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Posts Tagged Carole Hyder

A Time for Thank You: Appreciating Your Home

Thank You NoteBy Carole Hyder

During this season of giving thanks for the beautiful and abundant life that we have, I remind students, clients, friends, and myself that it’s also the time to give thanks to your home.

If you have no issues with your home and have, in fact, had a nice connection with it, writing a thank-you will solidify this positive relationship.

Writing a thank-you to your home, however, can go a long way in bringing some relief to a troubled and ailing space.  It’s helpful when you’re unhappy with your home for whatever reason.  Rather than looking to move or harboring resentments, a cheaper and easier action to take is to write your home a thank-you note.

Here’s how to write a thank-you to your home:

  1. Use an actual thank-you note or special stationery to write your letter.  Due to the small size of a typical thank-you, you will have to keep your message short and succinct.
  2. Start with “Dear___________.”  If you have a name for your home, you can insert here.  If not “Dear Home” is fine.
  3. List two reasons you are thankful for your home.  Examples:  I want to thank you for making me feel safe.  I appreciate how you keep me warm all winter long.
  4. Outline two actions you will take regarding your home.  Examples:  I promise to get the back door fixed before winter.  I promise to finish painting the bathroom.  I promise to clear out the clutter in the basement.
  5. Sign off with your name.  Love, __________.  All the best, ___________.
  6. Place the thank-you note in a special place in your home—-in your nightstand drawer, under a plant near the front door, under your pillow.

Writing a thank-you does not take the place of cleaning your home or making needed repairs or beautifying it.  But perhaps coming from a grateful heart will make the actions to which you committed more meaningful and healing.

New Beginnings in the Year of the Rooster

By Carole Hyder

Lao Tzu said,

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.”

Year of the Rooster (2)For many of us, the Year of the Monkey can be done already. But rather than shaking off the monkey pranks of this past 12 months, perhaps we could look at how they’re defining the upcoming 12 months.

The Year of the Rooster began February 3rd at 11:49 PM, but its influence was being felt some weeks before that. The Rooster is just plain more predictable. There’s less drama and fewer surprises with the Rooster—for which I think I can safely say we’re all pretty much relieved about that.

The Rooster energy stays close to the ground (although a Rooster has wings it doesn’t really take to the skies), pays attention to details (pecking around for food requires a keen eye), and is image-conscious (no argument that their feathers are quite beautiful).

There aren’t too many people I know who haven’t been stretched this past year—-personally, professionally as well as politically. The monkey-shenanigans have been tiresome, cruel even, but they’ve taught us about being resilient and about being vigilant.

It’s a perfect lead-in to the time of this Rooster—-a fire Rooster. Bringing the Fire element to the Rooster is going to sustain the need for resilience and vigilance but without as much wild drama we’ve just endured. We’re a practiced bunch in how to ride through the tempest so we’ve got this going forward.

We can expect some additional turmoil in 2017 but it’s nothing we can’t handle. The Rooster could bring some opportunities we might not ordinarily embrace and our new-found determination could propel many of us forward.

It’s not the time to hold back just because we came off a challenging year. Rather it’s a time to spread some wings, strut a bit and crow.

Happy Year of the Rooster everyone!

P.S. Want to know some specifics about the Year of the Rooster?

Check out a webinar Lisa Janusz and I did about this very topic.

How Feng Shui May Help You Sell Your Home

By Carole Hyder

home exteriorRealtors often use the term “curb appeal” when getting a home ready to sell. It means that the home should look attractive from the minute someone gets out of their car. The reason is that a good first impression can positively impact the rest of their experience with the home.

Yet from a Feng Shui standpoint, we want a home to have curb appeal all the time. It shouldn’t just be cleaned up for a quick sale but should have the following aspects in place at all times:

  1. The front door is visibly obvious. If a potential buyer (or visitor) has to assume where the door is located because they can’t actually see it, there is a potential for confusion that permeates throughout the rest of the property. If the door is tucked behind a garage or in an out-of-sight corner, place “signposts” that guide the visitor—-flowers, a bench, or windchime.
  2. The front door should stand out from the rest of the space. This isn’t just about being visible, but about being outstandingly so. A colored door, a wreath, or a flag are a few ways to make the front door the central focus.
  3. The walkway to front the door is inviting. The path to the door should be enticing and an experience all by itself—-no cracked pavement or pieces of sidewalk that could trip someone up. But an enjoyable jaunt leading to the entrance.
  4. All plants and flowers are thriving, especially those that are around the front door and the path leading to the door. If they’re not thriving, remove them.
  5. For those who ARE selling their home, place the “For Sale” sign in the Helpful People area of the lot (front right corner as you face the home). This area can elevate the possibilities of a helpful person coming along to buy the home. Put the sign here only if it makes sense and is visible from the street.

Obviously curb appeal is just the beginning of the sale. The same amount of care and consideration should occur once the potential buyer (or visitor) gets inside. Otherwise, the message is an inconsistent one which will leave the guest wondering why something doesn’t feel quite right.

How Does Your Garden Grow? Elements of a Feng Shui Garden

FS Garden 2 By Carole Hyder

Whether gardening in a large space or a small patio, there are some elements to consider if you want to be able to call it a Feng Shui garden. Size does not matter, but intention and layout does.

Before starting, it is important you determine the overall intention or theme you want to express.

FS Garden 5

  • Do you want to use the garden for quiet-time?
  • Do you want to amble through your flowers to get inspired?
  • Is it your intention to create a space where friends and family can gather?
  • Do you want the area to be kid-friendly?

FS Garden 3

Even if your gardening efforts are confined to a very small spot on the deck, think about what you want to create. Fairy gardens are intended to be small but that doesn’t make them less engaging.







Here are some additional elements to consider when you’re designing your garden—-large or small:

FS Garden 61) Water. In line with the concept of wind and water, having water in a garden is a natural. If a pond doesn’t seem like the right fit or feels like it would be too much work, a fountain could be integrated into your garden. A bird-bath is also an option. Japanese gardens use rocks to give the illusion of water.

2) Place to sit. This doesn’t have to be complicated—-a rock or tree stump, a bench or hammock would work. You want a place from which you can absorb the energy of the garden.

FS Garden 13) Curvy Path. Your Feng Shui garden should provide an effortless direction of where to go—–a path of flagstones, chips, or round pavers or a foot-worn path where others have walked before. Making it curvy implies a slower pace where ambling and lingering are appropriate. If you garden is small, create a path that the eye will follow.






FS Garden 44) Ornamentals. The way to personalize and create a unique garden is with your ornamentals. Although this can easily move into the arena of clutter, a few carefully positioned objects around the garden will offer variety and interest.

These photos are all from our garden. Its exquisite beauty and strength come solely from the labor of my master gardener husband. It goes without saying that sitting in this garden has provided us hours of enjoyment and healing, which were the original intentions with which he guided this project.

Feng Shui state of mind

Staying mindful can be hard if you’re prone to depression. Many of us experience more depression as the days shorten as well. Here is an excerpt from an article Carole wrote for Essential Wellness a while back. 

DEPRESSION ISN’T THE typical reason people want a Feng Shui appointment, but it can be a factor in the big picture. An appointment may be made for another more obvious reason only to discover that depression is playing a part. That said, sometimes depression is the only reason someone would inquire about the impact of Feng Shui. When I anticipate an appointment with someone who is depressed, whether clinically diagnosed or not, I can predict that one of the issues I’ll find in their space is clutter. Sometimes the clutter has occurred because their depression has caused them to be dysfunctional; however, I usually discover that the clutter was there pre-depression and has now exacerbated a tough situation.

Anybody will experience frustration, anxiety, and overwhelm from the amount of personal possessions that they have accumulated. These personal possessions can take the form of trinkets, photographs, books, newspapers, piles of mail, clothes, and remnants of projects yet to be completed. Nevertheless, every little memento, every photograph, every knick-knack requires energy. One by one, it’s an insignificant drain, but cumulatively, this drain becomes considerable and, if someone is susceptible to depression, it can fast forward them into a downward spiral.

Taking the first step toward de-cluttering is the hardest, especially if someone is already suffering from depression. However, knowing that the client can experience some relief once they get going, I encourage them to give it a try by helping them break it down into small segments. Since the number “9″ (or its increment) is considered lucky in Feng Shui, I suggest spending nine minutes a day de-cluttering. The cumulative effect of taking these small steps can add up after two weeks, three weeks, or a month. If the task appears overwhelming, the de-cluttering will never happen. Thinking about cleaning out the basement may seem overwhelming, but thinking about cleaning a shelf under the steps isn’t so bad. The next day another shelf, and the next day another one, etc. Start small.

Suggestions to address de-cluttering

  • Make sure there’s appropriate and adequate storage for the items that need to be kept—like holiday decorations, out of season clothes, etc.
  • Any “just in case” items take up precious space and zap energy
  • Remove everything from the front and sides of the refrigerator to calm down the kitchen.
  • Take nine items of clothing out of the closet that are no longer being worn to make room for new possibilities.
  • Remove the clutter from under the bed so dreams can be clear and focused.
  • Eliminate clutter near the front door to invite in more opportunities.
  • Remove everything from the top of the dresser to give your vision a broader scope.
  • Thank the items before you release them.
  • Did I mention to start small?

Although clutter is a big issue for someone who is depressed, there are other Feng Shui actions a person can take to lift these feelings. The bedroom is a critical room for those who are experiencing depression. The location of the bedroom is important as it should not be in the basement or over a garage. If at all possible, move to another bedroom, even if temporarily. Having a bedroom in the basement by its very nature brings about feelings of oppression and heaviness, while being over a garage leaves a person feeling unsupported and alone.

A headboard on the bed is crucial in order to signify support at a time when a person may be feeling like they have none. The head board should be solid, sturdy, and reliable in order to resonate those same principles back to the person who sleeps in the bed. Hanging inspirational, creative, and soothing artwork in the bedroom will give a sense of purpose during dream-time and upon awakening each morning.

Finally, Read more

Water in the Feng Shui Garden

One of the features that is almost a requirement in a Feng Shui garden is the element of water. “Shui” means water, after all, so it is appropriate to incorporate this element in some way. Water symbolizes flow and movement. It is the place from which all life arises and the place to which it returns. It symbolizes eternity since its flow is perpetual and eternal. Water represents renewal and is used in many ceremonies for that reason.

Carole’s garden was part of the Masters Gardeners tour in Hennepin County, Minnesota. It was unique because it is a Feng Shui garden. True to form, there are several expressions of water in her outdoor space.

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Elements to consider for a Feng Shui garden

By Carole Hyder – Whether gardening in a large space or a small patio, there are some elements to consider if you want to be able to call it a Feng Shui garden. Size does not matter, but intention and layout do.

flower1Before starting, it is important you determine the overall feeling or theme you want to express. Do you want to use the garden for quiet time? Do you want to amble through your flowers to get inspired? Is it your intention to create an outdoor space where friends and family can gather? Do you want the area to be kid-friendly?

Even if your gardening efforts are confined to a very small spot on the deck, think about what you want to create. Fairy gardens are intended to be small but that doesn’t make them less engaging.

Here are some additional elements to consider whether you’re designing a large backyard or a small pot:  Read more


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