Friday, July 29, 2011

Picturing Laundry

Admittedly this post is pretty funny to me. I don't really expect anyone to do this, but in all fairness, doing this today really helped this creative-minded lady get some housekeeping done.

We've been out and about quite a bit lately, and because I'm efficient at washing laundry and absolutely horrible about actually folding it, we had a large mountain of laundry in need of folding. I refer to laundry as the most sisyphean task ever: I sort it, I clean it, I fold it, I put it away, and then I get to do the same thing tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day... Needless to say, I was pretty whiny about folding it today as the summer sun poured through the windows.

So I decided to make folding the clothes a creative task. Inspired by an art teacher who created an assignment for which students needed to submit a piece of art that demonstrated some sort of change over a time period, I took a photo of the pile of laundry before I began folding, and once I started, I took photos at ten-minute intervals until I was finished. And while it wasn't a big deal to pause and take photos every ten minutes, it definitely got me folding with more enthusiasm. As the end of each ten-minute block of time came closer, I would pick up the pace, hoping to create more change between photos. Basically, photographing my laundry made me more mindful of the steps I took to get rid of it because I paused to compare my past with my present. And every ten minutes, my present looked better and better.

I need to be more mindful of the changes I make in my life, no matter how small, because a few small changes in the right direction can add up to one big change for the better. I need to stop whining about the big laundry piles in life and enjoy the process of making them shrink to nothing.

Now I'm thinking about doing this with all sorts of tasks around the house. Organizing my studio, going through the pantry, emptying the garage.... I could enjoy the process and the finished product.

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