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Posts Tagged Chi

Living Room Feng Shui – Bring New Life to Your Living Room

Living RoomBy Jessica Hoelzel

What room in our homes do we not “live in”? All rooms are for living, right?

Ironically, living rooms can be one of the rooms with the least life. The living room, and formal living rooms in particular, have gone out of favor. With an inclination for casual lifestyle and entertainment, families have gravitated towards family rooms and rec rooms – places to watch TV, movies, or play games.

Living rooms have come to feel “stuffy” and go unused. With more space of high value to homeowners, leaving an entire room neglected does not seem wise. From a feng shui perspective, having a room in your home with no life is not wise either. Depending on where that room falls in your home’s bagua, the lack of life (or chi) could be having adverse effects on your life. And especially if it’s the first thing seen upon walking in the door.

If you’re not using your living room, the question is, why? Could it be a place you’d enjoy spending time in? If so, it’s well worth the effort to make it a place that calls you in.

Here are some ways to make the living room more inviting and functional:

  • Create a good flow. Place a table behind the sofa if it backs up to the entrance.
  • Make it homey. Add softness with rugs, throws blankets and pillows.
  • Add some personality. Display artwork and things with special meaning.
  • Bring life to it. Have plants, and décor with lively patterns for visual interest.
  • Create a reason to go in. Lay out magazines or stacks of interesting books; add music.
  • Make it suitable for entertaining. Add a coffee table with a purposeful tray, or a handy bar cart.
  • Set the stage for conversation. Group furniture at 90 degree angles, or around the fireplace.

If, after careful consideration, you’ve determined that a living room is just not a space that makes sense for your family’s lifestyle, is there something else you’re in dire need of? Maybe it would make sense to transform it into something new. With intention, it could go from unused (dead) space to a place of energy and life. Maybe a home office, playroom, music room, or library? You decide.

Feng Shui is for the Dogs…and Cats and Other Animals!

Ella -Then

Then

Ella

and Now

By Lisa Janusz

It surprised me to realize just recently that my little princess is turning 10 next month! I am so grateful for all that she has brought into my life. Of course I feel that she is quite a special dog.
(FYI – Carole agrees!)

All animals are very good Feng Shui (you knew that was where this was going, didn’t you?). Anything from the smallest fish to the biggest horse can help activate energy. They represent the Fire Element by bringing a life force to your space. This activity can really support a house, in addition to the people living there.

framed postcardI know for me Feng Shui had a huge impact on Ella’s arrival. I had placed an oversize postcard in my Children & Creativity area shortly after I purchased my home (based on the bagua – the middle right of your space). I hadn’t thought much about it at the time…

Through unusual circumstances, I ended up adopting a puppy from another state (that essentially someone else had picked out for me). Later one of my friends would ask me if it was Ella in the picture – and that’s when the dots connected.

postcard dogAlthough not exact, I could definitely see a resemblance.

Seems my intention of getting a dog after moving into the house gathered some momentum early on.

So this month, instead of several Feng Shui “tips” for you, I have just one: remember that the smallest (and inexpensive) change in your space can support an underlying intention.

Ella 2If you have something you are hoping for – really take a look at your space. If you know the bagua, pay attention to the area that it represents. Then think about how you might add something – like a photo or an object – to help you represent that dream. This goes for houses and offices.

Then be open to what arrives. In my case, a postcard purchased in Europe years prior ended up bringing me a spark of furry love that I’ve enjoyed for almost a decade.

5 Elements for Weddings

Weddings 3“Wedding season” is quickly approaching. There is something about the summer that makes it a prime time for saying vows. It could be that travel plans are more flexible with kids out of school. Or that the warmer weather is a nice background for strapless dresses and beautiful flowers. Whatever it is that brings that energy, it totally encapsulates us for months at a time.

With all the razzle-dazzle, it can necessitate a yearning for balance. In Feng Shui, one of the ways we try to capture that feeling is through the Chinese five elements – water, wood, fire, earth and metal. Look outside and you will see how one element does not exist without the others. This is why people feel so peaceful in a natural setting.

Whether you are planning on getting married or attending a wedding, you can use the five elements to keep your personal chi (energy) or the event chi balanced.

3 Ways to Incorporate the 5 Elements

  1. Color: black for water, green for wood, red for fire, brown for earth and silver or gold for metal.
  2. Shape: wavy for water, columnar for wood, triangular for fire, square for earth and circular for metal.
  3. Themselves: water, wood (trees, plants, flowers), fire (fireplace, candle, heat lamp), earth (soil, ceramic vases or pots) and metal (jewelry, vases).

Weddings 2For my own wedding several years ago, the five elements were subtly – yet significantly – present. There were a few of us who knew, but for most people they were just added details. I wore all 5 elements that day – from the wave of my hair, to the metal of jewelry and the structure of my dress. Each bouquet and boutonniere included all five elements through flower colors and added ribbons.

Even the centerpieces comprised all five elements with their nourishing water, wood plants, bird cutouts (animals are traditionally “fire” energy), earthy soil and metal ribbon.

Weddings 1You can use them as a mix – a black ribbon here (color representing water), a candle there (fire itself)…whatever works for you! Use as much or as little as you like. I used them quite a bit – incorporating in several details for the day. But you could also just concentrate on a presence – like your flowers. Or if you are a guest – colors in your outfit. Even carrying a purse with colored ribbons tucked inside will do.

No matter how you decide to surround yourself with the 5 elements, you will experience their harmonious and comforting balance.

lisamccueBy Lisa Janusz

Wind & Water School of Feng Shui Registrar and Faculty

The Season of Goodwill

Christmas Lights Decorating Columns in Front of HouseHolidays could be a study in contradictions. They bring a rush of emotions that can be both positive and challenging. This roller-coaster can cause chaos to your personal – as well as your home – chi.

Chi is energy, the life force, within and outside of us. Personal chi is related to how you feel. Home chi is related to how your home feels.

Your personal chi can be affected by the hustle and bustle of the season. It can seem as if there are so many to-do’s and so little time. It can become both a month of rushing, stressing and feeling overwhelmed. And it can also be a time of joy, excitement and thanksgiving. Add in the other dynamics – like personal relationships and getting together for the holidays – and your personal chi can skyrocket in several directions – at once!

Then you’ve got your home chi. For many of us, even if you have a fairly “quiet” space, it is suddenly and dramatically awakened. Lights, other decorations and activities are added. When you look around you are surrounded by more stuff. It can become another example of contrast; reminding you of the magic of the season and increasing the energy (clutter?) around you leading to a sense of overwhelm.

It is important to take note of how you feel during the season. And then work on both your personal chi and home chi to bring balance.

Here are three reminders to keep your chi in check:

  1. Downsize. Release any items that don’t “fit” anymore. If you don’t love it and aren’t going to use it in your holiday décor, give it to charity. You give those items new life when you let them go and give someone else the opportunity to be excited about them.
  2. Visualize. If you are going into a situation that might be challenging (like a family get together), visualize the outcome you want. Whether it’s because of a personal relationship or exhaustion from the social interactions, first build up your chi so that you enter the situation with strength.
  3. Prioritize. Figure out the top 3-5 things that are most important and concentrate on those. Then give yourself permission to let the others go. Be confident in knowing that you can do it all, but this year choose not to.

Make maintaining your personal and home chi your number one priority this year. Create a holiday season that – while it still may hold some contradictions – is more about balance and joy. Because after all, a big part of the season of goodwill is you.

Happy Holidays from all of us at the Wind & Water School!

lisamccueBy Lisa Janusz

Wind & Water School of Feng Shui Registrar and Faculty

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