Mindfulness in the Mundane…
Mindfulness in the mundane has a gift of power and presence…
Last weekend I finally had the inspiration to do something about our hallway (which has, over 2 years, become a rainbow of Farrow and Ball tester colours with no direction or hope of becoming anything more!). We have had 2 people design it for us and many given us advice, but neither my perfectionist husband or my carefree self could decide on anything!
By the end of last year we finally lost the will to make any form of decision and so it was to remain, in its current state of sadness for the unforeseeable future! I soon stopped explaining to clients who stepped through the door that ‘we were in the middle of decorating’ because to be honest, we weren’t! We were bored of even thinking of it!
I could hear my higher self shouting down, “First world problems Lou, LET IT GO!!” I asked myself who actually gives a fuck?! Like really? How important is it, in the grand scheme of things? Those who matter don’t care and those who care don’t matter right?… It’s a liberating place to be! So we gave ourselves a break and said, “the hall will get decorated when it wants to, it’s clearly not the right time”.
Hallelujah!! The moment came at 5pm on a Thursday in the middle of the kids playdates while cooking dinner. I got this overwhelming urge to pull out the tester paints again (I have a cupboard of about 6,000 if you need any!!) This gushing wave of inspiration was too much to ignore. I knew it was time, so in-between serving up mash potatoes I was slapping more rainbow tester paints over the walls. Obviously, the kids were like moths to the light (or like cats to a leg) and felt like rubbing their favourite clothes all over that exact spot *rolls eyes*
Nothing was gonna stop me, the Universe was on my side!
Before I knew it, Mrs Universe sent me a helper (cue little elf with paint brush). My helper-friend randomly (maybe not so randomly, thank you Universe!) called and asked if she could come and stay Friday night. One thing led to another and before she knew it she had moved in for the weekend, was rocking my old clothes and working that paintbrush like a like a good Universal helper does!!
In truth, she guided me towards the light, away from the millions of ideas splashed all over the walls, she guided me from the complexity of ideas… away from the dark and moody shades and BOOM we had it… simple ‘tie white’ … erm Farrow and Balls version of Magnolia (shhhh I didn’t say that!) also simply chosen from the same shade on our kitchen walls (talk about effortless decisions!)
As I began to paint the walls lighter and brighter, I felt like something was shifting inside of me. Each brush of the paint brought simplicity and peace to my soul. There was a sense of an internal transformation happening as something inside of me said ‘I deserve to have a nice home’.
As the hallway changed, I changed.
As I painted, I became fully present. I became aware of old habits of trying to rush to the next part just to get it done. Instead, I just enjoyed the moment, trusting that I would complete all I needed.
I let go of doing the entire stairs and landing (which are massive) and just aimed to do the entrance. I learned something BIG this weekend. For 15 years I have painted and decorated our house (in recent years we got decorators in). In the past I would set unrealistic goals and rush it. I was never fully present in decorating because I just wanted to get to the end of it! I was always thinking about the next part instead of just being where I was.
And so, once again, there was an opportunity to practice what I preached in an area that I had left unfinished… And, I felt satisfaction and contentment. Now, whenever I walk into my hallway I am reminded that:
In all of life, simplicity and being present is all anything ever needs. To stay in the here and now, not try and get somewhere quickly. In everything there is a lesson, in every moment there is a gift.