Principles of Feng Shui are usually applied to external spaces, but you can use them on internal spaces, too, like clearing mental clutter. What do we know about clutter from Feng Shui? It rushes and depletes energy; it blurs focus; it confuses and obscures. All the things that clutter does to energy in our homes and offices, it does in our brains, too.
If you wonder whether you suffer from mental clutter, ask yourself if this has ever happened to you:
- Thinking about a problem or rehashing a conversation while driving to your destination and arriving only to realize that you don’t remember anything about the drive at all!
- Doing the laundry while cooking dinner only to walk into the kitchen with an armload of folded clothes to find an open refrigerator door and soup boiling over.
- Talking on the phone while driving and missing your turnoff.
Three for three? Read on.
When did multi-tasking become a badge of honor in our culture? Brain scientists tell us that multi-tasking is a misnomer – we are not equipped to do more than one thing at a time and yet we have convinced ourselves that not only CAN we multi-task, but we SHOULD multi-task. In fact, multi-tasking is considered the expressway to high achievement! Alas, a uni-tasker is simply, a slacker.
I beg to differ. I’ve been a self-proclaimed-and-proud-of-it uni-tasker going on six years. I gave up multi-tasking on a memorable birthday much to the chagrin of my family, who were convinced I wouldn’t be able to do it, and then they were upset when I only focused on one person at a time and later banned texting at the table. Here’s the upshot: I get more done in less time and am happier with the results of my efforts than when I was a multi-tasker. Plus, we talk to each at the table.
Feng shui supports this finding. A traditional Feng Shui saying: “Energy goes where the eye goes,” helps everyone understand the energy of a cluttered space. It’s hard to know where to begin to clear a cluttered space because the eye bounces from one pile to another. You must start with one item and decide where to put it. Soon, one item at a time – the space will be clear; the energy will gently flow through again, and you’ll actually feel your nervous system relax. It’s the same with your mental clutter. You must start with one thought or idea and figure out what to do with it. Schedule a time to think about that problem. Rehash a conversation if you’re going to actually speak to the other person – and schedule a time to do that. Drive – and really look at the road, your fellow travelers in other cars and the speed limit. Fold the laundry. Cook dinner. You’ll be amazed how much time you’ll actually save! Put the phone in the back seat while you’re driving. You’ll hear it ring and know to look at your calls when you arrive. Experience the clarity of your present.
Life was not meant to be a balancing act on a high wire; but we can find balance. Use your Feng Shui point-of-view to not only look at the clutter in your home or office, but in your mind as well.