simple shui | when clutter is actually a good thing

here’s something you don’t hear often: there are times in your life when clutter is a GOOD thing.

to understand what i mean, let’s talk yin/yang quickly. yin and yang are unseen forces that attract each other, creating movement. think of yin like a noun – it is receptive, still, and quiet; think of yang as a verb – it is creative, active, and obvious. a balance of both is the complete sentence, shifting and changing the energy around us.

because clutter often sits idly without regular use or purpose, it has a very yin quality to it. too much yin in our surroundings can make life feel sluggish, which is why clutter is often considered a sneaky saboteur in our lives.

however, when we find ourselves without the gravity of safety or reassurance, a little more yin energy might be exactly the prescription we need. sometimes, we need a minute to dissect what’s happening in our lives. so, if you’ve struggled with letting things go or wonder why clutter accumulates, this might be for you:

if you do dangerous work for a living; if you leave an abusive or toxic relationship; or if you have survived a trauma, clutter becomes a form of physical insulation. and regardless of trends or movements, this is not a good time to strip that excess away because the clutter is serving a purpose. it is part of a support system, helping to soften the edges of vulnerability and exposure. clutter isn’t meant to be a permanent coping solution; however, until the emotional bondage subsides, we aren’t making decisions from a place of power, so clearing clutter will feel like an inflammatory process.

little kids are wide-eyed from digesting information all day long because everything is a brand new experience. from their perspective, the world is very yang: it feels big, sometimes alarming, and certainly reprieve-worthy. by natural instinct, they self-soothe by creating nests of their own with stuffed animals, found treasures, and promising trinkets. while their collections might seem like clutter, it is how they nourish and nurture their systems and souls. instead of editing through their things, begin having regular conversations about their stuff and s/he will learn not to rely on his things for confidence.

yang is synonymous with independence and a desire to hurdle forward – or in a word, teenagers. if clutter is camping out around yours, resist the urge to invade! their stuff fuels a sense of security and self-expression. teenagers have little control at this point in their lives – school, money, and personal freedom are all dictated by others. allow yours this rebellion and control of her/his bedroom floor. instead, strike a balance between their creative expressions and a few house rules for structure.

cleaning up is an essential part of life – much like a really deep exhalation. however, its equally necessary counterpart is the satisfying inhalation – and that comes from play and chaos. neatniks and perfectionists, this is for you! if we obsess over the vacuuming, dusting, and all-consuming maintenance; when we are fastidious about every single detail in a room, keeping them perfectly presentable; if we spend most our time organizing and staging, we strangle our creative freedom and become rigid, disengaged, or even anxious because nothing is happening. chaos is a required part of life – it’s where self-expression happens. a little clutter here and there releases us from perfectionism’s dictatorship so we can relax into a life that is sometimes mess.

clients will sometimes do a deep purge right before an organizational or feng shui consult, sort of like finally having the house you love when you prep it to sell. so, hear me, hear me: if you decide to hire a designer, an organizer, or shui practitioner to help you eliminate what’s not working, we ask you to trust us and let us see what your house really looks like. if you do, the professional you’ve hired will provide a new way of understanding and using your space so you can release the clutter and the patterns that keep it in place.

 

so, if not now, when do you clear the clutter? when you begin to feel crammed in your space. maybe you suddenly feel like the walls are closing in on you. perhaps you’re craving a fresh change finally. when those feelings percolate, you are ready to impose momentum by letting go of what you no longer need. until then, remember this: de-cluttering advice isn’t a one-size fits all solution – you (and only you) choose when you’re ready to hit the accelerator and embrace a new beginning.

simple shui | these bedroom cures are everything

malcolm gladwell said, “anyone who has ever scanned the bookshelves of a new girlfriend or boyfriend – or peeked inside her or his medicine cabinet – understands this implicitly; you can learn as much – or more – from one glance at a private space as you can from hours of exposure to a public face.”

i find this to be exceptionally true. whether a bedroom is cluttered, reflective of only one partner’s personality + preferences, or the room with the least proof of devotion in a house, these choices are very revealing. because a bedroom tells me within a glance what you think you’re worth.

let’s talk about the trinity within this sacred space – SLEEP + STILLNESS + SENSUALITY. when we devote to these, our bedrooms feel magnificent and that transcends into the world LOVING us back, beloveds.

so, where to start?

SIMPLIFY. the focus of our bedroom deserves to be the bed. not the TV. or the treadmill. or the dresser. without the distractions, our bed feels welcoming and that harnesses the best energy for our exclusive benefit. simplify your space and watch your life expand.

SPLURGE. if ever there is an excuse to INDULGE, this is it! the two biggest investments i made in our bedroom were the linen headboard + bed and our linen sheets. now, i know the kneejerk response is “I don’t have the money to splurge.” truth? i didn’t either when i made the decision, but quality isn’t impulsive – it’s intentional. and sometimes that means intentionally saving money and watching for a good sale. all you have to do is make the commitment, and your hot little heart will be in pursuit of the perfect thing to set your soul on fire!

and before you hop over the whole headboard idea, if you feel at all alone. . .

or without reliable support in your life. . .

or your sense of self + inner strength is compromised. . .

BUY THE HEADBOARD. headboards are a powerful metaphor of support. and if you’re shopping for one, a solid headboard is most ideal. slatted boards can create a sense of separation from our beloved. however, if this is the headboard you’ve got, here’s a simple cure: tie a ribbon around the two middle vertical bars and you’ll unite any sense of division.

LET LOVE RULE. when confronted with i-can’t-find-my-person woes, i ask one simple Q: tell me about your room. usually something in the bedroom unwittingly anchors strong single energy. common culprits i’ve encountered: photos of a client by herself; silhouette art; a single bedside table; a bed pushed up against the wall, signifying one person’s side of the bed. you feel me, right? if you want partnership, express that all around you in the bedroom. and, top if off with a pair of rose quartz – the crystal with an affinity for LOVE energy. meow!

HOLD SPACE FOR HARMONY. round shapes promote fluid communication + healthy relationships, so i am all about curvy lamps, drum lampshades, round candles, deep button tufts on furniture, circle rugs, a bowl with a few round stones. . . whatever feels right to you.

TREASURE YOURSELF. think of wind and water – especially during a summer drought. water becomes stagnant and unsafe, eventually drying up. without wind, the air is stifling. those energy qualities are mimicked in a room where clutter convenes. in our bedrooms, this specifically translates into waking up groggy and never quite refreshed. and, when we’ve been sick, it can interfere with our ability to rebound back to good health. a good rule of thumb is if energy can’t fully circulate, our energy suffers.

a luxurious bedroom is not synonymous with expensive or spacious; rather, it is about drenching this sacred space with beauty the way you see it. when we choose to love our bedroom, it makes an irrepressible statement that we prioritize our own felicity. little by little, this kind of steady living has a cumulative effect. and in a room that nourishes sleeping deeper and waking more refreshed, we find ourselves – mind, body, and spirit – restored.

xo

simple shui | Q + A

“What feng shui advice would you suggest if someone has the following amount to spend: $10, $75, or $150?”

 

$10: wander into a local grocer and check out the fresh flower selection. there are often a variety of bouquets priced for less than $10. flowers aren’t waiting for someone who “deserves” them; they are there for whomever is willing to allow beauty in their lives. so, decide what you’re comfortable spending, and simply go look. shui loves to play this game, and there is usually a bundle priced perfectly for you!

$75: the front door is where we entice auspicious energy into our homes. and to be clear, this is the architecturally-intended front door of a house. energy goes where the eye does so it’s worth the endeavor to make the entrance entrancing. it is the simplest way to invite promising opportunities into our lives. guaranteed. 💕💕💕

easy upgrades: replace any burned out lights with brighter wattage. wipe down the door and its hardware. buy a new doormat, or shake out the one you currently use. change the doorbell! infuse the front path/porch with color and fragrance. pathways are analogous to opportunities finding their way to us, and healthy plants or bright flowers elevate beauty and suggest good health. maintain both, and it’s a magnetic invitation to whatever you desire welcoming in your life. hang a wind chime — when the wind blows, the pirouetting rods harness invisible and wildly good energy for you. and as the wind chime sings, it draws attention to the space, inviting more opportunities in your life.

$150: when we leave the same stuff on our walls for years and become numb to the feeling they generate, the walls lack that aliveness they once had – and that contributes to how you feel. take everything off the walls at least once a year, let the space breathe, and decide what you want to put back. and if your gallery is growing lackluster, it is time for change! be gutsy. make a statement. say something controversial. rethink those first impressions. there is inexhaustible magic in the joy we feel seeing something new and different – a single glance creating a visceral response that ripples positive energy around us.. xo

simple shui | happy halloween

if you haven’t joined the simple shui™ party happening on alexa + amazon, it’s time to moonwalk over and join me! i am sharing shui tricks + treats + truths you want! you need!! you can’t live without – haha!!! so, how about a whiff of the shui being served daily  – and just in time for Halloween!

this ditty i found in my notes from a call years ago with my mentor and friend, ellen. once upon a time, my lovelies would be so scared to go out on Halloween night, so she told me to send them trick-or-treating with a favorite piece of clothing underneath their costumes. simple and it reinforces feeling safe from all the things going bump in the night! if you want to mom-ify this a little more, encourage yours to choose something in a light color to balance out the dark palette and gestures of this holiday.

salt is one of nature’s most yang elements – and it offers protection from unwanted energy. so, whether it is at a festive party or on Halloween night, salt is a good thing to have on hand when good and questionable energies collide. instead of simply leaving bowls of salt out, however, let’s make this more glamorous. use himalayan salt candle holders to set the mood and keep negative ions (nature’s feel good vibes!) floating through the air! #winwinwin

wealth begins with a consciousness of abundance. you have to see it to receive it, so use the excuse of candy season to stock up on + hand out gold covered chocolate coins! how’s that for delicious and auspicious?

yang energy creates movement and action – so, it can speed up what we are seeking to manifest in our lives. and if you’re a destination spot for trick-or-treaters, your house will be the lucky recipient of super duper yang energy. however, if there is clutter in your space, it will absorb that reinvigorated energy that knows how to move you in new directions – opportunities + adventures + LOVE. what to do? give your house a quick clean before the doorbell rings and the good energy bling will be all yours!

finally, this simple shui™ tip has mileage all year long, lovies! after any holiday travel or vacation, you want to yank up (yang up) energy in your house. when we are away, the energy in our space gets quiet, settled, and a little too still because nothing is happening. upon your return, make like a gust of wind and turn the faucets on; open the windows; tune into some music; and stoke the stove or oven to get energy back on her feet and moving on your behalf. a quick on + off is all you need to wake the space up! remember, moving energy equals prosperous energy, so this shui guarantees high fives + smiles 8 days a week!

xo

simple shui | give your place a feng shui makeover

i am a ban.do devotee. i LOVE their agendas – every single one has mapped my forecast, fortressed my dreams, and retired as a snapshot of everything that happened in my life that year. naturally, i turned my lovelies onto them, too. which is why you’ll understand how it felt like kismet when – in our different corners on an ordinary day – we all noticed the last weekly inspo in our 2018 planners:

GIVE YOUR PLACE A FENG SHUI MAKEOVER.

it was a sign sewn with sequins, and i happen to adore both veryvery much!

so, dear ban.do, i am sharing the shui behind 11 of your wildly inspiring and winning 2018 prompts!

adopt a pet. living things are one of the best energy enhancers in the game, so find a “you-complete-me” fur baby, keep her good and healthy, and her good cheer will be a happiness fertilizer!

buy a disco ball. pleasepleaseplease do! but if you can’t, hang a man-made crystal in a window so it can sparkle in the sun, scattering light like a disco ball. light changes energy in an instant, and it feels like a jolt of va-va to the voom!

try a new lipstick color. i am especially fond of bright red lipstick. with a kaleidoscope of options, there is a hue ready to rekindle your spark in a snap. so, strut a new shade of daring pink lippy or find another feverish color to brighten your smile. what i know for sure is once you take the spectrum plunge, your mood will marvel!

donate those clothes you’ll never wear. if the clothes don’t fit or you’re hoping to fit into them again someday, give them away. you deserve to live in the glorious potency of right now.

perfect a family recipe. the kitchen is synonymous with wealth. why? the universe perceives us abundant when we feed and feast with others. and prosperity and luck find that arrangement mighty attractive. i can already hear the wolf whistles. even better? any good-spirited gathering kicks low vibe tail out of your space. bottom line: happy faces equal happy spaces.

add some plants to your décor. plants + flowers do all sorts of fancy talking in a home, improving the quality of our well-being and harnessing ultra-replenishing energy. and when they are well taken care of, plants are the gift that keeps on giving. so, grow a green thumb and go for it!

play the drums. sound shepherds perky energy into our space and keeps it from wandering away. so, whether you put the playlist on repeat; hum while busting through those ordinary chores; or play those bongos – just because you can – good energy will follow the beat in her feet right to you!

make your desk look extra cute. a desk is a representation of how well we support our own success. so, consider it a worthy transaction to find a desk that delights you. and then, my pretties, please remember this: even necessity deserves to feel beautiful. buy the blooms weekly, splurge on the fancy stapler, make that lamp a love light; and above all else, keep it clean.

plan that trip you’ve always wanted to take. once upon a time, travel wasn’t in my forecast. i didn’t have the budget. free time wasn’t sitting around in wads, begging me to use it. and the opportunities weren’t necessarily presenting themselves either. when i look back at pictures of our home now, i see subtle changes in how i anchored the possibility of travel into our environment. i loaded up the belief travel would happen through a careful selection of things — travel books, maps, globes, and canvassed art. eventually, the desire merged into my reality, and i traveled to Paris. Madrid. London. Copenhagen. Prague. Marrakech. and… those metaphors still do the heavy lifting, satisfying my wanderlust every year.

go through some old photos. we like to nurture our nostalgia, clinging to it like it’s the only proof of our experiences. memories are what we carry with us, and it is only the memory that bestows meaning on our things. so, hold onto what you really love. but if the memorabilia is stored in the basement or a shoe box, consider why you’re keeping it. and if that answer doesn’t bring you joy, give yourself permission to make space for new memories.

make a list of what you’re grateful for. we experience the world how we perceive it, so we cannot possibly create more good things in our lives without an awareness of our blessings. gratitude will always be a cornerstone of a prosperous life. and a daily gratitude chat helps sweep away the accumulation of mental clutter that might be blocking you from seeing all the good things right in front of you. make a list of all the people and things in your life that bring you joy. add to this list your talents and strengths. give thanks. every day. revere this list as your real wealth portfolio, and as life brings you more of anything swell, add to it!

xo