We derive energy from the items around us. Take for instance a desk full of clutter. While some people may be able to function around the clutter, others may have difficulty working in a chaotic environment.

The practice of feng shui has proven that we thrive in uplifting spaces, environments that are free of the things that serve no purpose and have no function. The items we keep in our homes are a reflection of where we are intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually. Every item we keep gives us energy or depletes us of it. We equate our self-worth with what we choose to keep in our lives and how we choose to keep it. Our productivity is a direct reflection of the clutter or lack thereof in our personal spaces.

Clutter can cloud your mind and stifle your productivity.

When surrounded by too many things you never use or can’t remember buying, the job of clearing it up can feel like a painstaking chore. To minimize or eliminate that feeling, you must change your mindset and make it fun. Turn up the music, set up a reward system to incentivize your process, wear comfy clothes, invite a friend over to help you. Simply do whatever you need to do to make the process more joyful. Why not go big and tell yourself that if you complete the whole task in a day, you’ll get to spend the next day at a spa or on the beach, or maybe watch a movie you’ve been waiting to see with a friend?

So, how do you get started? Go through your space with a critical eye and ask yourself these important questions:

– Do I love it?
– Does it reflect who I am today?
– When was the last time I used it?
– Will my life fall apart if I get rid of it?

If any of things cluttering your space aren’t things you love or can’t live without, it’s time to say goodbye to them.
Once you’ve established what must go, you can get to the easy part.

Gather six boxes and label them as follows:

Box One: Throw Away
Box Two: Donate
Box Three: Sell
Box Four: Keep
Box Five: Undecided.

This process can feel overwhelming. Invite a trusted friend to come over and help you decide what to do with the items in question. Not only will you have someone to help you do the physical work, but you’ll also have someone to lean on for support.

The items you’re unsure about should be kept on hold for six months. If you don’t use them in that timeframe, you can decide which of the other categories it can go into and, most important, follow through with that commitment.

And the final box—Box Six—is the transitional box. It’s the landing spot for those items that always end up in the wrong place. That could be misplaced toys, shoes that never make it to your room, a single sock, makeup items, towels. This is the box for lost, abandoned, neglected items. At the end of every day, take five minutes to put them in their place. This practice will save you a lot of time later.

By Inessa Freylekhman

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