My first idea for the title for this post was, "The western lifestyle is ridiculous!" but I thought that may seem a bit negative! Although that is pretty much what I am writing about today - about how ridiculous our western lifestyle is! Have you ever considered this? I found myself contemplating that I am struggling to keep up with my housework, that I am struggling to find time to go to gym and that I am struggling to make the money that I need. So after my contemplation I tried to figure out how to afford to get a window cleaner, my car to the car wash and perhaps even someone to help me with my housework as I just don't have the time. My business takes up all my time and more... if that's even possible. So I need to hire in help!
A short while ago I introduced my husband to a great movie that I watched in South Africa when I was a child. The opening scene exposed how ridiculous we are in the Western world and if you continue watching past the end of the clip below into the full move, it showed the contrast between 'civilised man' and the peaceful and content Bushmen who are a tribe who live in the vast expanse of the Kalahari desert.
Most days I want to go to the gym or exercise in some way, but don't have the time, so I neglect the very thing I want to do.
My computer seems to demand my attention all day and all night. I do manage to eventually switch off to get some sleep but most days my workload is more than I can complete in a day.
My two eldest children have left home and are doing very well. Lorah-Kelly is happily married and is expecting her first child any minute now. Jordan has completed her degree in business and marketing and is graduating in May. I am so proud of them both for doing a great job with their life. Daniel and Amy are still in primary school and I am increasingly becoming aware that I need to be looking at secondary schools for Daniel and need to pay more attention to his school work. So, I consider employing a tutor to see if he may qualify for grammar school. All his CAT scores are above average so it seems like the right thing to do.
Window cleaner = £40
Gym = £25
Cleaner = £25
Tutor = £25
Car Cleaning = £20
TOTAL = £135
I need to spend £135 this week in order to achieve all that I want to!
WHAT! That's ridiculous! £135 just to have a clean home, stay fit and help my son with his school work? What was I thinking? This is silly. What happened to me. I never used to be like this. I used to clean my own home, educate my own children and be fit and healthy. Hmm my thoughts inspired me to remember a time when Lorah and Jordan were little and when money was scarce. Some of our best memories come from that time. I reminisce with a warm fuzzy feeling in my heart. What made those moments so enjoyable compared to this time - a time that I have more money than ever before but feel constantly stressed and under pressure?
Um... I contemplate and deduce that they were simpler times. And so I look at my life now and chuckle at how ridiculous it is. I work really, really hard to make enough money to afford the very things that I can easily do myself and these simple activities are actually the things that bring me pleasure. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the amazing company that I have build and get so much pleasure from working on building the Women's Business Club. The problem is that I have put so much into it over the past few years that I forgot about the simple pleasures in life, like spending an afternoon doing homework with my children or the joy of washing my windows and seeing the beautiful views as a result. Ironically, I am trying to teach Danial to appreciate the reward of hard work so that he puts more effort into his school work and enjoys what he is doing. Perhaps he finds this difficult to comprehend because his mother is sending out a mixed message... ooops!
So, My Life Pie inspires me to find the balance. I must or else life will spin out of control and I will eventually crash and burn. My top tip for today is to enjoy housework, use it as a way to get fit, save money and for thinking or praying time too. It will firm up your body, clean your house and save money! Here are some fun ways to exercise while cleaning.
Play Lively Music
Recent studies have shown that loud music with at least 120 beats per minute helps to increase the rate at which you exercise. This is a great way to get you in the mood for some high energy cleaning/exercising. Music also causes the body to release endorphins, which are your happy hormones - who doesn't want more happy hormones?
Washing dishes if done mindfully and peacefully has proved to have a significant impact on your health. In a recent study, researchers at Florida State University had 51 students wash dishes. The researchers found that people who washed dishes mindfully (they focused on smelling the soap, feeling the water temperature and touching the dishes) upped their feelings of inspiration by 25% and lowered their nervousness levels by 27%. The group that didn’t wash the dishes mindfully did not gain any benefits from the task. “It appears that an everyday activity approached with intentionality and awareness may enhance the state of mindfulness,” the study authors conclude.
Do calf raises as you hand wash dishes. Start with your legs hip-width apart. Move onto your toes and hold for 3 to 10 seconds, and then slowly come down.
You burn approximately 180 calories per hour cleaning windows. Alternate arms to work your upper and lower arm muscles.
Moving back and forth while vacuuming is great for your abs. You burn about 190 calories per hour vacuuming. Increase the calories you burn by using lunges while vacuuming. Take a large step forward with your right leg and lunge until your right knee is at a 90 degree angle. Hold the position for 3 to 10 seconds and then step back. Repeat with your left leg.
Sweeping or mopping burns approximately 195 calories per hour and works your shoulders and upper arms, so make sure you alternate arms every 3 to 5 minutes.
Use general tidying to get you up and down stairs as much as possible. You burn approximately 500 calories per hour walking up and down stairs. Always squat when picking objects up. Squatting builds the quadriceps, hamstring and abs.
There is so much more you can do, don't forget the positive impact that gardening and car washing can have too. Painting and decorating is also fun and great exercise as well as money saving! If you have children, actually play with them outdoors rather than taking them while you sit on your phone checking Facebook :/ I have learned to go out with my children without my phone!
Read another great post here with some fun tips on how to exercise while doing housework. I would love to hear from you - do you have any tips or thoughts?