IF I CAN'T SEE IT, IT DOESN'T EXIST
In the cult film “Le fabuleux destiun d’Amelie Poulin” ("Amelie" in English) the protagonist, a charming young waitress played by Audrey Tautou, finds herself devastated at the news of the death of Lady Diana and decides to devote her life to bringing joy to people through simple day-to-day gestures.
She helps a blind man "see" by running him around. excitedly providing him vivid descriptions of his surroundings, she helps a mysterious photo booth man find his old albums and plays Cupid to a couple at the cafe.
But her first act of kindness to reunite a small box of childhood memories she had found in between the walls of her home with its long lost owner.
She searched tirelessly as the man had lived there decades ago, but finally accomplished her mission by anonymously tricking him to follow the ring of a public phone booth and find the treasure inside. Amelie stood watching, holding her breath, and as the man opened the box and broke into tears, clearly overwhelmed by the magic of these memories.
When I first started taking up feng shui, one message was very clear: de-cluttering was key.
“Clear it, bin it.. you don't need it” they said.
So I went on a rampage, and I was ruthless.
I looked at everything around me and asked only one question: “have I used it in the last 6 months”. If the answer was no, out it went.
I wasn't completely unethical about it, only throwing things away if they really were of no use to anyone else, and most of the time listing them on a location-based app to sell them to nearby people who might need them.
Looking back on it, I was a bit too harsh and may have gotten rid of things I may still want around. So while I understand that all is in divine order, and they were meant to go, I do feel we need to be conscious, when we take up this kind of work, to strike the right balance between what we keep and what we throw out. While the whole fantasy of detaching from all worldly possessions and living like a buddhist monk sounds quite enlightened, we are, like the man in Amelie, soulful beings, and we need to make space for the items which may not have a specifically functional purpose, but which make our hearts sing.
So where do we keep these things that we don’t use, without causing static chi?
Many people often ask me if a storage room or a garage “counts” in the energetic balance of the home.
Ie if it’s out of sight, out of mind..
The answer is simple, even a storage room which would be detached from your home in a separate location would carry a weight on your energetic field.
Think of it this way: if energetically speaking, your home is a representation of your being, and you decide to put all the things you don’t want to "look at" elsewhere, what are you doing? You are creating dead weight, a shadow body, and attempting to separate yourself from something which is essentially a part of you.
The path of enlightenment is the opposite of this.
All the things you don’t want to look at should be embraced, engaged with and dealt with. Enlightenment can only come when we remove polarity and bring the darkness to the light (or shed light on the darkness).
Yet keeping a spare room in which we throw everything is common practise and understandable considering the busy lives we all lead. If you watched the recording of session two, you may have seen the part where John, one of the programme participants spoke about a box of marketing materials which were lying around the north corner of his flat. We looked into the northern part of his flat because that is the area which represents manifestation and materialisation, and he had mentioned that while there were many financial opportunities “around him” they seemed to be having trouble becoming concrete. Acknowledging this box was causing clutter in this sensitive area, what would happen if he moved this box of marketing materials to the garage? I suggested that, rather than doing so, he should sit and meditate with it and get to the bottom of why these still hadn’t been sent out.
Was it feeling too “sales-ey”? Did he feel it was a waste of time? Was it just not something he enjoyed doing or was there something deeper to look at?
A mentor of mine, a prosperity guru who’s work I highly recommend to anyone interested, recently posted something quite inspiring on facebook. She had remembered her mother had left her a set of historical bibles and was curious if they had any significant value for sale.
But as she fished them out, she realised that the memory and energy of them were priceless and rather than carry on with the sale, she built an altar to them in her home. I love this. As we realise that our homes are the temples of our souls, we need to detach from the idea that it should look like an Elle Décor spread, and start building shrines to the things that mean something to us, rather than tuck them away.
The bottom line is, every item in our home represents represents a facet of our lives and carries an energetic weight on our field . When we store unused items in junkrooms or garages, it often represents an accumulation of unresolved issues we may not be looking at. Shedding light on these is the real key to our growth.
My suggestion is to take everything out of the store room, first reduce it down to what you really need, and then dividing these to be stored in units located across the home. This will allow you to engage with them, connecting to their energy, rather than letting them be forgotten. And if something needs to be resolved, it can then be released.
If you are lucky enough to have a spare room, even if its very small, turn it into a yoga or meditation room. Use your garage to park your car and store only a few things which are relevant (ie garden hose or tool box). And why not use the remaining space as a creative studio and take up a practise of fine art? Or perhaps as a space to play a new music instrument?
If you have a spare junk room (which may or may not go by the fancier name “walk-in closet”) a garage or any other kind of storage room, start by engaging with it. (This also applies to a large cupboard which you know needs to be sorted).
I so often hear people saying “I need to block out a whole rainy day to do this”. Instead, I suggest you put a timer on for 20 minutes, and limit that time spent. You are more likely to have 20 minutes to spare for this than a full day.
Meditate for a couple of minutes, perhaps with a sound instrument or a crystal, and try to clear your head as we will be working with intuition. For those twenty minutes, start having a look around your space.
Intuitively begin to pick things up and put them in piles, either “stay” or “go”. You can close your eyes and connect to the energy of the piece as if it were a crystal. How do you feel? Expanded or contracted? If intuition is not enough for you and your thinking mind begins to come in, ask yourself two questions.
1- have I used this in 6 months?
2- If not, if someone were to return this item to me in 45 years time, would I burst into tears at the sight of it?
If no is the answer to both, it may be time to go.
If it’s a yes, keep it and start to think about which storage unit in which part of your home you will want it to go in.
Along the way, you may also find a few things you may want to build a shrine or an altar to.
By all means do so, and rotate them around to keep the energy alive.
What if you live in one of those buildings which offers you a free storage unit in the garage?
Should you leave it empty? Of course not. But use it mindfully. Keep things there that you know you will use again, bring them up and rotate them with other things in your home, or simply sit and connect with them once in a while. Whatever you do, just don’t let anything lurk in the shadows and become static energy.
Remember this work is about becoming our most expanded self. While spending even 20 minutes engaging with storage may not seem like fun, try to remember the larger objectives, IE: the intention you had set at the beginning of this programme, the things you would like to see change in your life. Let these 20 minutes be a sacrifice towards achieving that goal.
And most of all, (try to) enjoy!