You eat the right foods. You try to hang out with positive people. You meditate, and spend time in nature, but shouldn’t you give the space in your home just as much loving attention so that it can truly be your temple when you return every day? The ancient practice of Feng Shui offers some practical ways to make your home more energetically appealing and a respite from the crazy world out there.
Depending on who you talk to, you’ll find varied advice about how to apply Feng Shui in your own home or workspace. Consulting different experts can be time consuming, though – but fear not my world-wearied home seekers. We’ve compiled some of the best nuggets from professionals the world over right here so you can get busy putting them into practice right away.
Smudge Antiques with Sage
Antiques are awesome if they express your personal style, but be sure to smudge them with sage to clear their energy before putting them in your home. If older furniture is already in your home, you can still give it a good once-over by conducting a sage ceremony to make sure only the best energy is in your home.
Use Lots of Living Things
Add live plants, not fake ones, and try to concentrate them in rooms where you spend the most time. They will not only transform the energy of the space, but they can clean the air, and invite prosperity, or mental clarity. As described in the Journal of Environmental Psychology, the mere presence of plants boosts a person’s ability to maintain attention and concentration.
Fake plants are “dead” and do not support a high level of energy in your home. They also collect dust easily and can contribute to allergies and upper respiratory problems. Moreover, many of them are made from toxic plastics that also contribute to poor air quality.
Reduce Clutter with the Right Furniture
Whether in your home or office, clutter can make going home feel like another job, rather than a place to relax and recuperate. Instead of having lots of furniture without any real purpose, choose a few great pieces that are highly functional.
The best furniture is often multi-purpose. Does your sofa or favorite chair have a hide-away ottoman where you can stuff your favorite pair of slippers and extra blankets?
That bedside table might be très chic, but can it hold all your night-time reading, a laptop, some candles when the lights go out, and a journal to write down your dreams when you wake up? Hiding all the utilitarian tools that you need to make your daily living more comfortable?
The same thing applies in a work space. If you have old metal shelving, or desks which are sitting unused, move them out, and create a comfortable, organized space where people’s minds can create and focus, rather than be distracted by a lack of inspiration.
Splurge on Flowers/Plants
There is scientific evidence that flowers contain a specific frequency which raises our own energetic field. Research conducted at Rutgers also shows that flowers have an immediate impact on happiness.
In order to fill out an arrangement without breaking the bank, you can get a few large, showy blooms, and then use cuttings and branches from around your yard or in the nearby outdoors.
Provide More Soft Surfaces than Hard Ones
For every angular piece of furniture or art in your home, make sure to balance the energy with soft places to land. This can be cushions, chairs, sofas, rugs, ottomans, blankets, soft slippers to sink your feet into, and more.
Too many angles can make energy get disjointed and cause distraction. Conversely, having soft pillows, and comfy cushions encourages a restful environment and a restful state of mind. This one change says, “Sit down and stay awhile!”
Hang One Big Mirror, Not Many Small Ones
One big mirror can make your space feel larger, while also expanding your personal energy. Hanging too many small mirrors is thought to cut the energy into small bits. No good. Also, don’t use “parts” or “fragments” of a mirror. This can make your feel incomplete or disjointed.
The very best use of a mirror is to double the impact of a natural setting – can you hang a mirror so that it reflects a massive tree outside, the ocean, or a beautiful garden? You’ll get the most energetic bang for your buck by doing so.
Best feng shui areas to have a mirror are:
Feng shui areas to avoid placing a big mirror are:
Also, hanging a mirror near your entryway serves two purposes. You can get a quick look of yourself before you head out for the day, and also activate the water element which encourages the flow of prosperity into your life.
You can also use a special Bagua mirror (Feng Shui mirror, also called a pa kuala) . It is a round mirror surrounded by an octagonal wooden frame with the feng shui bagua design in either red, green and yellow/gold colors or yellow, black and red colors.
Books, Books, and More Books
The digital age doesn’t provide for mindful entertainment and mind-expanding Feng Shui in your home as much as some good old-fashioned books.
Reading a book also involves different neural pathways than reading something on a computer screen, and can encourage you and those who visit your home to slow down and enjoy a good read.
Different Feng Shui experts have different opinions about where to store books in your home, but the consensus is that an office or library, along with the living room can store the bulk of your books, with the most ideal location being in the Northeast corner.
Your bedroom should have just a few so that they don’t over-stimulate your mind when you are trying to rest. (As in, “I keep meaning to read that 1,000-page novel but I never have time – how about I start right now?” when its already 11PM and you have to get up in six hours.)
Let in as Much Natural Light as Possible
While there are great alternatives to natural sunshine in the form of LED and solar-powered lights for the nighttime, nothing can compare with natural sunlight for keeping the energy of your home high, and your health boosted.
Just sitting near a sunlit window with a good book, disconnected from your cell phone or computer for an hour can restore you in ways you wouldn’t imagine.
Be Very Picky About the Art You Display
Though Picasso’s Guernica is arguably an amazing piece of art work, it isn’t really the best piece to hang in your home according to Feng Shui principles. Experts suggest that you only hang artwork which will inspire you toward your own life’s goals. The images you surround yourself with have a way of working themselves into your subconscious. So be mindful of what images you are exposing yourself to. Is a trip to Ireland or Peru on your bucket list? Hang some art that inspires you to get there.
Don’t Neglect Your Entryway
Most of us think of making our bedrooms, kitchens, living rooms and even bathrooms more beautiful and relaxing, but the entryway is one of the most important “areas” in Feng Shui, but also often the most overlooked. If you want to attract good Qi, or energy to your front door, you have to invite it in. Get rid of clutter, use live plants, use a big mirror to reflect the outside – in, and place a few objects that make you smile the minute you walk in your door.
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