In Housework Blues, I describe the many wonderful benefits of The Housework Workout, (ie using housework as a form of exercise). Yet I’m not the first to suggest this idea. In fact, if you search for ‘housework’ on Amazon, one of the top results is the Housework Workout DVD*.
It’s a well-documented theory that the physical, aerobic nature of housework can reap rewards for your figure, especially when you carry out the work with an intention to trim/tone and you tweak your movements for maximum benefit. (For some quick tips on this check out this article from the NHS.)
Perhaps less well-known, however, are the invisible, ‘knock-on’ benefits that also occur when housework is your exercise of choice. So, if the prospect of thinner thighs is not quite enough to motivate you mop-wards, consider the following favourable, yet often unrecognised advantages of The Housework Workout…
Possibly the biggest advantage of The Housework Workout is the subtle but hugely beneficial attitude shift. When you view your chores as a route to health and fitness, you begin to see housework in a whole new (more positive) light.
By using essential maintenance tasks as workout-aids, you turn mundane work to your advantage. This is likely to reduce any resentment or the sense of futility that can sometimes accompany domestic jobs. (This aspect alone will do wonders for your happiness and well-being.)
For sanity’s sake
Exercise, in any form, is not only good for your physical health, it’s a real tonic for your mental health, too. But being on top of your domestic schedule brings an added psychological boost: it reduces stress or feelings of being overwhelmed that can occur when you’re struggling with housework. Eradicating any regular episodes of depression, frustration or despair will naturally result in a healthier mental state.
Any exercise undoubtedly improves your vitality. However, the state of your home can also seriously affect your energy levels. So, if your home is orderly and enjoyable (as a result of your new Housework Workout regime), you get a double-whammy energy-boost!
Plus, if you’re an advocate of Feng Shui, the Chi (positive energy) of a clean and well-kept home will create a wonderful ripple effect across all aspects of your life, including your health, love-life and career success.
By turning housework into your workout, you are multi-tasking. You’ll no longer need to shoehorn exercise into your timetable (or feel guilty about failing to squeeze it in…) By killing these two birds with one duster-wielding stone, you alleviate a little time-pressure, allowing more breathing space into your life. Not only that – you get to enjoy this extra free-time in a clean and tidy home!
It’s well known that exercise can be a great boost to your self-esteem. You’re more likely to feel better about yourself when you are in good shape. Looking good on the outside can really help you feel good on the inside. But with housework as your chosen path to health and gorgeousness, you get the not-to-be-underestimated bonus of a beautiful, well-kept home. Imagine the impact this has on your self-esteem when an unexpected guest calls and both you and your home are looking fabulous.
Wealth & fitness
Exercising at home saves a fortune in gym fees, fuel etc. Plus, if you’re the type who has to look the part (in public), there’s no need to splurge on designer workout gear.
However, when your home-based workout is your domestic schedule, you also save on equipment costs. Plus if you previously hired a cleaner or housekeeper, you’ll have less need for their services – yet another saving. So not only will you have more time on your hands, you could well have more funds to make the most of it.
(It has also been suggested that the state of your home is quite an accurate reflection of the state of your finances. So by cleaning up your abode, you could end up cleaning up at the bank, too.)
There you have it – the varied and wonderful hidden benefits of The Housework Workout. Good for your physical, mental and emotional health. Good for your self-esteem. Good for your relationships and family harmony. Even good for your bank account.
So why not give it a try? The worst that can happen is you end up with a tidier home and your housework done. More likely, though, The Housework Workout will leave you not only fit and fabulous, but more confident, happy and successful, too.
Good luck, and let me know how you get on!
Photo credit: Thomas Hamlyn-Harris at SXC