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New Carpet: No Shoes

Jan 22, 2019 07:59PM ● By Kirsten Klug
We got new carpet. It looks amazing! And, since it is so clean and bright, we decided to make a new rule: NO SHOES!

You would think that would be an easy habit to change. But I've realized that it takes a whole new mindset as well.

Research says that taking your shoes off and leaving them at the door can help reduce allergies and toxins. There are so many germs that we walk through that live on the bottom of our shoes. Shoes seperate your feet from the ground, so wearing them in the home brings in what we normally wouldn't want to be walking in bare feet. And without the grime from our shoes, our houses remain cleaner and more welcoming for families to sit on the ground.

In some cultures, taking your shoes off is a custom that goes back to ancient civilization, when the homes were built above the ground. The elevation gave ventilation and seperated the home from the ground. So, stepping up meant you were entering a private space and honoring their presence. In Asia most homes either have steps up to the main lobby or small entryway.

What I have noticed in the last few days of creating the new habit is that it isn't just a one-step process. No Shoes means I need to think ahead and give myself a couple more minutes to get in and out the door. I can't rush in and out like I used to. I have to pause, untie, go inside. Then upon wanting to exit, I need to sit down or bend over and put the shoes back on. My son once had challenges tying his shoes and now I can see he is going to get a lot more practice... unless of course, he wears shoes without laces!

Three simple tips for enjoying the process of putting shoes on and off:
1. Breathe into the moment. Enjoy the break and the stretch down and up. Maybe even add a few more stretches for your lower back and backs of your legs.

2. Enjoy all your senses! Smell the fresh air and feel the soft new carpet on your feet! Even reach down to feel it with your hands. Heck, lay on it and roll around like a kid or a dog would do.

3. Make a game out of putting your shoes on and off. Time yourself. Have a contest with your kids to see who is the fastest or slowest. Or let your kids tie your shoes. Make sure to check first as you never know they may mix up the strings and tie them together!

And simply enjoy the newness of it all!