As someone who has moved five times in three years, I have some experience in reclaiming a space from previous tenants. But it's more than bringing in some furniture; clearing your space of negative energy requires a serious level of self-honesty. If you can't pinpoint the source of bad vibes, you'll never fully get rid of them.
A general good practice when it comes to combatting gross feelings is to de-clutter. Like, actually de-clutter. Like, literally go through piece by piece and be honest with yourself about what you love, what you need, what brings positive energy to a space, and what needs to be moved out. This process isn't easy; I've had experiences where even going through old clothes or magazine clippings had thrown me for a serious emotional loop.
In this society in particular, we're conditioned to attach deep emotional meaning to things; there's also a deep-seated fear of forgetting. Why else would we document every minute so fervently? Why else would we cling to store-bought items, if not for at least a little belief that our memories need physical proof?
Trust yourself. And give these ideas a shot.
Cleaning every little corner and windowsill and wall may take some time, but the feeling of accomplishment, the super fresh smell, and the true lack of dust can help you feel safer and more in control of a space. Raleigh Briggs has compiled an incredibly helpful DIY homemaking guide, including how to making your own cleansers that are both cheaper and kinder on the environment (and won't fill your home with that weird fake lemon smell).
Hold A Clothing Swap
Holding onto that pair of jeans from high school that you masochistically try on once a year, or that dress you'll wear once you get that dream job, is not helpful for your mental well-being. Straight-up. Host a clothing swap and donate any unclaimed clothes to a local charity, because winter is coming, and it's a life-threatening time for homeless populations.
Things that make clothing swaps better: Snacks! Booze! A private changing area! Inviting friends with a wide variety of body types!
Prioritize Your Items
Give everything a place. Nothing makes me feel more frantic or anxious or out of control than being unable to find a necessary item, especially when I'm in a hurry and I know it's somewhere. What's the point of having three pairs of headphones if you can't find a single one? If it doesn't have a space, get rid of it.
In Chinese, "feng shui" means "wind and water." It's the practice of arranging your items in harmony with one another and with the natural world. Try reading through the basics of feng shui; maybe you'll find a new balance.
Hang Your Photos
Surround yourself with friends, family, and beautiful images. Investing a li'l time and money in actual frames is ideal (I felt so ~adult~ the first time I hung a framed photo), but if you're living a nail-free spot, then sticky tack and washi tape borders can easily pull together your look. Decorate your space. Claim it.
Not only are plants beautiful, they also literally purify your space. Like they improve the air quality. Some do a better job of it than others, like these plants right here.
Create An Altar
We all worship something, whether it's through religion or music or art or physics. Stamp out negative energy with positive reminders of what you're passionate about.
Throw A Potluck
The best way to fill your space with good vibes? Hosting an event that celebrates good food and good friends, and the support systems that keep us upright. With the farmer's market abundance that is mid-autumn, now is the perfect time
Images: Getty Images (2); Giphy (4)