What if I told you that everything you do can be considered art. The way you wash dishes, how you organize your home, the plants you have filling your home, or making cookies. Everything is art.
This idea came to me in a coffee shop with a good friend as we talked about the arts in Japanese culture. The tea ceremony, the perfection of making miso (A minimum of 1-year production), the architecture, the list could go on and on. What I realized is that the old Japanese way of living was on to something, they saw everything they did as a form of art. When done with thought and patience they could create something beautiful, and experience that would affect every one of the 5-senses. Something as simple as pouring a cup of tea and enjoying its aroma and flavor is now a form of art.
What a beautiful way to look at the world. To see magic in the everyday just by slowing down enough to put your full attention into what you’re doing. To think through the entire experience with all five senses in mind. This is the true meaning of art. It doesn’t have to be a painting of a sculpture, just something that was created with intention.
As I slow down in my world and pay attention to the little things, I’m seeing art form all around me. From making gifts for my nieces and nephews to taking my art to baked goods. I can now use all areas of my life as a way to make art. I simply show appreciation for what’s in front of me. I stay present to the task at hand. And my thoughts are always on the end experience for the person enjoying the creation.
This same way of thinking can be applied to washing dishes (which I hate doing). As I clean each dish I can think about the joy I’ll get when plating it the next time we eat. Or about the experience of seeing these beautiful dishes on a table when friends and family join us for a meal. If I stop thinking about all that I have to do and instead, think about the experience I’m creating just by doing this small mundane task, I can do it with more pride and more joy. In the end, I can create something I’m proud of–a clean canvas to create meals and memories.
Everything is art. Each task that you’re given each day can be done with thought. Be present while you’re doing it. Slow down enough to notice your own senses while you do it. And see what experiences you can create not only for those around you but also for yourself as you do tasks you might otherwise dread. How can you turn the everyday into art?