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Clear the Clutter and Enhance Your Chi

Updated on September 1, 2011
The Yin and Yang symbol with white representing Yang and black representing Yin. Strive to keep the two in balance in your life.
The Yin and Yang symbol with white representing Yang and black representing Yin. Strive to keep the two in balance in your life.

The balance of yin and yang

Feng shui is the ancient Chinese art of placing objects to maintain the balance between the yin and the yang. To the Chinese, all things in the universe are either the female yin or the male yang.

The black side of the symbol represents yin – female, dark, cold, introvert, passive. The white side, the yang, is male, light, warm, extrovert, active. Rather than being in conflict, the two are complementary. The yin cannot exist without the yang and vice versa. Therefore a seed of each is present within the other.

Maintaining balance through chi

A fundamental principle of feng shui is that of chi. Chi is the life force that is within every living thing and inanimate object. Chi can be positive, negative or harmful. It is the practice of feng shui that attracts positive chi to us or redirects the negative chi away from us.

Positive chi keeps our lives in balance and brings us pleasure. When this positive chi is flowing freely in our environment it can improve our lives, including our wealth, health and relationships. We’re happy, life is going our way and opportunities present themselves.

But block that chi and we start to experience complications. Problems arise and conflicts develop. We begin to feel stuck in some areas. Worse is the harmful chi called “poison arrows” that come from sharp protruding corners and straight lines. For example, furniture with sharp edges such as bookcases and roads leading directly to your front door are poison arrows.

Lucky Chinese coin used in the art of feng shui to attract wealth.
Lucky Chinese coin used in the art of feng shui to attract wealth. | Source

Enhancing positive chi

When life gets out of balance, feng shui practitioners place objects to enhance the positive chi and deflect the negative. For instance, to improve chi associated with wealth and prosperity, you might use three Chinese coins that have a square hole in the center. Tie them together with red thread and hang them in the southeast corner of your home.

One of the easiest ways to keep positive chi flowing and maintain balance in your home is to rid it of clutter. Cluttered rooms block chi, leaving energy stagnant and stale. Take a look at your life. Are your relationships with loved ones harmonious? Is your career on track? Have you been sick a lot?

If you didn’t get the promotion or raise you were hoping for, then take a look at the Wealth and Prosperity (southeast) corner of your home. Are there stacks of old newspapers and magazines? Dirty clothes in a pile on the floor? Clean it all out and you will begin to notice a change.

Clutter blocks the flow of positive chi in our lives.
Clutter blocks the flow of positive chi in our lives. | Source

Here are some tips for decluttering your home and freeing your chi:

  • Take one room at a time. Once you make up your mind to get rid of your junk, it’s tempting to start a whirlwind of activity but if you don’t pace yourself, you are likely to eventually lose steam and give up.
  • Spend 15 minutes each day in your chosen room. Pick a corner, drawer or shelf in your chosen room and start there.
  • Use boxes. One box will be marked “trash,” another will be “give away.” A third will be "keep." Make your decisions quickly. The longer you hesitate and hold something in your hand, the more likely you are to keep it even when you don't need it.
  • Sort your mail standing up near the recycle bin. Make an immediate decision on each piece. If it’s a bill, it goes in your “to pay” pile. If it’s junk, it goes immediately into the recycle bin. If you must hold mail so you can follow up or make a decision on something, then set a time each week to take action on it.
  • If you have children, it’s tempting to keep every drawing and graded paper. Don't. Get a box for each child. Save papers in the beginning and ending of each school year so you have a record of their progress. Save truly important papers such as report cards and major school reports. Take photos of exhibits and art projects rather than the objects themselves.
  • One in – one out. Each time you bring home a new piece of clothing, pan, toy, etc., get rid of a corresponding item.


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    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 5 years ago from Illinois

      That's a very good point, DearBandit, that if you don't know what's in your room you have too much stuff. Thanks for the vote up!

    • DearBandit profile image

      DearBandit 5 years ago

      This is a great hub. I think that it is very important to keep clutter at bay.

      I like the “bring something new in, and get rid of something else”

      I once heard that it is good to know what you have in every room of you house or apartment. If you do not know, then you have too much stuff.

      Voted up!

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 6 years ago from Illinois

      Hi Debbie, thanks for reading and commenting. That book sounds interesting, I"ll have to try to find it. I just started doing some running the past few months and I must say it isn't my favorite activity. I'm hoping I get to a point where I actually look forward to running, much like I look forward to my workouts.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Interesting hub. Whilst I don't know much about feng-shui, I do believe in balance in our lives and positive energies. When I started running I read an excellent book called chi running and still refer to it now when I feel unfocused.

    • BkCreative profile image

      BkCreative 7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Yes, indeed! So glad to meet another interested in the benefits of feng-shui. I do tend to wind up with a clutter issue and it just slows me down.

      That 15 minutes in a room suggestion makes sense. It is so much easier to keep up this way - rather than saying I'll put aside a day to...who has a day to put aside. So it doesn't get done.

      So tomorrow - just 15 minutes.

      Rated up! Yay!

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 7 years ago from Illinois

      Thanks for your comment and rating, toknowinfo. I believe some people are just better at managing clutter than others. It takes being organized and I can tell you that my older son and I are more organized people "naturally" than my husband and younger son.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 7 years ago

      Great hub! I believe there really is something to Feng Shui. Certainly managing clutter is an important skill. Thanks for sharing and putting together such a well written article. Gotta go as the clutter accumulates even as I type, but I will take a moment longer to rate your hub up and useful.

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 7 years ago from Illinois

      Thanks Lene. Glad you liked the hub. It's amazing what we hang on to.

    • Lene Lynn profile image

      Lene' Lynn St. John 7 years ago from Glendale, AZ

      Excellent article! If I could just get my extremely scientific, very cluttery boyfriend to start believing, it would be soooo much better! He never throws anything away, well, at least not before I met him! He is still a clutterbug and it's not fun for me! And I totally agree with Denise about the black and white. You have a new follower, by the way!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 7 years ago from North Carolina

      I just re read this hub and have to comment about the explanation of the yin-yang. While it was great info, and I feel necessary for people who have always wondered about the symbolism, I think the person who devised this had it reversed. The FEMALE energy should be light and warm and the MALE energy cold, passive and unresponsive! Just my experience...oops, I mean opinion, LOL

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 7 years ago from North Carolina

      Excellent, excellent hub. Wow! I'm bookmarking it and sending it off to my facebook. Hey, how did you manage to sneak into my study and take that picture ! LOL Great hub.