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Feng Shui for Anxiety

anxietyBy Sharon Witt

We all have our moments of anxiety —- a looming deadline, public speaking, or walking down a dark, unfamiliar street. These are all normal reactions to potentially risky situations.

As a Feng Shui Consultant having worked in community mental health for many years, I am especially interested in how Feng Shui can help people with the most common of all mental health issues: a prolonged sense of anxiety.

The faster everyone’s lives run, the less directly they communicate, the more technology they use, the more their nervous systems go into overdrive. Serious anxiety disorders are the number one diagnosed mental health condition in America.

Anxiety and its accompanying physical and emotional symptoms comes from an imbalance of water and fire. A person with a deficiency in fire will tend to feel heart palpitations, cold hands/feet, insomnia, disturbed sleep, nervousness, circular thoughts, and/or lack of joy in life. A person with excess in water will feel extreme fear, feel like they are stuck or frozen, and will be isolated from people and activities they enjoy.

From a Feng Shui perspective, here is what I’d suggest:

1) Add fire in its most gentle form for warmth, and 2) relax fear due to too much water. Start by focusing on two areas of the home – the Health (or center) area and their Bedroom. When giving options for adjustments, keep them to a minimum (2 for each area). Any more will only add to their anxiety.

Bring Warmth to the Health Area

  • A yellow candle, red object, or red flowers to stimulate the heart, which is ruled by fire.
  • A crystal in the center to balance the energy of the home and client.
  • Light, especially a torchiere lamp, if the area is dimly lit.
  • Art or a picture that depicts a warm, sunny place.

Create a Calm, Peaceful Bedroom

  • A sturdy headboard for support.
  • Limit electronics: TVs, cell phones, and computers are stimulating and heighten anxiety. If TV is a must, cover with fabric before sleep.
  • Remove or cover mirrors for a more restful sleep. Mirrors can contribute to an excess of water.

Working with someone over time, I’d take a layered approach, adding one or two adjustments at a time.

Prolonged and serious anxiety is challenging, yet the impact of introducing Feng Shui principles can be profound for those clients willing to take a step or two toward a more satisfying life.

Sharon WittSharon Witt is a Wind & Water School Certified Graduate and the owner of Sharon Witt Feng Shui.

Contact Sharon

Back to School Feng Shui Style

Back to School

By Lisa Janusz

It’s that time of the year: back to school! This is a time for families to transition from the ease of summer to the more structured time of the school year.

From a Feng Shui perspective, you can help your kids create a supportive environment at home to help them ease back into school and set them up for success.

  1. Clear the clutter. Look at every item in their room (toys, furniture, clothes). Reduce the “noise” by clearing out clothes that no longer fit, toys that are no longer relevant and furniture that is no longer needed.
  2. Look at decor. Is it age appropriate? Does it meet their needs? (For example, adding a desk for an older child.) Whatever changes do occur, be sure that they have significant input. It’s their room after all.
  3. Set up a system. Mornings can be hectic and can set the day off with challenging energy. Create places for things to go: a bin for papers (homework, permission slips), a hook for coats and backpacks, baskets for shoes, a place for sports equipment. Don’t get caught up in what others are doing – design one that works for your family. This will enable you all to start the day with a more relaxed, focused energy.
  4. A place for homework. Have a proper place for school work. If it’s in their room, try to set it up so they can see the door. If elsewhere, make it a place that promotes studying (large enough for books and papers). Designate a space that is quiet and has enough room to spread out while they are working. Also make it a daily habit to clear off that space to enhance their ability to have clear vision in the morning and each night as they sit down to work.

There is usually so much enthusiasm at the beginning of the school year that this is a perfect time to create a space that supports their endeavors and is open for growth and possibilities.

Ready, Set, GOAL! Feng Shui for Your New Year’s Goals

Happy New Year 2016

By Lisa Janusz

As we embark upon the start of 2016, many of us are in forward-looking state of mind. This is the time to set goals for the year ahead – and I encourage you to do so.

 

 

As you set your 2016 goals:

  • Make them SMART – Specific (and simple), Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-limited.
    Write them down or share them with someone.
  • Watch self-talk: “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” –Henry Ford
  • Remember that there isn’t “failure” – just more information. “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” –Thomas Edison
  • Push yourself. “If you hit the target every time, the target is too near or too big.” –Tom Hirshfield

Be open to adjusting your goals as the year goes on. It’s not to let yourself “off the hook,” but rather allow yourself to change course when it’s appropriate.

From a Feng Shui perspective you can support those goals by paying attention and seeing what’s happening in these areas:

  • The related area of the bagua (if you know it). For example the career area of your home if you are looking for a new opportunity.
  • The room or place that “holds” the energy around your goal. For example, the front door (where opportunities knock) for a new job or the kitchen for health.
  • Your bedroom since this is place to focus on rest and rejuvenation to keep your chi up.
  • Your sacred space. This could be a meditation area, your favorite place to sit or even a vision board (any size – even an index card!).

All of these will help you support your journey for the next year.

Not sure ”goals” is the right focus this year? Maybe a different type of thinking will resonate more with you. See our past blog posts about being resolute and setting an intention for the year.

Whatever you decide to do: know that we are a community that supports you. As we all keep growing and moving forward, we bring out the best in ourselves, and that of others.

Best Moving-In Practices: Feng Shui Tips for Your New Home

family in yardBy Carole Hyder

Most people would agree that moving is chaotic. No matter how organized or how long the move has been planned, there typically comes a time when frenzy and confusion rule the day. This is not how you want to introduce yourself to your new place. Feng Shui can help make your move more meaningful.

Before leaving your old residence, make sure you did some kind of closure. In other words, say “good-bye.” Whether you liked the old place or not, it deserves a farewell whatever form that might take. I’ve assisted some people who loved their home, providing a beautiful closing ceremony the morning they were leaving. I also know some who couldn’t stand their space and choked out a “thanks” while closing the door. It’s important to close one door before opening another—–in this case that would be a literal action.

Once at the new place, here are some specific things to do the first day you’re there, and other actions that are more long-lasting…

  1. Get your personal bedrooms set up first. Since the bedrooms provide you a safe place to sleep and rejuvenate, they need to be your first and foremost focus. If you’re planning to repaint the walls, re-carpet or remodel in anyway, try to get this done before you actually move in.
  2. Eat in your home the first night. Bringing in food is just fine, since cooking would probably be difficult. But it’s important that you make this commitment to the space by having a meal there. Granted, you may be eating on the floor or sitting on boxes, but that’s no problem—-the house is grateful for your inclusive gesture.
  3. Ring the doorbell for the first few days, every time you walk into your new home. It establishes your presence and your ownership. Since the doorbell is typically by the front door, you’ll be activating that important entry on a regular basis. Plus, you’ll soon learn whether the doorbell works or not.

Making your move intentional and meaningful using a Feng Shui approach will establish a strong relationship with your new home—whether it’s a house, an apartment, a condo or a single room. Then, this new home can help you come home to yourself.

What’s on YOUR Walls? The Art of Feng Shui

Frames of rooster placed above the fireplaceBy Carole Hyder

Everything in your environment—-home or office—-can have an impact on your outlook whether you may be conscious of its effect or not. It goes without saying that the artwork you hang on your walls is not exempt from providing this same influence.

There are some definite Feng Shui guidelines when placing artwork in your space that can empower both you and your art. It’s obvious you should love the artwork you display and you should continue to be inspired by its presence. If not, remove it, sell it or give it away. If you and your partner/spouse cannot agree on a piece of art that is jointly owned (one loves it; the other does not), take steps to place the artwork where the one who loves it can truly enjoy its message and the other doesn’t have to see it on a regular basis.

Here are some other Feng Shui “rules” for assessing your artwork:

  1. Have restful art in the bedroom (florals, pastoral landscapes, calming colors);
  2. Have food-related or farm-related art in the kitchen and eating areas (fruit, farming scenes, agricultural themes). Images or colors that support health are appropriate here.
  3. Your daring, innovative and controversial art is nicely positioned in public spaces such as the living room or family room.
  4. Scenes that depict warring factions, such as those depicted in mythology, must be carefully positioned so their conflict doesn’t play out in some way in your life.

Whatever artwork you may have on your walls, make sure it still inspires you and speaks to who you are. More importantly, make sure it reflects where you are heading; otherwise, it’s holding you back. If you’ve had the same artwork on your walls for many years, ask yourself if you still love it and if it still fits with your goals. Or perhaps it’s time for a new vision. Let your space help you move forward in perceptive, subtle and artful ways.

Top 6 Feng Shui Tips for Home Decor

By Lisa Janusz

Feng Shui Tips ArticleFeng Shui, the ancient art of placement for balance and harmony, is considered both an art and a science. Not only does FengShui help with creating beautiful design and flow in spaces, but also people often see major life shifts through its practice!

Even though it’s an ancient Chinese practice, Feng Shui is still relevant today. In fact, many of its basic tenets can and should be applied to our modern living spaces. For example, many professional Feng Shui consultants have backgrounds in interior design because the two align so beautifully. Whether you are your own decorator or use a professional, Feng Shui can help guide you toward beautiful and impactful choices.

As featured on Om Times, here are 6 ways to incorporate Feng Shui into your home décor

Booked on Feng Shui: Your Books Speak Volumes

Ying Yang bookshelf

By Carole Hyder

Most people own books of some sort—-textbooks, novels, self-help, biographies. Some people have skads of books—-so many, in fact, that they’re stored in boxes in the basement because there are not enough bookshelves to hold them all. There are some people who can’t let go of their college textbooks from 30 to 40 years ago. Others love their books so much they wouldn’t think of keeping them in boxes—-so they’re stacked in various corners waiting for the right place to call home.

Setting up a library or a library area is always a good plan for someone who owns a lot of books. The extra bedroom could become a quiet reading spot where shelving would make the books accessible. An unused formal dining room may convert beautifully to a formal library, complete with floor-to-ceiling shelves and a rolling ladder to access the most remote volume. Sometimes a purging is required to get the books to fit appropriately into a space.

Because books represent the opinions and stories of others, they do need Feng Shui consideration for proper integration. Here are a few ideas of where and how books are appropriately, or inappropriately placed:

  1. Books should be maintained in an upright or horizontal position. Since books (due to their different size and color) easily turn into a haphazard assortment, keeping them neatly in place will help. I’ve taken to storing the books I have in my office according to color—-it works for me!
  2. Never store books in your bedroom.  Books represent the voice/opinion of the author and therefore bring with them a lot of  vibration and “noise.” Other than the book or two you may be reading at night, store the rest of them elsewhere.
  3. Having books near the front door sends a positive message to those who visit that you are studious, well-read and appreciate intellectual pursuits.

Books are our friends. Treat them respectfully and with care. If they’re taped up in boxes in your basement, it may be time to let them out. Libraries are always looking for used books, so are used book stores. If it’s no longer being read or appreciated, it is time to turn the page on your books and bring them to a happy ending.

 

The Black Hole: How to Have Good TV Feng Shui

By Lisa Janusz

TVAccording to Nielsen, more than 54% of households have 3 or more televisions. Does that surprise you? It did me.

Recently Dr. Andrew Weil (an integrative medicine expert) was asked about having a television in a child’s bedroom. He recommended against it and cited some research about how a TV in a bedroom correlated with unhealthy children. From a Feng Shui perspective, we couldn’t agree more! And not just for kids’ rooms – for any bedroom.

Bedrooms should be a sanctuary; a place of rest and rejuvenation. Televisions are big black holes (think of the comparison when they are off). They suck energy. That’s why you don’t want one where you are sleeping. I know, I know – some people say they need them to fall asleep. Often though, those same proponents tell me their sleep isn’t that “restful”.

Try to break the habit if you can. TVs are not conducive to peaceful sleep or dreams. By their nature, TVs are meant to be stimulating and engaging. That is why they are best suited for an “active” room, like a family room.

Follow these other tips to have #goodtvfengshui:

  • Do not keep a television in a bedroom (or kitchen or bathroom for that matter). Think of the function of the room.
  • If you can’t break the habit just yet of a TV in a bedroom…at least put it behind closed doors (like an armoire) or drape it with fabric to minimize its impact.
  • Scale the television to the room. Don’t let it “own” the room.
  • Put it behind closed doors (or drape it) if it’s in a room that does “double-duty”. Do not give your TV prominence in a room that is also used for family gatherings and entertaining.

Think of the message you are sending with your TV. Do you really need that distraction in every room? At least prioritize where you sleep.

Trust me, I get it. Admittedly, I couldn’t live without a TV either. But in our family we do limit the where and when. How about you? Have you had to break the habit? Tell us your success stories!

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