If you’re looking for a new way to arrange your home, the solution may lie in an ancient Chinese system called feng shui. Let’s learn the basics along with some easy tips for implementation in your home.
Feng shui philosophy. Feng shui, which translates to “wind and water,” is a method designed to achieve harmony between your home’s energy and yourself. The goal of feng shui is to keep balanced, positive energy flowing throughout your home. To do this, you need to understand the power principles of feng shui — chi, the five elements, bagua, and yin and yang — and how to use them to optimize your space.
Chi. All objects and living things have chi, or energy. A space or an object can have positive or negative chi. Negative chi can have a detrimental impact on your space and the different parts of your life. The goal is to have positive, flowing chi in your home. This can bring luck, wealth, and opportunity into your house and life.
Five elements. The five elements are water, wood, metal, fire, and earth. Items are associated with an element based on their material, color, shape or texture. For example, something blue might be considered a water element. These elements should be balanced inside your home.
Bagua. Translated from Chinese, bagua means eight areas. It is a map of your space and the corresponding areas of your life. As a tool, bagua can be used to place objects and items from the five elements to support and harmonize different life areas.
- Love and marriage
- Children and creativity
- Helpful People and travel
- Knowledge and spiritual growth
- Health and well-being
Yin and Yang. The yin and yang symbol represents two opposite forces—the dark (yin) and the bright (yang). Yin qualities tend to have a feminine aspect such as softness or caring. Yang qualities are masculine, hard, and more aggressive. To employ this power principle, you want to achieve balance of both forces. For example, you may want to have soft fabrics or pillows paired with a hard, angular sofa.
Feng shui at home. To use feng shui to arrange and harmonize the space in your home, employ these tips:
- Start at the entryway. Energy flows in through the front door, so you should create an inviting space. This is a good place for a fountain.
Eliminate clutter and broken items. These items contain negative and stuck chi and can lead to problems.
- Create balance in every room by making sure that each space has an item representing each of the five elements. Bring plants, nature, and water features into your home.
- Create a comfortable and restful bedroom, with soft fabrics. Place your bed so that it faces the door, but isn’t directly opposite it. This is called the “commanding position.”
- Arrange furniture so that you can move around it easily and don’t walk into anything when moving around your house.
- Close bathroom doors.
- Use mirrors to reflect energy when you can’t fix a space.
The beauty of feng shui is that by arranging what you already have with intention, eliminating unnecessary items, and employing natural elements, you can improve not just the look of your home, but the life you live in it.