A few years ago I decided to try some feng shui ideas to decorate my home, even though my rational self was skeptical. The results were very pleasant, and I came to see that some principles of feng shui have a sound common sense basis. Here are simple feng shui tips you can use for your home.
What is Feng Shui?
“Feng Shui” literally means wind and water, and is about achieving balance. The principles of fengshui can be applied to not just your home but also your life.
The central concept in feng shui is chi, which means moving air. This chi represents energy, which can be either positive or negative. Almost everything in feng shui is aimed at allowing positive chi to circulate freely, and banishing negative chi.
Science or superstition?
You may be skeptical about feng shui, as I was. Yet I recognised that Traditional Chinese Medicine has been around for thousands of years and is now gaining recognition in western medicine. In the same way, feng shui is slowly gaining mainstream acceptance and the scientists might get to it soon 🙂
My approach was therefore to experiment a little and judge by the results. I invite you to do the same. Here are some practical applications of using the concept of chi to bring positive energy into your home and life.
How to use feng shui in your home
1. Clear away clutter
Clutter traps chi and prevents it from circulating. Trapped energy turns stagnant and becomes sha chi, literally ‘killing energy’. This saps your positive chi and results in feelings of stress, depression and irritability.
What to do with physical clutter:
- Throw away anything you haven’t used in 5 years
- Store things you haven’t used in a year away in a closet
- Gather small items into large boxes
- Put a laundry basket near bathing or changing areas
- Keep your desk free of clutter
2. Create open spaces
Open spaces allow chi to accumulate and gather strength. This space attracts harmony, health, and prosperity into your home and life.
How to create open space:
- Move large furniture to the sides of the room
- Use side tables instead of a large central coffee table
- Choose sleek designs instead of bulky ones
- Leave doors open to allow easy movement between rooms
3. Have essential items only
The easiest way to get rid of clutter and create open spaces is to have essential items only. For me, a writing desk is more essential than a bed, and for years I slept on the floor by choice. A TV is non-essential for me, and my living room has no TV.
4. Avoid long passageways
Long passageways cause chi to rush through too quickly, and this momentum can result in chi leaving altogether. This why a slow, meandering river is more conducive to life than fast-flowing rapids.
- Use plants or screens that subtly re-direct chi around them
- Hang string curtains that slow down chi
5. Avoid over-hanging objects
When I first read this in a feng shui book, I thought “Duh!” Objects hanging overhead may fall and injure us. This was when I realised that much of feng shui was common sense at work.
- Don’t position your bed under a beam or hanging shelf
- Get rid of chandeliers and other ceiling suspension
6. Reduce sharp corners
The corners of a table or shelf produce sha chi (bad energy). Again, common sense supports this advice, since a child or even adult could walk into a sharp corner and get injured.
Reducing sharp corners:
- Choose round tables over rectangular or square ones
- Position corners to point away from doorways or frequently used spaces
- Use special plastic protectors or even plants to soften sharp corners
Feng shui and your home
Even if you are skeptical about feng shui, as I was, you may like the results of decorating your home according to these principles. My home felt much more peaceful after the makeover, which surprised me. Why don’t you try and see for yourself?