Shoes at the Door

photo by Karen Muktayani Villanueva

It is a fairly straightforward and simple practice, to remove your shoes at the door.  It is a common practice in Asian countries, and depending on what part of the United States you find yourself in, it may not be a a familiar custom.

It is a good idea that promotes wellness on the physical, psychological, emotional, relational, and environmental levels. On the practical, it’s less dirt in your home. Less dirt means needing to clean less. Less time doing housework means more time to read a book, play with your kids, or take your dog out for a run.

Taking the time to remove your shoes at the door also gives us a chance to pause and formally acknowledge transition in our busy, busy lives. It invites the possibility of shifting our energetic state before we enter our homes. Especially for those of us who work outside our homes, we can shed our workday’s stressors at the door, leave them with our shoes, and we can be better present to what really matters and what it means to be home.

No matter if you live in an urban or rural environment, pathogens and germs are everywhere. It is best not to track them in the place where you go to rest and rejuvenate, especially if it is avoidable. Those of us with toddlers (or friends that have toddlers) know that they spend the majority of their time exploring the world via floor and oral fixation. Not to mention, the two second rule almost always applies in our homes. Better not to increase the chances of making an entire household sick, right?

Removing your shoes at the door cultivates a sense of caring for oneself, others, and your living space.  It is a simple act that promotes your own wellness and those that you live with. That is a habit worth cultivating.


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