Your surroundings affects you strongly. If you were living with someone who abused you or worked with someone who criticized you, for example, it would be difficult for you to be freely ourselves and find peace of mind in your space.
Same goes for our physical surroundings, for example, stale air, minimal light, and clutter affect our mood, our energy, and our relationships. It could have us feeling depressed, alone, and stuck.
Take a look at your space.
“Our homes are powerful energy attractors. Feng Shui teaches that by balancing and enhancing the energy in our living space, our lives will come into alignment as well.” Erica Sofrina
For our mental health, we have to practice let go of stuck emotions and invite peace and light in. I am a firm believer that doing this with our outer environment will help this process. Keep your window shades open during the day, and even get fresh air when the weather permits.
Open up your curtains, air out your house whenever you can, and de-clutter your home and office! You will feel like a new person.
De-cluttering may seem daunting, but once you start, it can take on its own momentum. Get rid of a bag of clothes, and you’ll get a burst of energy. You use that to do the next thing.
De-clutter your space
How do you start to de-clutter your home? Carole Hyder, a Feng Shui expert and author of Conversations with Your Home, suggests the following tips:
- Move twenty-seven objects within the same room that haven’t been moved in over a year. (This gets the stagnant energy moving.)
- Remove everything from the front and sides of the refrigerator for 9 days. (Keeps stimulation in the kitchen to a minimum.)
- Give away one bag of clothing each week for nine weeks.
- Donate books to charity in multiples of nine. ( Nine, eighteen, twenty-seven, etc.)
- Throw out nine files on your desk that you no longer need, and the next day, deal with nine more.
- If the whole house is cluttered, begin in your bedroom.
- Eliminate clutter near the front door (to invite in opportunity).
- Leave the top of your fireplace mantle or dresser completely empty for nine days.
- Start small.
My home is relatively clutter free, and I will let you in on my secret motto: If you can’t do everything, do something.
Let go of perfectionism
I spend zero time worrying about having a perfectly clean house, and instead of worrying, I take action. While I go outside to feed the chickens, I take the empty jars down. If I have a moment, I sneak in sorting through and recycling the mail. Even two minutes before the bus comes, you still find me putting away half the laundry quick-quick. Lunches are readied while putting away the leftover dinner. When leaving the kitchen, I take that broken toy that has been on the counter all week and glue it together. Price tags from the new shirt go right in the recycle bin instead of on the dresser. Used tissues go right in the garbage.
My friend worked at a restaurant way back in college, and I remember him telling me that their rule was to always have two hands full when they went into or out of the kitchen. Dirty dishes in, new food out. I follow this advice. Whether I am going up and down the stairs or walking around my house, I often have my hands full of something that belongs in that direction.
My best trick is to get rid of things I don’t need, right away. There are bins everywhere to drop used clothing. Don’t keep bags behind your couch for weeks until you have all the closets cleaned out before you donate the big lot of them. Even if you just have a few things, keep the bag of them in your car and keep an eye out for a donation drop-off place. If you find a few more things next week, you can do the same, since it took practically no effort.
Keeping your space tidy
With my busy schedule, I cannot do everything, so I just keep doing some things and they make a difference. Guests that enter often comment on how they feel peace by entering.
My home and office have also been balanced for the last several years by Feng Shui Master Louisa Ong-Lee. Just her subtle suggestions on placement have made a huge difference. Wouldn’t it be great if healing happens just by being home?
Feng Shui is specific to the people and to the building, so it is hard to have generalities. However, here are some basics that Louisa has taught me over the years:
- Good energy can be sucked down the toilet! Literally. Close the toilet lid when not in use and keep the bathroom door closed even when no one is in there. Also keep anything spiritual and inspirational out of the bathroom, including walls opposite the bathroom (adjacent rooms).
- If you want to fall in love or stay in love, make sure all birds in your decor are in pairs. Carefully make sure they face each other!
- In all dining areas, have a bowl of shells on the table. Pictures or representations of fruit, especially fruit on vines, enhance food abundance. It is OK to have a mirror reflect the table to multiply this abundance, but if you do, never do bills at that table!
- Dried flowers are not appropriate to keep. They are stagnant, dead energy.
- Decorate your entrances to invite opportunity.
- Put things you love around you.
- Make sure under your bed is de-cluttered, and this includes keeping tidy the room under your bed.
- No plants in your bedroom.
- Surround yourself with things that you love: pets, people, meaningful trinkets, an altar, nature. Then dispose of the things that do not nourish you.
Spend more time outside!
Healing is about returning to our natural selves–who we were before all of the stress of our lives caused us all sorts of physical and emotional problems. Doesn’t it make sense that spending time in nature can help us remember how to be natural? How to heal?
Take a look at your space. How is it affecting you? What’s one thing can you do differently?