Springtime is approaching quickly. Where I live, the snow is already melting and the days are getting longer.

With the start of spring, many people like to clean their houses thoroughly. Spring cleaning provides a great opportunity to reorganize and declutter. One process of organization to use to your advantage in this process is feng shui.

The principle of feng shui, which was developed around 6,000 years ago in China, is about trying to get the best possible flow of qi, or energy, in your home or other spaces. Qi is not a physical energy that can be measured, it is just said to be the base of life’s energy.

Feng shui focuses on how we live in harmony with nature and our environment and how to maximize harmony to improve how we interact with the world and vice-versa. While feng shui is a very extensive field of study and people have spent years developing it, here are some general rules that can be followed to practice feng shui in your room or house without needing to make any major changes.

1. Position the furniture in your room in the “commanding position.” This refers to you being able to see the door from where you are, but not being directly in line with it. Being able to see the door can make people feel safer because they can see exactly what is coming through the door.

Another tip is to keep your bed from being center-aligned with the door; the idea here is to protect yourself from the metaphorical bad energy coming through the door.

2. Keep spaces clean. A key way to open the energy flow of a space is to keep the space clean. Clutter can disrupt the flow of qi, and in the case of a bedroom, it can disrupt the feeling of peace and tranquility that should be the prevailing atmosphere. Get rid of clutter to get rid of feelings of unrest.

3. Every room should have a specific purpose. Energy in the house can be better directed and used if it is used for a specific reason. For example, it is not good to do homework in your bedroom, because it can make you feel less peaceful.

4. Go red. Tie a 9-inch red ribbon on your door for luck in finding romance, if that’s something you want in life. Traditionally, red is a lucky color and it can be the color for romance and relationships. Putting the ribbon on your door can encourage good energies to enter into your life, because the door is kind of like the portal into your life.

Also, think about doing or planning things in relation to the number nine, which is said to be a lucky number.

5. Bring a plant into your room. Feng shui literally translates to wind and water, and it has a lot to do with bringing the grounding energy of nature inside. House plants are a good way to do this.

6. If you have a small room, use a mirror to make the space feel bigger. Mirrors are also said to reflect and improve the energy of a room.

7. Wash your windows. Windows represent your perspective to the world. If your perspective is clouded, cleaning windows can help to clarify it. Washing everything — the outside of the window and the screens too, if you have them — can help clear things even more.

This spring, I will definitely keep these feng shui principles in mind while cleaning. If you want to find out more basic information about feng shui, the book “Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui,” by Karen Kingston, is a really good guide and can be found at the library.

Corinna Healey is a sophomore at the DaVinci Academy. Email her at corinnahealey@gmail.com.

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