Updated: Jul 26, 2021
Dishwashing. Like Nike says... "Just do it." Or rather, don't let it do you in.
Wax On, Wax Off
It's not just doing the dishes. It's discipline. It's routine. It's reaping the benefit of putting something into practice. It's following through. It's good hygiene. A break from screen time. Humbling. Heck, even a way to get holy.
I once read about "pouring prayers" -- saying a quick prayer every time you pour yourself a cup of coffee, water, or juice. Why not "divine dishes?" #CrushWhileYouBrush #PrayWhileYouSlay... last night's grime away? Hmm, let me think. What else? What verb rhymes with sponge?... You get the point. Deep cleaning can teach deep lessons. Take a page out of Mr. Miyagi's playbook in The Karate Kid. He knew this all along.
Invest in a sturdy dish brush, a bottle brush, and a good dish drying rack, like this one.
The easier and more efficient you can make the task, the more enjoyable it can be!
A Little Goes A Long Way
I'm also taking a page out of my dad's playbook. We had a dishwasher growing up, but I've never seen it get used. Not once. Unless it was to store dishes (anyone else know what I'm talking about?). Assuming that it's broken, and my parents never cared to fix it, or that my dad is secretly Mr. Miyagi and is trying to prove a point, he chooses to hand wash the dishes. Every. Single. Night. And not once has he ever complained or asked anyone else to do them. Woah, saintly. I know, right?
I'm not that good. I don't always offer to do my roommate's dishes. But sometimes I do. And I'll be honest, 9 times out of 10, I don't get any acknowledgement. But when I do get that random "thank you," it really goes a long way -- for me. It makes me less bitter, taking the sting out of the second or third day of seeing their dirty dishes piling up, and more apt to helping. Who knows, maybe they'll surprise me and return the favor.
Clearing the drying rack or dishwasher may be enough incentive for the next person to hop in and start cleaning!
If not, it's one less step you have to do later.
Finish What You Started
Let's face it, it's hard to get anything done these days. Distractions are everywhere. We can't focus more than 60 seconds (thanks, internet). And we will always, always, always have something more important to do. It's okay. That's life. But doing the dishes might be a great, subconscious boost.
You are giving yourself the opportunity to start and finish something every day. Doesn't it feel good to cross something off the to-do list, especially when that list feels endless?
Oh, and don't half🍑 it. You don't want bits of last night's lasagna in your breakfast today -- or worse, in someone else's breakfast. Not the kind of leftovers we're taking about. No need to re-do the dishes. Just do them once a day, and be done.
Here’s how to do your dishes:
Stack a neat pile of your dirty dishes throughout the day.
Try to clean shared/highly used items ASAP, like the good frying pan or your favorite spatula, so they're ready for you or someone else to use. Same goes for extra stinky pots and Tupperware.
Unless your sink is an industrial-sized Food Network type, keep dirty dishes OUT of the sink, mainly so you can use it more easily.
Indulge in your favorite playlist, podcast, or prayers and get scrubbing!
Rinse and repeat tomorrow.
There you have it. Dishwashing. A chore that can be turned into a productive challenge that hopefully keeps you and your home feeling a little better. Oh, I got it! -- #TakeThePlungeAndSponge :)
One last word of advice: give others (and yourself) a little grace if you fall short. There's always tomorrow to try again. Another day, another load of dishes!