I have several daunting things on my To Do list, one of which is removing weeds that have encroached upon the driveway. We have a few different methods for weeding; there’s the natural spray of vinegar, water and dish soap, and flame weeding, where you hook-up a fire wand to the gas grill canister and literally incinerate the weeds (very cool, and very hot). Alas, neither of those methods work as effectively or as long as pulling them out manually.
This could easily be one of those Big chores, like the pile of dishes after a dinner party, or shoveling the driveway after a snow storm, or stacking 2 cords of wood (I live in Vermont after all) – the ones that can elicit a sigh of dread or resignation. But as daunting as all these big tasks are, they don’t have to be arduous. In fact, they can be easy and fun with a simple shift of energy.
Our brains are quick to evaluate and judge, geeze, that’s a big pile of dishes, or, ugh I have a full day of back-to-back meetings. Those thoughts carry with them energy, which can make the tasks heavier and a burden.
Getting in the habit of keeping the anticipation of activities neutral, or even positive, instead of assigning them a negative value judgement in advance, can go a long way to your enjoyment of the experience. In fact, you can easily manipulate your perception of the experience by actively reframing a chore or task to be much more pleasurable.
Instead of the usual energy behind a dreaded task, try on these reframes:
- I’m curious about how this is going to go
- What would make this more fun?
- Let me give this my full attention
- Let’s see how well I can do this
- Let me be intuitively guided as to the best way to approach this
- Let this be easy
Let this be easy is my new mantra for so many tasks. It provides and instant attitude reframe, and makes me more curious. It also acknowledges that every goal has a process of attainment, and that if we enjoy the process, the goal will be that much easier to attain.
I’m actually looking forward to tackling those weeds in the driveway, because I know it’s going to be easy.