Smudging: How to Cleanse and Clear Your Space

smudging, intuition, psychic development, lessons in joyful living, kimberly rinaldi

Smudging 101


Smudging is an ancient cleansing ritual used by Native American and shamanic cultures to remove negative energy from a space. It’s great to clear space when you have stagnant energy, especially if you notice negativity in it, or even if you just want to lighten up the atmosphere. And depending on what you use, it can smell nice too.


I often do smudging after major changes have taken place in a space or when occupying a new space.


The steps to smudging


  • Buy a smudge kit (affiliate link) or smudge stick and find a bowl to hold it over (traditionally, abalone shell is used). Also, set up a cup of water to extinguish it after the ritual (remember, safety first)
  • Open every door and window in your house, and turn on fans if you have them. This gives the negative energy a place to exist from and limits the lingering smoke smell (if you’re sensitive).  I also open all cabinets, closets, drawers and cubbies to make sure the smoke moves into all of the closed up spaces.
  • Light the stick, and when it catches fire, blow it out and allow the embers to start to smoke. Like you would light incense.
  • Set your intention for each room. Put on some uplifting music and say a prayer of cleansing, such as “I cleanse this room of any impurities, negativity, or anything that does not suit or support the people that live here.” One of my favorites is to simply walk around repeating, “Clean and clear, blessed and protected.” You’ll find what works for you.
  • Walk around the room waving the sage stick so its smoke drifts into corners, under furniture, into closets/drawers/cabinets, along walls, around windows, and along ceiling lines. As you do, imagine the smoke absorbing negativity, problems from those who were in the space before you, toxicity, stagnant energy and anything else you want to go away. See the smoke dissipating and floating out the windows, and imagine that bad energy flowing out of your space, making room for positive, healing, fresh energy.
  •  After you’ve blessed every room, give yourself and anyone else who participated with you a sage shower. Cup your hands over the smoke and “wash” your face with it. Then wave it all over your body as you would in a water shower. Visualize any residual negativity sailing out of your body, out of your home, and into nothingness.
  • Extinguish the stick in the cup of water. Or bury it in your backyard. Just be sure the smolder is out.



The options

Smoke isn’t the only method for clearing space. You can use light, fresh air, music, chanting, movement (dancing is a fabulous tool), tuning forks, crystals and crystal grids, or meditation. Your options are only limited by your imagination. Think about it this way, the best way for changing up energy is to – change up the energy.


Enjoy your new, clean energy and space.


Tell me about you… What do you use to change up the energy in your spaces? And what do you feel works best? What are some of your favorite combinations?



  1. Cheryl Ann Rooney on June 26, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    I do this first with sage, then cedar then sweet grass! Being native american, this is a part of my life!

    • KRinaldi on June 26, 2013 at 5:55 pm

      Each brings a different purpose and energy to the space. My favorite is the sweet grass.

  2. Julie Possehl on July 11, 2013 at 9:32 am

    Very nicely explained, and simplified.
    I love using sweet white sage .
    Shifts of energy happen always .. Some are welcome some need to be moved because they no longer are positive.

    • KRinaldi on July 11, 2013 at 10:15 am

      I love that you get it. I try to explain that even “good energy” can reach a point where it no longer serves and becomes a detractor to your energy. All energy is is a constant state of change. Such is the way of the Universe. Blessings!

  3. The Ghost Remover on August 11, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    Nice article , one of the biggest misconseptions regarding smudging is that it will remove a spirit or spirits. , this is not the case , smudging removes the residue energy but not the source.
    I always smudge after removing the entities or spirits as it physically brightens the house/building
    I smudge with fresh eucalyptus leaves
    Stay safe

    • KRinaldi on September 26, 2013 at 10:23 am

      Thank You! Good reminder. I’m going to try the fresh eucalyptus next time too.

  4. jo on January 29, 2014 at 11:29 pm

    Hi Kimberly! Just discovered your blog. I’m wondering if fresh dried sage is supposed to smell like marijuana or something close to it. I ordered it via an Amazon vendor. When it arrived, the package was already torn open. I complained to the vendor, and the vendor said that the police or post office regularly tears open those packages because they smell so much like marijuana. Is that true? I’ve never smelled fresh dried marijuana, so I don’t know. I DO KNOW for sure, though, that the sage that was mailed to me smelled really different from what I used to buy at the store. Thanks in advance if you can reply!