Your home should feel like a safe and welcoming place where you have the freedom to live exactly the way that you want. Unfortunately, negative energy left over from past situations and events—such as an argument with a loved one, a stressful period of working a deadline, physical items that have piled up, or the dwelling of previous home owners/tenants—can take their toll on your mental, emotional, and even physical well being.

Ridding a single area of a room or every space in your home of negativity isn’t a complicated process, and there are many simple things you can do to achieve a fresher, cleaner, and more positive energetic vibration. You’ll be surprised to find just how much better you feel once you’ve done it.

1. Remove clutter

Physical clutter should be the first thing to go. You might not realize it, but these are things that hold onto energy and contaminate your space with it, affecting you and your family/housemates. Just knowing that those items are there, taking up space in your home, can be enough to subconsciously throw you out of the loop. Anything that doesn’t serve some sort of intention for the space or that you associate with negativity should be removed or at the very least, stored away completely out of sight.

2. Open the windows

Old, stale air that has no place to go will keep negativity swirling around in your space and perhaps affecting everything you try to do. An easy solution? Crack a window! You can even maximize the clearing of that stale air and bad energy by opening as many windows (and even doors) as you can to create a cross breeze. Do this on a particularly fresh and breezy day in early spring or fall and you’ll be amazed at how much of a difference it’ll make.

3. Decorate your space with crystals

If you made some extra room by decluttering your home or space, you can take advantage of that by placing some healing crystals where those old items used to be. Black tourmaline is well known for repelling negative energy and is ideal for placing anywhere in the home. If you’re looking for more of a transformative crystal, try black onyx, which not only sucks up bad energy but also supports and strengthens good energy from people or things placed nearby it.

4. Burn some incense

The smoke from incense can be a great tool for clearing negative energy and cleansing any space. Make sure that if you’re burning incense for the purpose of cleansing a space that you use purely natural types as opposed to “fake” types that merely produce a scent. Sandalwood, juniper, cedar, rosemary, and resins are just some of the best natural choices for effectively eliminating negative energy. Allow one to burn entirely in a room and repeat this every month or so to help keep the energy clear and cleansed.

5. Try a smudging ritual

Finally, if you’re up for something a little more intricate and powerful for ridding negative energy from your space, you could try performing a smudging ritual. Similar to just simply allowing an incense stick to burn completely in one room, smudging is an ancient ceremony that involves burning sacred plants and allowing the smoke to cleanse and restore balance to a space. A typical smudging ritual would involve taking a smudge stick, lighting it, and gently waving it around a space while saying an optional prayer. Here are the exact steps you can take if you’d like to perform a smudging ritual of your own.