Have you ever walked into a room and everything just felt right? Like you immediately felt at peace with the world because all of your surroundings were balanced and the room had nothing but good vibes? With how hectic modern life is, don’t feel bad if you haven’t. We’re not exactly taught how to be at one with our surroundings.
We can still learn to value and balance our surroundings. The ancient art of Feng Shui can teach us how to arrange our surroundings in ways that promote peace, relaxation and balance. The art can get a bit complex, but there are simple contemporary ways for anyone to get the best of this practice.
Keep out clutter
One of the main components of Feng Shui is getting rid of clutter. Traditionally in Feng Shui, clutter means stuck energy and being tied down into the past. Clutter is thought to prevent new opportunities, since you live with unproductive and outdated reminders of the past junking up your space in the form of old papers and expired food on the counter.
In the modern home, it’s an excellent reason to get your space in order. Mercilessly clear out anything you don’t use or even like. Dump that old box of a new fiber bar brand you barely touched, get rid of those gifts where “it’s the thought that counts,” shred old direct deposit forms and purge anything else that is cluttering your life. With less reminders of the past, you may see new opportunities.
Another huge cornerstone of traditional Feng Shui is the Bagua Map, pictured above. It’s a map you mentally place over your home. The map shows which parts of a home correspond to certain lifestyle attributes.
For instance, the center of the space, as the map shows, is devoted to health. The north part of the house is devoted to career, and all the way around the compass different parts of the home relate to different attributes.
Now unless you are building a brand new home from scratch, you may not be able to align the attributes perfectly with the cardinal directions. To get a mental image of this map over your home, align the bottom of the map with the main entryway you use, so you’re entering through career, helpful people or wisdom. What this does is tell you which parts of your space correlate with different aspects of your life.
For a more simple approach, you can also do the same with a single room, putting the doorway at the bottom of the map. You can even apply it to your desktop, placing the bottom of the map where you sit.
What this means in terms of a modern and practical approach is that you can use those spaces to align your home and psyche with certain goals. For instance, getting the upper righthand corner of your home or room organized and appropriately decorated will remind you to value relationships or leave you more open to them. But what does it mean to get those areas “appropriately decorated”? That’s where Feng Shui colors and décor pieces come into play.
Feng Shui colors
Colors can carry some strong psychological associations, and the ancient art of Feng Shui is no stranger to the notion. Certain colors carry certain attributes for bringing your environment in line with your desires. Below is a basic guide on what colors mean in the framework of Feng Shui:
Green: Development, healing, harmony and vigor.
Turquoise: Achievement and tranquility.
Dark blue/black: Truth, attention and contemplation.
Orange: Happiness, openness and completion.
Red: Motivation, action, accomplishment and passion.
Pink: Love, relationships and emotional fulfillment.
White: Clarity, focus and purposeful activity.
Purple: Thankfulness, plenty and leadership.
Today, that translates into being mindful of what colors you paint your rooms and what colors you bring into the home in terms of fabric and décor. For instance, you may paint your dining room a shade of purple to represent thankfulness. Or your home office may be red to help you get in touch with your motivated, action-oriented side. Your sofa may have a pink throw over it to foster positive relationships. As such, all of these colors help orient your surroundings with the sort of life you’d like to lead.
Colors can also be used in relation to the Bagua Map. Going back to relationships, if you’d like to get that area in your life more aligned, you might paint a room at the upper righthand corner of your home pink or hang a pink painting in the upper righthand corner of a room.
Feng Shui décor pieces
One of the easiest ways to achieve great Feng Shui is to bring items that have what practitioners call good “energy” or “chi” into the home. In a modern sense, that translates into items of great personal value and beauty, like art or houseplants.
There are a lot of complicated and ancient rules about how to arrange a home to attract love and money, balance a home and align a space with certain goals. From a modern, beginner’s standpoint, it’ll help to go off of intuition and personal preference.
In a corresponding Bagua area, place what personally represents the approriate goals you wish to achieve. For instance, in that relationship corner you could have gifts from a significant other or art depicting relationships.
The overall key to Feng Shui is to create a flowing living space that helps you live life to your fullest potential. At the end of the day, you should make your space meaningful for you.