February 8th marked the Chinese Lunar New Year and the year of the Monkey. One of the great traditions of Chinese New Year is to clean the house as a way to sweep out the “old” in order to usher in the new. It’s a time for fresh beginnings, so if you didn’t start January 2016 off as you intended, now’s your chance to clear your clutter and put into practice some Feng Shui basic principles to harmonize your home.
The ancient Chinese art of Feng Shui (Wind- Water) helps create environments that are balanced and harmonious by improving Chi or Energy flow throughout the home. As a home organizer and space planner, I apply some basic principles of Feng Shui of placement, light, color and flow to design living spaces for my clients that are purposeful, organized and inviting. By following some of the more simple laws of Feng Shui, you can create a home that allows for maximum positive Chi and joy.
Clear The Clutter
While there’s much complexity to the art and practice of Feng Shui, experts and practitioners all agree that a first and very important step to getting started on a path of improved harmony of your living spaces is to remove clutter. In Feng Shui, clutter serves as an obstacle to balance and a blocker of good energy. The sooner you get rid of it, the sooner your home spaces can thrive.
For many, dealing with clutter is easier said than done, but if you want more Good Fortune and Peace of Mind, then make room for it! Start with any room, drawer or closet in your house that feels stifling and begin clearing out clutter. Set aside some time and find the inner strength to make decisions to get rid of what you don’t need, use or love. If it’s in good shape, donate it or pass it on to a friend. If something is in disrepair or broken, throw it away. You may find that by letting go, new and better things will find their way to you.
Some common areas where clutter amasses and are easy to ignore are “junk” drawers filled with random keys, home hardware bits and pieces, and other odds and ends. This is a good place to start. For clearing this clutter, remember: if it doesn’t serve a purpose, lose it. Next, go through your medicine cabinet and safely toss out expired medication and beauty products you no longer use.
If you want to feel more productive while you work, clear the paper clutter on your desk, followed by a purge of computer files you no longer reference. By de-cluttering your desk and computer files, you will instantly feel lightness and improved concentration.
Improve Energy & Flow For A Happy Home
If a room in your home is feeling stuffy or stuck, the first order of business is to declutter. Once you’ve removed any non-essentials, look at ways to rearrange furnishings so that your rooms are welcoming and have an ease of flow. Make them beautiful by adding pieces of art, good lighting and just the right amount of accessories.
Bedrooms are a sacred space for rest and should be a clutter-free zone in your home. Activate restful sleep and improve flow by removing energy blockers such as under-the-bed storage. For better harmony, make sure that your bed is accessible from both sides. Symmetry is important, too, so place nightstands and lamps on both sides of a bed. Balance is the name of the game here.
Are you a shoes off household? Make sure you don’t let them pile up by the door, as this blocks energy and good fortune from entering your home. If you don’t have a closet where you can put a shoe rack, use a shoe cabinet like this one from Ikea to keep shoes hidden and tidy, and yet still close to your entryway.
Easy Feng Shui Principles To Try Today
- Add plants for vibrancy and clean air.
- Open your windows-let the sunshine and fresh air in!
- Make your bed every morning.
- Keep the toilet lid closed and close the bathroom door to keep chi from “going down the toilet”.
- Empty your trash cans often. Don’t let garbage or recycling pile up.
- Make sure the doors in your home open all the way, and keep hallways and passageway clutter-free
In this year of the Monkey, commit to clearing your clutter in order to transform and improve the energy of your physical spaces. By applying these Feng Shui basics, your home will feel lighter, happier and more harmonious.