I’m into learning about healthy living in every capacity — body, mind, and spirit. We place a lot of emphasis on taking care of our physical body through diet and exercise. Sometimes we remember to take care of our mind — most often through mediation. But most of us probably neglect caring for our energetic body — our spiritual energy. Everything is composed of energy — from our bodies to the spaces where we live. Learning how to shift energy can help attract positivity and abundance in our lives. One way to shift energy that is growing in popularity: smudging sage in the places where we live and work.

Lets start with a few basic principals: Everything has energy. Energy cannot be created or destroyed. It can only be transformed. Negative energy has a tendency to collect — in our body, in our minds, even in the rooms we live in. Highly sensitive people can sometimes even sense it. Have you ever walked into a room and immediately sensed a heavy feeling in the air that you can’t quite put your finger on? That heaviness is the energy in the room. The sensation is based on a feeling and the intuition inside of us. There’s obviously no proof of it’s existence but if you’ve ever felt it you know what it is.

“Negative people deplete your energy. Surround yourself with love and nourishment and do not allow the creation of negativity in your environment.”

-Deepak Chopra

Humans leave traces of their energy everywhere. When negative energy collects it become stagnant. Often it collects in areas of our homes or offices that are highly trafficked. This is where people’s energy is gathering, so you want to diffuse negative energy collecting in the space.

We have the power to shift energy by raising the energetic vibration in our spaces to attract positivity and abundance to our life. Practitioners of alternative medicine believe that burning sage can help release negative energy. The practice is known as smudging. Sage was used in ancient Egyptian, Roman, and Greek medicines for its natural healing properties. Whether or not you believe that energy can be cleared by smudging, the scent alone can have a grounding effect. This allows you to think more clearly, reduces anxiety, and creates a sense of calm in your day-to-day life.

As a beginner learning to smudge, your best bet is to purchase a pre-wrapped bundle or stick of white sage. The type of sage you want to buy is called “California White Sage” or “White Sage Smudge Stick” — not the sage in your spice rack. The quality of the source is important so this is not a time to jump on amazon to order. Look for it in high end shops or retailers that specialize in spiritual goods.

Once you’ve procured your sage you want to place it in a vessel to burn it. Be safe and keep some water on hand. Open a window or door before you start burning the sage. This allows the smoke to exit your house. Light your sage for several seconds and then blow it out so that it keeps smoking. If it stops emitting smoke, try lighting it again. Now is the time to set an intention to bring positivity to your space. Walk to each room you wish to purify and let the smoke enter it. Do not allow any space to fill with too much smoke. I kind of replicate what they do in church with incense and holy water. Just a little, not too much and walk around the rooms to let the smoke enter but you don’t want to inundate your space. This is a spiritual process so enter into it with that frame of mind.