Ever since I was old enough to reach the sink on a stool, I’ve washed dishes. And since then, I’ve had a hard time enjoying it, or even just feeling okay with doing them. Alas, everyone knows that with cooking comes mountains of dishes, but there IS a way to get the dishes done without pulling your hair out or losing your mind. And you don’t even have to own a dishwasher to utilize these tips.
Organize the Dishes
Usually if the counter next to the sink doesn’t look like a monster about to swallow you up, it’s a lot easier to relax while washing the dishes. It’s as simple as stacking the plates and placing the utensils in a pile.
Wash the Dishes in Order
Guess what? There’s an order to washing dishes. Washing the dishes in order not only eases the nerves, it also has a purpose. If you wash the greasy/insanely dirty pans first, your hot soapy water will be all nasty—and you DO NOT want to wash your glasses in that.
• Start with the glasses, so they are washed in the cleanest water.
• Next, wash the plates and bowls (that are used to eat on). Meanwhile, place your silverware in the bottom of the sink so they’re easier to clean when you get around to them.
• Get the silverware done next, and make sure that the spaces between the fork tines are clean.
• Now wash the serving dishes.
• Wash any cooking utensils like wooden spoons or measuring cups next.
• Save the pots and pans for last. If there’s caked-on food or grease, you may want to let them soak in hot soapy water for a few hours to loosen it some.
Add Essential Oils to Your Soap
There are many essential oils that you can add to your dish soap to make it smell great and also for aromatherapy purposes. I like to use Wild Orange essential oil because when I use it, I feel a lot happier, cheerful, and relaxed. Lemon essential oil is great for obvious reasons, but any citrus essential oils work amazingly. I have personally found adding essential oils to my soap really works when I’m trying to chill out and not lose my marbles.
Have a Helper
Having someone help you wash the dishes (or even having someone dry them) can be a heavy weight lifted off your shoulders. While cleaning, you can chat, laugh, listen to music, sing a silly song, or whatever! It’s a lot easier to relax and de-stress when you got a friend or family member helping you through it.
After about a while of following these guidelines and tips, I’ve found washing dishes to be more of a joy than a dread. Washing the dishes may not always seem like the most exciting activity, and while it does have to be done at some point, it doesn’t have to be a painful and stressful process.
I have an 13 year old daughter who is actually willing to learn how to wash dishes. I would definitely make her read this blog.
When I don’t feel like washing the dishes or think someone else should be dong it instead of me I think of a movie I saw once. It is called “The Ghost of Dickens’ Past”. In the movie Dickens was having a mental block in writing his next book that ended up being The Christmas Carol. He makes a comment near the end of the movie when someone asked him why Dickens did a nice deed for their family who was in need – “You needed it and I needed to do it.” Sometimes I need to do it just because it needs to be done and I can work on my humility and sometimes I can remember that I have dishes to wash, and food to eat that made these dishes dirty and I can have a clean kitchen when I’m done. Some people don’t get to eat everyday, don’t have a place to even wash dishes, or arms to wash them with, or a nice house to sit back and look at when the room is clean. This helps me get over it real quick. And then while you are praising God for all these things you do have, your spirits will rise and the bad spirits will flee.
Margaret Anne says
I’m speechless. You make a good point. I’ll remember that next time I don’t feel like washing the dishes or doing anything else I don’t want to do. Thanks, Nana!
I’m really not into washing dishes and live alone so I can’t palm the job off on anyone else. It’s not too bad if I keep on top of it but if there are only a couple of things to wash up I think: “why bother”, next thing I know I’ve run out of crockery and can’t reach the kettle because of all the dirty dishes. I find playing music helps the job get done faster though.