This morning I worked with a new client in her home. She gave me a tour of her living space. We came upon an alcove in her dining room. It was filled with stuff. This is often the case. People will have a particular space that seems to attract lots of things.
I started asking about the things in this space. A lot of them turned out to be things that no one in the family was using. It had become a black hole where things went that were no longer useful. These areas often go unnoticed because they are clutter. They no longer are important to the people so their attention doesn't go to them or the space they have taken over. They may not be noticed, but they do have an adverse affect on the people living there. The presence of clutter creates discord. I told her this and she became interested in taking care of the stuff. Most of it went into a pile of stuff to be donated.
The alcove was actually an open space between her dinning room and kitchen. It felt nice to have this space be open. The sunlight streamed from the dinning room windows through the alcove's hole and into the kitchen. The kitchen became much brighter. She noticed this and it made her happy. She stood by that space and said she could feel the flow. It made her feel energized.
I asked her to tell her family how much she likes having the new space and to ask them to notice it too. Also, to ask her family to help her maintain the new space. It's a better approach than asking them to not put things there anymore. People like to feel like they are contributing, not that they are a source of a problem. It helps them be on your side. Plus they get the benefits.