Does the layout or the content of a room really change the way that you feel when you are in it? I have recently become a first-time home owner and have been in the process of making our new house into a place where we really feel at home.
The blank slate is the perfect opportunity to create a space that we love. Not only do I want to create a home that reflects my esthetic tastes, but I also want to discover if the items that I choose to put in my rooms help me to feel more at peace, better rested, or more energized. I felt like this would be the perfect time to research the ins-and-outs of Feng Shui and how I can apply it to my own home.
The #1 rule of Feng Shui is to get rid of any clutter. Clutter does not happen to be an issue that I struggle with (I might be a tiny bit extreme in the opposite direction). For those that do tend to collect items on counters, in corners, closets, or storage areas, I highly encourage you to spend some time going through your things and donate a substantial portion of your unnecessary items. I can bet you that you will not be able to find the things that you are keeping because you ‘might need them later’ if that time ever does come around.
After you get rid of your clutter there are a few amazing things that will happen. The first reason why you should declutter is that you will be able to clean your home more efficiently, effectively, and more often. Secondly, with your home less cluttered and cleaner you will find yourself feeling more at ease there, and you will want to welcome guests over without worrying about the mess. Thirdly, once you have your home organized, you will be less tempted to collect any more unnecessary things so that you can maintain the organization that you have created.
Once your home is free of clutter (or less cluttered) you can begin to add items that will contribute positive energy to your space. Feng Shui incorporates different elements to give you a balanced living space. The five elements, wood, fire, earth, metal, and water each bring their own benefits into your home and will transfer to your mood and to your perspective.
My initial temptation was to incorporate each element into every room of my house. However, once I began to read more about the intention of each of the different elements, I realized that certain rooms should only contain the appropriate elements for that space. The elements themselves can be integrated into a room in a few different ways. Once you know which inspirations you want to bring into each room, you can begin to place items that represent the elements there.
Wood (Renewal) is represented by greenery, so I chose to add some plants to my living room and my bedroom. I am not the best at keeping plants alive, so a few of my plants are fake, but I believe that they still count towards the goal here! The plants (living and non-living) seem to brighten up the room and are a subconscious reminder that we are alive and living and we should be doing that to its fullest.
Fire (Passion & Inspiration) can be included in a room’s design by using triangles, the color red, or bright lighting. I found this to be the most difficult element to tie into my décor but decided on some lamps for my office space. The bright lighting makes it easy to sit and work for significant amounts of time.
Adding the earth (Stabilization) element into each of my rooms has been the easiest task for me. Earth is represented in browns and yellows. I have chosen wooden wall art for almost every room of my house and not only do I love the look of the décor, but it settles our home a bit and makes it feel like we are there to stay.
Metal (Productivity) can be added to a room by using round items and the color white. All of the walls in my home are currently white. I am not sure if it is cheating to count them as my metal element in this exercise, but I am feeling fairly productive in my home, so we will just go ahead and say they count! White walls, however, are my favorite, and I think that is so because it represents the minimalism that I love so much. A life of minimalism has actually been proven to help you get things done and stay motivated.
I am a huge fan of essential oils, so I have brought the element of water (Serenity & Wisdom) into my living space and into my bedroom by using essential oil diffusors. Not only am I filling my home with the benefits of the oils themselves, but the sound of the water is very calming and encourages me to breathe a little deeper and slow my thoughts.
I hope that my brief experiment with Feng Shui has encouraged you to take a look at the space that you are living in and make some changes to achieve a more balanced home. Whether it is the elements themselves, or it is the intentions with which you choose the items for your rooms, purposefully creating a space that welcomes the benefits that you seek can change the way that you live in your home, and enable you to live better outside your home.