by Lulu Lee
The Reluctant Feng Shui Practitioner
A new year, new beginning. The last two years of my life have been quite dramatic on all fronts, and as the end of last year approached, my mind became increasingly boggled with deliberations on how to make things “better”. Of course, some mental adjustment and lifestyle shifts were necessary, but I thought I should also dig deeper to see how else to set myself up for a great year ahead.
When I googled “Feng Shui for the New Year”, two interesting concepts caught my eye:
- Reduce clutter
- Prepare your home to receive all good things that you want to attract in the new year.
My mother is a hoarder, the queen of hoarders. And growing up in a hoarder’s wonderland, I grew into the anti-hoarder. As my general rule, anything seemingly unusable in the present moment is strictly culled with such haste that I frequently find myself grudgingly repurchasing items that I have recently thrown away, while muttering profanities at myself at the check-out counter for wasting money.
Nevertheless, I remain a strong advocate of de-cluttering, constantly trying to promote my idealistic dreams of clear walkways and a light fluffy environment to anyone who will listen. Clearing clutter is always so uplifting – not only do you derive an intense sense of achievement, but the atmosphere appears lighter and you feel like a physical weight has been lifted not just off your chest, but your entire being. It also gives you an excuse to buy new and more meaningful things to (sparingly) populate the cleared spaces.
So, for those who loathe to spring clean, here are some tips I came across to clear clutter, interlaced with some of my own (self-professed, mind you) gems of wisdom:
Limit your clearing sessions to a constructive yet realistic duration depending on your attention span or lack thereof, and separate your items into “keep”, “throw” and “KIV” boxes. However, so as not to unnecessarily contribute to retailers by repurchasing items as I do, store the KIV box out of sight – only if you do not need anything from it for six months, do you quickly throw it out without checking the contents. Then, if retail therapy is your thing, reward yourself with some (controlled) purchases to decorate your new clean spaces. Otherwise, just sit back and enjoy the new energy that you will feel from the lack of clutter.
The second concept made me think – getting my home ready to receive all good things that I want to attract. I love to decorate, but perhaps more in a loft-like Urban Outfitters type of way. My looming ID project has been to design a pink neon sign for my living room and I have been grappling with what the sign should say. Unfortunately, the options I am looking at – “it is what it is”, “cocktails & dreams” (with the legendary Cocktail movie logo, of course), or a pink flamingo graphic – seem more middle finger denoting, hedonistic and simply irrelevant respectively, rather than attracting what I need or want from this year. The question is, what do I want from this year? It is clear that more thought is warranted.
So, as the new year sets in, my to-do list looms – to quickly figure out what I want from life, and then to set up an environment in my home that boosts my chances of success. While the former sounds obvious, life sometimes moves so fast that you forget to stop and think, until you realise that a pink neon sign accepting life as it is may not be the most forward-looking mantra to subscribe to.
Whatever it is, this much is clear – much thought is required in the months ahead, but in the meantime, as a placeholder, the word “enjoy” appeals in its simplicity; and this is what I wish everyone reading this – a very happy new year, and may you enjoy everything that the new year brings.