Smudging might be a totally new concept to you, but it has been used for centuries to cleanse negative energy and purify living areas. Smudging typically refers to the burning of small parcels of certain herbs in order to cleanse a space of low energies. It is surprisingly easy to practice smudging in your own home – all you need is an open mind (and some herbs!)…

1. It Clears The Air Of Negative Energies

If you have just moved in to a new home and, much as you love it, the energy just feels a little…off. This could be down to a number of reasons, including strange or low energies, but this is not something that you have to live with. Burning ceremonial sage, as directed below, can help to cleanse rooms and spaces of negative energies.

For those of you who thinks that smudging seems a little far out, there is actually some science behind it all! Burning sage actually changes the composition of air, physically altering the way it is made up. This shift can positively affect the quality of the air, as well as erase any bad energy. Burning sage in your new home, workspace or around yourself can get rid of old energies and make room for new experiences.

2. Smudging Will Help You To Sleep

Smudging can really help you to drift off, and improve the quality of sleep that you are getting. Again, this is due to the change in air composition. The increase in negative ions produced by smudging allows your body to relax more, thus encouraging sleep. The aroma, too, can help you drift off more easily, and promotes deep and beneficial sleep. Lavender can also be used for smudging, especially if you are looking for a good night’s sleep.

Part of the reason that smudging helps aid sleep is the routine side of it all. Get yourself into good habits – relax, burn sage and get cosy. Your body will begin to associate smudging with sleeping and you will soon find yourself drifting off without even trying!

3. It’s Transformative

With the change in air comes a change in energy. Whether you believe in the science behind this or just the power of positive thinking, burning sage makes a big difference. Imagine this new air getting rid of all the negative energy and bad vibes that hang in the air.

Smudging is a great way to move on from unwanted or painful experiences. Break-ups, emotional conflicts and illness all tend to get trapped up in the air around us. Part of moving forwards involves letting go of the past and transforming our surroundings. By physically altering the air around you, it’s easier for your mind and heart to move on after trauma.

4. It Enhances Your Spirituality                                              

Smudging enhances your yoga and meditation practice. Part of this benefit admittedly comes down to the ceremony of the whole process, and the spirituality that accompanies it. Again, the clearer the air, the clearer your mind. By imagining a healthy space with room to grow, you will open yourself to a much more beneficial session.

Smudging can really set the tone for your practice, and helps you enter meditation in a focused state of mind. There is something really special about preparing a room for yoga practice, and this scared ritual has so much history behind it. Think of it as an aromatic Feng shui, for both your living space and your mind.

5. It Deep-cleans, Fast!

Burning herbs is an easy way to deep clean the house. Sage alters the ionic composition of the air when it is burnt, by releasing more negative ions into the air. These ions have amazing effects on our minds, but can also make physical changes to our home. The increase in negative ions balances the air out, making it healthier and cleaner for us.

The negative ions, if there are enough of them, can effectively clean your home, too. They work by getting rid of dirt and mould build-up, as well as having an anti-bacterial effect. Essentially, these negative ions cling to the ions involved with nasty aromas and dust, making them heavy enough to fall to the ground. This makes it much easier to clean your home or workspace, leaving you feeling safe and healthy.

6. It Is A Wonderful Mood-booster

Burning sage, and other herbs, is believed to ward off depression and negative thoughts. Serotonin is the chemical that helps us feel good and improves our moods. Smudging can help to normalize Serotonin in the brain, thus stabilizing our moods. This stability in the home is really important to our mental health and, while it may not be a cure, smudging can definitely boosts your mood!

How To Do It At Home:

Smudging is super easy to do, and it doesn’t require any prior experience or knowledge of herbs of Native American traditions. These simple steps will help you reset your home and improve your wellbeing.

This is a lovely ritual that will boost your mood and encourage positive energies in your home. It is something to be enjoyed, and you can perform it as often as you like.

You will need:

  • A smudge stick, which you can buy or make yourself (see below!)
  • A small candle and a lighter/ matches
  • A bowl or container that is fireproof. Add sand to safely extinguish the embers when you are finished

I like setting everything out on a special cloth or table, just to add to the ceremonial feel of it all. Make this your own ritual by dressing in the same clothes, playing a meaningful song or following the same route around your home each time.

Start by lighting your candle. I’d opt for an unscented one, just so you can fully appreciate the smell of the herbs, but this is a personal preference. Hold the smudge stick over this flame until it is lit – it should gently glow with fire.

Carrying your smudge stick over the bowl or container, start making your way around the space you wish to cleanse. This just makes sure that any embers safely fall and are extinguished efficiently.

It is recommended that you walk clockwise around your house, waving the smudge stick to ensure that the herbal smoke reaches all corners of each room. Open cupboards and wardrobes and focus on the corners of each room. Reach into any spaces that may hold stale air or negative energies.

If you want to clear a space of negative energy, picture this energy lifting away as you walk around the room. Healing? Then imagine the smoke cleansing the space of any illness or injury. Whatever it is, envision it floating away on the smoke.

Return to where you began the smudging session, gently pushing the smudge stick into the sand. Blow out the candle, or leave it burning somewhere safe for a while longer. Carefully pack everything away ready for your next ceremony.

Remember, that this is a sacred ritual and respect it appropriately. Take your time, breathe mindfully and move with purpose.

Which herbs should I use?

If you fancy making your own smudge stick, you are in for a treat. This is a really fun thing to do, and definitely adds to the whole experience. Trim a handful of herbs to a similar length, and tie together with string or ribbon. It really is that easy!

Sage is the most common herb used for smudging, as it works efficiently to cleanse the air and recharge the ions around you. This is a lovely choice for any new homes or workspaces that need a spiritual overhaul.

Lavender is the perfect herb to smudge your bedroom with, as it encourages sleep. The scent is quite strong, but it really helps the mind and body to relax.

Juniper can be slightly trickier to find that some of the other herbs, but it is really amazing! It helps recharge your mind and body, especially after illness or fatigue.

Myrrh and Rose are both great options for anyone who regularly practices meditation. They encourage positivity, confidence and feelings of love.

Frankincense has been widely used in relation to illness, and can be burnt in a room to get rid of sickness. It can also help the healing process along, and I would suggest using Juniper alongside it for this purpose.

Myrrh and Frankincense normally come in the form of resins, which cannot be made into smudge sticks. Instead, light a charcoal stick or ‘puck’ and crumble some resin on top of it once there is sufficient smoke coming off it. This will infuse your home with the scent, while cleansing and resetting the space around you.

Make sure that you fully dry your bundle before using. Hanging it upside down for a few days after you have made it can do this.

The wonderful thing about smudging, is that it can be done when ever and as often as you like.

Have you heard of smudging before? Would you like to clear your living space of any bad vibes and negative energy? Who would not want to treat themselves to a instant positive mood boost. Why not treat yourself to a wonderful smudging ritual. You deserve it.

 

Lucy Vinestock

Lucy is a travel and wellness writer currently based in Gili Air, a tiny Indonesian island. After over a year of traveling, she's settled in paradise and spends her days wandering around barefoot, practicing yoga and exploring new ways to work on her wellbeing.