One of the things that always captivates me during a tea ceremony is the thoughtfulness that goes behind every movement. This is no exaggeration – every single tiny movement is orchestrated. The intention is to create beauty that the guest who is being served tea, can enjoy. These movements create a sense of mindfulness and take the guest out of the day to day and into a world of beauty.
When I first began studying tea ceremony I found this somewhat tedious. I believe it was my third class where we spent three hours sitting on tatami mat floors and learned to fold the fukusa - a cloth used during tea ceremony to purify the objects being used. We did this over and over. My knees and feet hurt. It was a cool grey day with rain falling outside the traditional Japanese sliding wood doors. My hands were numb. What I really wanted to do was get off of my knees and curl up in a corner for a nap.
But then, like everything else worth taking time for in life, it began to come together. Suddenly I realized the beauty in the little movements what I was learning. These movements, when put together, create a beautiful ritual that is almost like watching dance.
Recently I thought I would cut back on tea classes. Even though it was something I have wanted to learn for years, it really is tedious and challenging. But after giving it thought, I realized that I was learning so much about an ancient, mindful, beautiful tradition and in such a serene, gorgeous setting. And then I remembered a saying by Earl Nightingale: “Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.”
“The time will pass anyway”…… I believe I mentioned this about a week ago in another journal entry. This has always been my attitude towards self-care. So often I hear women say they don’t have the time for a bath, or even a shower ritual. I’m going to be blunt (and I am saying this with love), the idea that someone can’t find one hour a week is nonsense. It’s all about prioritizing and planning. Work, friends, and even children, can live without us for an hour, especially if the hour is used to better ourselves.
Think about the benefits of scheduling a one hour bathing ritual per week: a calm mind, a release of tension, a feeling of sanctuary, time to clear and rest your mind. Your breathing will slow down, your mind and body will relax, your spirits will lift, and at the end of it, you will be a better person.
Through my decision to step out of my comfort zone and continue studying tea ceremony, I hope I can encourage you to take a step out of your comfort zone and plan one hour a week for a bath, or even start with a shower ritual with Shower Mochi if that’s easier. I always find that when we push past the part of doing something we don’t want to do but know deep down we should, life changes for the better and we are rewarded for our efforts.
Wondering where to begin? Start by exploring some of my favorite ritual for the bath, shower, home, and beyond: DISCOVER THEM HERE.