we shouldn’t see it as the everything. The next time we see someone greater then another from what they do maybe we should consider the person or see the person first and see if this consideration or possibility brings a different view.

  44. I love cleaning and feel it to be a great joy to see the finished work shining back at me. Cleaning brings everything alive again. It is like a magic wand.

  45. Wow this blog made me feel differently about my corporate job. You have made it clear that every move we make can be expansive if that is the energy that we choose. Imagine if we were taught that cleaning was a great joy and an opportunity to feel amazing and truly support others. You wouldn’t have to pay kids to do chores, the task itself would be the reward.

  46. Being in harmony and bringing harmony to all you do is such amazing service, ‘ I discovered that if I feel harmonious in my body and I stay with that quality then it is wonderful to move my body and clean a house.’

  47. When Love is what we make every choice about how freeing is that for our spirit. So it can clean out all the ideals and believes it has about life and the illusion of how we are actually affects everything we do. Could it be with the way we do anything even our most humble tasks it can have Loving imprints?

  48. I have just remembered that when I was a child, the rubbish collection workers went on strike. Our household rubbish was piled up on the streets in unsightly smelly heaps for weeks. It was not pleasant and I remember thinking then how we take things like our rubbish collection for granted or look down on workers who do jobs like that.

  49. I hear young people talk about certain jobs as being beneath them. I used to think that way especially in my teens and twenties, but I too ‘have learned that what truly counts is not what I do but how I do it.’

  50. The body will want to communicate more than we typically want to hear, but learning to listen to it, and then learning to honour what is being said will bring a new way of living that is caring and loving.

    1. Heather so true, its is understanding what the body is communicating and then responding to it, by honouring it and taking it to another level of care.

  51. Great point – the marker has to be our body and not the mind which will come up with whatever explanation and reasoning suits and can be made to fit into how we think we want it to be.

  52. Thank you Janina for sharing your experience, there is so much in what you have shared and I love the way you have outed the ‘judgements’ that can be carried over and acted on regarding the valuing of different jobs. The quality can be felt clearly in everything we do and to be able to leave this divine imprint that you have alerted us to is gorgeous.

  53. An amazing testimonial that the success in life is not about what we do, but how we do it. Do we do our jobs and anything for that matter being in the fullness and joy of ourselves? Or do we do life being in the misery and complication which is not who we are in truth at all? It is always our choice and our consequence to experience. Life is deeply empowering knowing we have the power to change what we do not like.

  54. Jobs are a service to people, whether it’s as a cleaner or a CEO, every thing is relevant and particularly the quality in which we bring ourselves to each and every job as that is the reflection and the imprint that is left, for example a company where the cleaner isn’t valued, and doesn’t value themselves either, leaves no foundation for the company to work in, whereas if you have a cleaner who is valued and values themselves, it sets a beautiful platform for others to bring their own quality to the next step, and so on.

  55. “The belief you are what you do” – this blog is super interesting, I’ve discovered in myself recently part of my confidence in myself comes from knowing what I’m doing, so in situations where I don’t know what I’m doing my confidence rapidly disappears, so instead of holding onto the sense of who I am and taking it to whatever needs to be learnt, I don’t make a clear distinction between me and and work, or what I’m doing.

  56. ‘What is truly exhausting is to live and express without love because this is not natural to our divine essence.’

    Fabulous Janina, I love it. Not only have you broken the consciousness of job status for yourself but what you have shared here does it for us all. And you’ve given us the recipe for true harmony and vitality. There is no merit in any activity no matter how impressive it seems unless it is conducted in the quality that moving from and with love naturally confers.

  57. This is pure revelation in a world predominantly based upon ‘more’ and ‘less’… We are considered ‘more’ if we work in particular professions, and ‘less’ in others – it runs insanely deep and does take a willingness to be deeply aware, and a level of lived truth, to extricate ourselves from this… The truth being as you’ve shared here Janina – that it’s not about what we do, but the quality of our all that we bring to it.
    The world is turned on its head as we restore this true energetic value to all of our ‘work’ and every footprint that we leave, over the kudos given to skills, abilities, and the number of letters after one’s name…

  58. I also was raised with the belief that our worth is calculated on what we ‘do’; thanks to the teachings of Serge Benhayon I now know better. I love cleaning also Janina and I am fully aware that it is the quality of what I bring to cleaning; in fact anything we do; is the key.

  59. One job being better than another is a massive consciousness that many are held under. It has been a way that humanity have created separation and inequality between us. Truth being that we are all equal and all come from the same source than it’s energetically impossible to be better than another.

  60. Still one of my favourite blogs! Many gems of wisdom here about love and presented so simply and joyfully – thank you Janina! This is so true and succinctly expressed “What is truly exhausting is to live and express without love…”. We can so easily attribute our woes to any one problem in life yet underneath it all is the ache of our own lovelessness.

  61. The simplest jobs I do are often the jobs I love the most. I work as a store manager but one of my favourite things to do is sweep the outside of the shop. There is no job too small or not truly rewarding when done with a bit of care and a bit of magic.

    1. I know what you mean Meg, its like when I have to serve breakfast in the morning, it is simple and very magical as i flow around the room taking orders and serving breakfast.

  62. How many people can say that they have jobs that allow them to connect to harmony and love while doing it? Not many. People always complain about their jobs. So, jobs have to be seen not just in terms of social prestige but also in terms of service and service is not just to others but also to ourselves.

    1. I agree if jobs were seen in terms of service rather than social prestige we’d have a very different set of values when it came to how we saw all the different roles available.

    2. And valuing everyone’s contribution equally. We may see a CEO as more important but remove the cleaners for a few weeks and working well would become more difficult! Everyone contributes to the whole.

  63. I agree, Janina – judging/valuing ourselves according to what we do takes away the joy we actually feel in doing that activity. There may be a societal belief held by many, and I know for myself that I have fought very hard against it. It is not about ‘recovering’ self-worth, or swapping the belief with a more agreeable one – deeper still within us we know the truth, that we are what we are regardless and that can never be changed.

  64. We think we can get away with things we used to do, even without concerning how it feels but in truth we never can. In myself I notice there can be a sense of ‘this should be possible’ when my whole body is telling me the opposite. And yes, I am allowing myself to be more honest nowadays because my body knows that “everything matters”.

  65. I love cleaning too Janina and what a joy it is to bring our connection from our bodies and hearts to do the task at hand. Yesterday I cleaned out our storeroom at work and I took my time to make sure that everything was placed in order and easily accessible for everyone in our team. It felt so lovely once completed and it really allowed me to appreciate just how much our quality and way of being can truly change the feel in any environment we are in.

  66. I have a lovely memory from a trip to China some years ago. Walking down one of the very busy streets I came across a group of people who appeared to be sweeping the footpaths, but what took my attention was that they were dressed in matching uniforms; it was red, with epaulets with gold tassels and a matching hat. Yes they looked so distinguished in their uniforms but it was the way they worked that felt amazing; they were worked so quietly and with such focus that you could feel that they actually liked their work, that they were honoured for it, and that was brought to every stroke of their broom.

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