Tag Archives: de-cluttering

Unplanned De-Cluttering

My unplanned de-cluttering began with an email. The Feng Shui Institute of the Midwest was organizing a fundraiser in memory of two spouses and one member who had passed from cancer. All members were invited to bring any Feng Shui books and related items no longer wanted to exchange for donations to cancer research.

Spring de-cluttering had not yet entered my mind and, if it had, my home office bookcase would not have been on the list! Interesting how quickly one’s attention can be focused where it had not before. I took a look at the bookcase housing my Feng Shui books and decided to dig in – one shelf at a time!

Because, like many of us, I’m not one who is able to casually discard an item – clothing, household goods, books, etc. I find the Feng Shui method of approaching clutter clearing tremendously helpful! First, review its function in your life, discerning if it continues to have a valid purpose: Does it still fit? Do you still use it? Does it continue to bring you pleasure? Books are tough! They are old friends! So, I sat on the floor with my old friends piled around me. As I picked up each one, lovingly looking at its cover before slowly flipping through the pages, memories flooded back of my excitement when I first began the study of Feng Shui! It was an incredibly rich time in my life – access to “new” ancient knowledge and the formation of new lifelong friendships!

Many of the books were filled with underlining and notes in the margins, as I was voraciously trying to absorb all I was learning at the time. And now, 20 years later, the time had come to bless and release. I don’t know how many Feng Shui books I have, but, suffice it to say, my bookcase remains mostly full after saying farewell to 38 of them!

TibetanAltar02aIt was fun to attend the fundraiser and see what each person had brought. There were lots of books and other wonderful Feng Shui related items! While tempting, I stayed true to my intention of not bringing anything home. Oh, except for one – a beautiful pop-up book of Tibetan Buddhist Altars! Thank you to the person who released it!

 If you keep something that you’re not using…then no one else can use it, either. Author unknown

After returning home, I spent the remainder of the day organizing that particular bookcase. IBookcase01 cleaned and re-arranged the remaining books.The next day, I purchased a new floor lamp which I placed next to the bookcase. Clearing out releases old energy and allows clarity to the area in question. In fact, my Feng Shui bookcase sits, intentionally, in the Knowledge, Wisdom and Self-Improvement area of my office. Clutter in this area of the Bagua can limit your ability to learn, make wise decisions, and improve yourself. That must have needed attention, thus the FSIM email!

Clutter is a weight that has built on top of you so gradually, you don’t even realize anymore that it is holding you down. Mary Johanson, maryorganizes.com

I wasn’t done! That office project led to another interesting area of de-cluttering – my computer emails. During the time of my injury, my ability to be on my computer for any length of time was severely restricted for the better part of a year. As a result, emails accumulated – 16,400 of them! Talk about electronic clutter! So I decided to tackle the unseen clutter in my computer, which is located in the Family and Community area of my office. This area represents our family of origin: parents, ancestors and siblings. It also represents any group that comes together for a common cause: people with whom you work, your church, a book club, etc. Clutter here can cause problems with superiors, authority figures and parents, as well as within your family or community as a whole. While I’m not experiencing any difficulties in this realm of my life, as so often is the case in Feng Shui, attention to this area may have prevented any potential complications.

I am happy to report I brought those 16,400 emails down to zero! Part of this huge undertaking included unsubscribing to resources that provide instruction and support for spiritual enlightenment. In my ongoing quest for spiritual growth, I had been accumulating them for years. Again, I applied the Feng Shui process of reviewing whether these resources still have purpose in my life and discerning if they continue to provide meaningful information for my continuing personal growth and development. These questions speak to a seldom-identified subliminal reason for clutter: Identity. We often hold on to items that remind us of who we used to be. The important question, of course, is “Am I still that same person?”

 Self-reflection is the first step to decluttering because it’s not about the stuff. Author unknown

 Perhaps clearing the energy in my area of self-wisdom and adding additional light enabled me toDancer recognize and own the wisdom I have gained through the years. This recognition freed me to bless and unsubscribe from many of those sites, making space for other higher conscious information to show up! Now, when I look at my emails, I see four or five rather than thousands! A huge weight has been lifted! My Chi is significantly lighter! We never know what might show up to motivate a shift in our energy. A casual email invitation turned out to be a powerful motivator for unplanned de-cluttering!

A Tease of Wood Energy

Sprout2Do you get as excited as I do at the tease of Wood energy emerging around us? When there is a snow melt, brown is the predominant color, however, if you look closely, you will notice that tease of wood energy –little green seedlings just beginning to peek out of the ground. The Feng Shui Five Element Theory follows nature’s cycle, transitioning from the Water Element that represents Winter and moving into the Wood Element of Spring. When spring finally arrives in Minnesota, that Wood energy erupts in full form as our gardens bloom and tree buds burst open!

I love when garden centers begin offering classes about the newest annuals and perennials. Anything that appears to bring Spring a bit closer and reminds me that I will soon feel nurtured by working in the soil is most welcome. Of course, I realize that won’t happen for about two more months, given our Minnesota weather season.

I enjoyed gardening at my previous home, but when I moved into my town home years ago, there was no gardening opportunity. The landscaping consisted of shrubs and rock, requiring no upkeep. After all, isn’t that what town home living is about? But after that first summer I recognized a void in my life; my hands were literally aching to get back into the soil. It was then I became acutely aware that gardening was not just a hobby for me but an intrinsic need.

I knew nothing of Feng Shui in those days, but I intuitively knew I had to create a small garden in an area by my front door. I spent hours hauling out rock, removing shrubs and amending the soil. My new little flower garden was appealing both from my front door and from the road. I learned years later, from a Feng Shui perspective, this was ideal. That garden enhanced my front door and attracted positive chi into my home!

I quickly discovered that one small garden was not enough for me, so I began extending theWheelB garden around my town home. I continued laboriously hauling away wheelbarrows full of rock, digging up old shrubs and amending the clay soil. I spent hours planning what and where to plant. It has taken years to develop my garden, and, as all of you gardeners know all too well, it is always a work in progress! With new annuals and perennials being introduced every year, the choices become intoxicating and endless.

My previous home was on an acre, allowing me to have several areas for gardens. I loved impulse garden shopping and experimenting with a variety of perennials and annuals! There was always room for everything I brought home. Those plants that did great in the garden were neighbors to those that didn’t do so well, but it didn’t matter.

My current gardens are too small to be forgiving with plants that don’t thrive and, with ever increasing choices, I have learned to make tough decisions. I’ve become increasingly ruthless! A plant that ceases to delight is quickly removed! I recycle the rejects to my gardening friends who have more gardening space than I do. It’s a significant type of Feng Shui de-cluttering. It also speaks to the Feng Shui principle that reminds us to have in our space that which we have room for and love.

So, as this tease of wood entices us to dream about our garden – big or small, a flower box or balcony pots – remember to be intentional and have only what delights your eye!


Happy Spring!

“Spring drew on…and a greenness grew over those brown beds, which, freshening daily, suggested the thought that Hope traversed them at night, and left each morning brighter traces of her steps.” ― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre