Archives for September 2009

The Very Basics of Feng Shui

So, you've been hearing about Feng Shui and you are curious, but whenever you go to the bookstore to check books about it you stop on the third page because it all seems so complicated. But you have that nagging doubt that if you try it maybe something will change. I have many friends that think like that. They open the books, take a look at the compass, the Ba Gua map, North, South, all the elements…. mind boggling. Well, it's really not, but if you at least want to get your feet wet, let me give you some easy to follow guidelines that will get you started, then, if you feel a positive change, you might dare to really follow the philosophy and start living your Life With Feng Shui.

I'm not saying that Feng Shui is so easy anybody can do it, it has a certain level of complexity, but it's not unattainable. However, what I'm going to give you here is the very basics, the least you can do to start off feng shuing your life.

Clean out your clutter

This is unavoidable. And you have probably being avoiding it for weeks, months, years, but if you don't get to it, the energy in your life will really keep suffering. I cannot tell you how much your life will improve with just this little change! I'm not going to get into what areas of your house you need to clear of clutter, because the number one rule of Feng Shui is that clutter should not exist anywhere in your environment. No, not even if it's locked away in the attic or the garage.

If you get curious and decide to check out the Ba Gua map and see what area of your life that attic or garage affects, you might be surprised. One example is a friend of mine who had never done Feng Shui in her life, but one day I was talking to her about it and she had mentioned she had been trying to get pregnant for years. So I asked her to draw me a blueprint of her house and as it turned out, her garage, otherwise known as the "space to keep everything we are not using in no particular order", was smack in the middle of her Family Area. After many fights with her husband who was not in the mood to clear the garage, they finally did it… and her son is now 3 years old.

Your Plumbing

Think of water as money. Water is directly related to wealth in Feng Shui. When you say your money is going "down the drain", you might be saying an enormous truth. Every drain in your house is a possible way for you money to escape. If any of your faucets or showers have a leak, that's money going down the drain. Your plumbing is the conduit of wealth in your home. With every leak, you are losing money.
You can keep your shower drains covered when you are not using them, and pull up the drain stopper in your bathroom faucets as much as you can, but, the largest drain of energy in your home is… the toilet.  Men, you might think that this is a woman's invention to get you to keep the lid down, but the truth is that in Feng Shui, one of the most important things you can do is to keep the lid down in every toilet in your house, ALWAYS! Again, if you get curious and check the Bagua map, you might even find that your bathroom is in the Wealth Area, but an open toilet in any area, will drain the energy that corresponds to that area.

Your Bedroom

Mirrored Wardrobes-Bad Feng ShuiMake sure your bed does not face the door directly. You have to be able to see the door when you are in bed, but not straight ahead of you. Also try to have a headboard for support, especially if the only way to place your bed is under a window. In this case, a big headboard is advisable. You can make one with a piece of wood, some fabric and a stapler or get a cheap one at a garage sale or  a second hand store.

Mirrors

I never understood what the big deal is when you go to buy or rent a place and they tell you it has mirrored wardrobes in the bedroom! It's the worst Feng Shui! Mirrors are used to enhance energy, so if you have these huge mirrors in your bedroom at night, you will not rest. Do an experiment and for a night, cover your mirrors with a sheet or a blanket. See how you sleep that night. It's alright to have them during the day, but at night, you can install a rod so you can draw curtains and cover the closet's doors.

Broken Stuff

Anything that is not working as it should is bad Feng Shui. Your energy will always be adversely affected whenever you have something in your house that doesn't work. It can be a light bulb in the basement… change it. All those watches that are kept in a drawer and that you've been meaning to buy batteries for… the worse! That old refrigerator that's sitting in the garage… get rid of it. The broken printer that's been sitting in your home office for weeks… fix it or give it away.  This is something you can feel. Whenever you walk past something that "you've been meaning to fix", you heart skips a beat. You spend even a tenth of a second feeling the bad energy that brings to you.  So if for nothing else, fix or get rid of all the broken stuff in your home in the name of Feng Shui.

Things you Hate

This is the perfect excuse you were looking for to get rid of that awful picture your mother in law gave you last year. You have to love everything you see in your home! Everything that you posses has to bring a warm feeling to your life, or it shouldn't be there at all. If you don't love it, get rid of it. This is the best way to get rid of clutter. If you have to keep the picture because your mother in law will have a fit if she doesn't see it… well, keep it neatly in the garage or the attic and bring it out when she visits.

Cacti

Feng Shui Front DoorAnother friend of mine was a total skeptic. I saw him unloading a huge cactus from his truck and asked him what happened. He said he was bringing stuff from his office because a friend at work stabbed him in the back and he lost his job. I asked him where that cactus was placed in his office, he said, "Right behind me". Are you getting the picture? Sharp needles… stabbed in the back… He started to get intrigued by this philosophy, so, I decided to give him a few Feng Shui pointers. I explained to him how having cacti inside the home or office is really bad Feng Shui. These should go outside, by the windows or doors, they are great protection, but never inside.


Your Home Office

This same friend was now going to need a home office to start looking for a new job, so I made sure I explained to him how his back should never be towards the door. He had to make sure he could see the door from where he was sitting. If he couldn't he should place a mirror in front of him so he could see the door in the reflection. He called a few days later to tell me how impressed he was because after doing everything I told him, he started getting phone calls for jobs and he is now a very successful freelancer.

Your Front Door

Take a look at your front door from outside. Does it look inviting? Is it covered with clutter? Is it dark? Positive energy will look at your door in the same way, and if it doesn't look inviting, it won't come in. Clear your entrance of any clutter, if it's dark, add a light. Use a wind chime to create a relaxing sound and call in the good energy. A nice plant. If you can, paint your front door red!

Now take a look at the front door from inside. Does the door open freely? Is it cluttered? I think by now you are getting the idea. See? No compass, no elements, no difficult stuff. Just the basics.

So, if you are not going to do anything else, at least keep these few things in mind. You will notice slight changes in your life that will make you want more, and believe me, this will be just the beginning.