Origin of the word
The word chore is a variant of the Middle English word ‘chare’ meaning ‘odd job’. In the mid 18th century, the word in its current form emerged as a result of an alteration in dialect of the English word ‘char’, mainly in the United States. The first recorded use of the word chore was in 1746.
Chore is a noun that refers to a task that must be done every day, or nearly every day. It can also sometimes be used to refer to an unpleasant or boring activity: “She found dress shopping a tedious, awful chore.”
Though the word chore is often used to describe something disagreeable, a recent report seems to suggest that there may be hidden benefits in embracing these mundane tasks.
According to an article posted by CNBC, two of the richest people in the world claim to make one ordinary chore part of their daily routine. Billionaires Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and currently the world’s richest person, and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates are both fans of cleaning up after family dinners:
“‘I do the dishes every night,’ said Bezos, who’s currently worth almost $95 billion… Gates, who is currently the world’s second-richest man, not only does the dishes every night, he enjoys it.” CNBC.com Careers. 10 November 2017: Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates both do this mundane chore that may have significant mental benefits.
While it’s likely each person has his or her own reasons for taking on this specific chore, several independent studies have suggested that activities such as washing dishes or making the bed every day can have significant mental health benefits.
Researchers at Florida State University and the University of California, Santa Barbara in the US found in two separate studies that subjects who did mindless chores were able to reduce stress levels and engage in problem-solving. In the UK, researchers at the University of Central Lancashire found that doing chores helped their subjects think more creatively.
1. an ordinary job that must be done regularly
2. an unpleasant, boring, or difficult thing that must be done
View the full definition in the Macmillan Dictionary.