Can Washing Dishes Relieve Stress?
Stop complaining about washing the dishes. It can actually help relieve stress, according to new research published in the journal Mindfulness.
Researchers at Florida State University concluded that "mindful" dishwashing, where you focus on the smell of the soap, feel of the dishes, and warmth of the water, can have a positive impact on your mental health.
A total of 51 college students were recruited to wash dishes. Half of the students were required to read a descriptive passage about dishwashing, while the other half read a mindful passage about dishwashing, emphasizing the need to be mentally focused on the task at hand.
After students completed dishwashing, researchers assessed their state of mindfulness. They found that the mindful group experienced a 27 percent reduction in nervousness and a 25 percent increase in mental inspiration and overall, a more positive state of mind, when compared to the ones who just read a descriptive passage.
Researchers want to focus on other day-to-day chores, but this study may provide a new way to begin to think about stress reduction.