feng shui guide
House & Décor

The Complete Guide to Understanding Feng Shui

Are you intrigued?

Every time someone mentions “Feng Shui”, do you wonder if you are missing something.

I can imagine you don’t like being kept in the dark… especially, when people talk about getting the luck, relationships, dream business or happiness they have dreamt of through following Feng Shui principles.

If “something” existed which could potentially help you achieve whatever you want to achieve… If this “something” could be accessible, open and interesting…

You would totally give it a try! Am I right?

This Complete Guide to Understanding Feng Shui might be the missing piece you were waiting for. It starts from the very beginning, aiming to equip you with a healthy balance of Feng Shui fundamentals and tips.
 

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WHY I WROTE THIS GUIDE:

I get a lot of questions from different people about Feng Shui and how I organise my space around the house. I used to refer all interested parties to Google (so nice of me!) but recently decided to put together a Feng Shui guide to explain the history, background and outline some of the basic Feng Shui rules.

I am not a Feng Shui expert or guru by any means. In fact, I resisted Feng Shui practice for a very long time, thinking that any new knowledge or advice that didn’t align with my current home plan might have upset me, or made me feel frustrated. It took me a while to realise, that Feng Shui is about creating harmony, rather than only defining room locations, layouts and strict rules.

I hope, my Feng Shui guide will inspire and empower you to create well-deserved harmony around you, be it in your home or your office environment.
 

THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDING FENG SHUI

 

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WHAT IS FENG SHUI?

Feng shui was developed by Chinese philosophers more than 4,500 years ago, with the purpose of achieving the optimum in wealth, family and work. Feng Shui represents the art of placement, built on the observation of relationships between environment and human life.

Feng Shui is composed of two words which mean wind (feng) and water (shui). These two elements play a central part in the Chinese theory of “Five Elements” which explains everything that happens inside us (such as emotions) and around us (surroundings).

Both wind, seen as air, and water are essential to life. Flowing and circulating around us, they create climate, which is vital to our life and impacts our food, biorhythm and health. That’s why Feng Shui is seen as the art of harmonising people and places.

Feng Shui stipulates that all elements in the Universe are alive due to an energy that flows through them and that they have a well defined role in the chain of life. The same energy is found in humans and it’s what makes each individual unique.

Interestingly, Feng Shui almost didn’t make it to our time as a concept. During the Chinese Cultural Revolution, many ancient beliefs were suppressed. Fortunately, many of the fugitives from China in that period managed to pass on their knowledge, so that today we can enjoy the benefits of this life improving concept.

FENG SHUI BAGUA:

bagua-map-feng-shui-guide

Feng Shui bagua, also called Pakua or Ba-Gua, is the energy map of a space, which assigns special meanings to different locations/rooms based on the ancient knowledge of the energy flow.

In practice, the energy map is placed over the plan of the space (one room or the whole house/apartment) and reveals the location of each of the nine energy areas in that space as being: family, travel, wealth, self development, creativity, helpful people, children, romance, fame.

Feng Shui bagua can be used also as a guide for choosing a colour for each room, for deciding what picture goes where or how to place the furniture in order to get a high energy vibe.

FENG SHUI THEORY OF 5 ELEMENTS AND COLOURS:

According to Feng Shui principles, colours are live elements.

Feng Shui Bagua, as mentioned above, helps to balance colours to achieve a harmonious assembly within the space. It is important to study these colour meanings before re-painting and decorating your home.

Best practice is when your choice of colours is aligned with Feng Shui theory of 5 elements: Water, Wood, Fire, Earth and Metal.

Each of these elements rules over a specific area of your home, according to Bagua:

  • Water represents freshness, wealth, abundance.
  • Wood is all about vitality, health and growth.
  • Fire colours bring energy for your career and will smooth your path towards recognition.
  • Earth colours represent stability, protection for your relationships and nourishment.
  • Metal elements bring balance to your home or business space, giving you clarity and focus, helping you to avoid all distractions.
According to Feng Shui principles, colours are live elements. Click To Tweet

ENERGY IN THE HOUSE ACCORDING TO FENG SHUI:

In Feng Shui, energy plays the most important role as it impacts not just the space, but also our close environment and our own personality. This energy, called Chi, flows in all beings and spaces and must be correctly directed, in order to reveal its optimum benefits.

The flow of the energy should be smooth, like a river that starts at one point and finishes at another.

Clutter brings bad Chi and is represented by lots of different things, from overfilled closets to dark hallways. Clean spaces combined with positive decorative objects, can improve the chances of attracting health, wealth and long-lasting relationships.

Another famous Chinese theory which contributes to understanding energy flow is focused on two main forces: the Yin (feminine) and the Yang (masculine). Yin is soft, relaxed, passive, silent and symbolised by the Moon, while Yang is the energy of the Sun, direct, focused and bright.

Both energies need to be balanced within your home.

feng-shui-guide4

 

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FENG SHUI NUMBERS:

According to Feng Shui, numbers have special meanings in the life of each individual.

Feng Shui’s roots are deeply related to numerology and in Chinese culture (or Cantonese, to be more precise), the numbers are considered to be lucky or unlucky based on how they are pronounced.

For example, eight is a lucky number because it sounds like the word “prosperous” in Cantonese, whilst number 4 is considered to bring bad luck due to similarity to the word “death”, in the same Cantonese language.

In brief, the energy significance of numbers is as follows:
0 – void, nothingness, potential
1 – unobstructed flow of energy, independence, new beginnings, unity
2 – balance, relationships, choice, easy, cooperation
3 – creativity, family, self-expression, liveliness
4 – stability, grounding, security, death
5 – change, resourcefulness, adventure
6 – calm, profitability, patience, aesthetics, beauty
7 – contemplation, self-evaluation, solitude
8 – infinity, abundance, wealth, success in business, prosperity
9 – highest number, manifestation, accomplishment, longevity, attainment

PRACTICAL APPLICATION

FENG SHUI PLANTS:

feng-shui-plants

To bring more good Chi to your space, use indoor plants to decorate your home. When choosing your plants, pick those that are beautiful and vibrant. Avoid plants with sharp leaves.

The most common Feng Shui money plants are Crassula Ovata and the PaChira Aquatica and when placed alongside images of forests or meadows, they can also bring abundance into your space.

DECORATING WITH FENG SHUI:

When decorating with Feng Shui, it’s better to concentrate on the wider picture (your space as a whole), zooming in on each area to obtain an overall synergy of energies. The main characteristic of a space decorated using Feng Shui, is harmony!

Feng Shui decorating means creating an environment suitable for its purpose and activities.

Prior to decoration you must make sure you do the following:

  • Clear the clutter! Clear all old energies in your space.
  • Ensure that there is quality air and light for that space.
  • Define the bagua or energy map.
  • Understand the colours necessary for good Feng Shui.
The main characteristic of a space decorated using Feng Shui, is harmony! Click To Tweet

FENG SHUI FOR BEDROOMS:

One of the most important rooms in your home, the bedroom, is also a key element on the Feng Shui map. A bedroom is a space intended for rest, relaxation, intimacy and recovery. Therefore, your bedroom should be transformed into a space that invites you to calm your thoughts and find inner piece.

No matter if you need your bedroom for a sleepless night of passionate love making, an afternoon nap or a night of calm sleep, here are some simple Feng Shui tips for your bedroom:

  • Maintain a flow of fresh, clean air inside.
  • Only use healing essential oils.
  • Leave enough space to access your bed from both ends.
  • Don’t place the bed right in front of the door.
  • Have night tables on each side of the bed.
  • Do not keep plants in your bedroom, unless the room is very large.
  • Create a bedroom environment without a TV, computer or exercise equipment.
  • Use “skin colours” for decoration, ranging from white to brown.
  • Equip your bed with a quality mattress, natural fibers sheets and healthy head position pillows.
  • Place positive canvases on the walls: happy moments, positive quotes, inspiring pictures.
  • Maintain order and cleanliness in your bedroom, including your closet and window areas.
  • Use toxin free candles.
  • Keep all the doors in your bedroom closed.

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FENG SHUI FOR KITCHENS:

In Chinese culture, food means wealth. For the rest of the world, the kitchen is usually a central place for spending time with family and friends (especially during celebrations such as Christmas or birthdays). It is obvious that the kitchen has gained more and more importance in our home and it is vital to have it properly placed, decorated and equipped.

According to Janice Sugita, an interior designer in Beverly Hills who is applying Feng Shui principles to her projects, “designers need to determine customers’ requirements, based on the kitchen’s location and history and use more of the appropriate elements to enhance the Chi and make it favorable for the room.”

The kitchen must be a balanced space as it contains two major Elements: water and fireyin and yang.

Feng Shui kitchen can be decorated without spending thousands of dollars, as long as you respect a few recommendations:

  • Do not place fire near water. For example, placing the stove near the sink or the refrigerator, can create negative energy. If these items are already in place, use wood as a buffer between the two elements.
  • Keep your kitchen adequately lit and ventilated to preserve positive energy.
  • Maintain all your plumbing in functional, working order, so as not to lose your wealth.
  • Keep all sharp kitchen tools and implements in covered boxes and take them out only when used.
  • Use decoration in the kitchen according to your kitchen location on Bagua.
  • Keep all the surfaces clean and orderly, so they don’t create bad energy.

Since the kitchen is a special place for cooking, improving its Feng Shui will result into an important contribution to family and home welfare.

FENG SHUI FOR LIVING ROOMS:

feng-shui-vase2

In Feng Shui, living rooms are a welcoming environment which invite pleasant conversation and family activities. A Feng Shui living room is a yang area, so you can create the yin element by bringing in cushions with colours that fit the paint colours on the walls, plants and even a water fountain that flows continuously.

A very suitable Feng Shui element for living room is an aquarium. The light in the tank, along with the sound of the oxygenator or the water purifier creates an assembly that confers tranquility to your living room. And if you place a dragon next to an aquarium with carp fish, this will bring you luck for your wealth.

Other recommendations for an ideal Feng Shui living room are:

  • Avoid sharp corners in furniture.
  • Have paintings that reveal positive facts and images.
  • Create a comfortable environment with a fireplace, a rug on the floor, books and candles.
  • Maintain warm lighting and pale combinations for curtains.
  • Place a yellow chrysanthemum plant in your living room, as it represents happiness and optimism.

FENG SHUI FOR DINING ROOMS:

A dining room is regarded to be a very “Yin” room. Creating a peaceful place that encourages rejuvenation, rest and good health as a result of a proper digestion, are the ultimate goals of a Feng Shui dining room.

A Feng Shui dining room should have the dining table placed in the center of the room, with sufficient space on each side, if possible.

The best dinner tables are round, wooden ones, as they represent heavenly blessing. An even number of comfortable chairs is also the best option.

The first thing you need to do is get rid of clutter, such as dark furniture or bags, anything that blocks Chi’s flow.

Chi can be balanced in the room with a crystal chandelier hanging over the dining table, or improved with a mirror which reflects something pleasant in the room (such as a painting or piece of furniture).

FENG SHUI FOR ENTRANCES:

Feng Shui principles stipulate that entrances determine the happiness and wealth of a family. In order to obtain positive energy in these areas, you can apply the following:

  • In order for Chi to flow, make sure you do not have the staircase facing the doorway. If this already is the case, you can diminish the effect by placing a sculpture or a plant at the bottom of the staircase.
  • If the entrance lies at the end of a long hallway, balance the flow of Chi energy by hanging a crystal over the entrance.
  • Use a Feng Shui friendly paint colour to attract wealth and positive energy.
  • Placing small mirrors on the entrance walls, at a height that can reflect the light, creates the effect of larger entrance.
Feng Shui principles stipulate that entrances determine the happiness and wealth of a family. Click To Tweet

FENG SHUI FOR OFFICES:

The first step in achieving good Feng Shui for your office is removing all clutter.

Natural light is preferable in this room. Avoid exposure to fluorescent lights if possible, which can causes exhaustion. Replace with warm, soft lighting.

In Feng Shui practice, Chi energy is enhanced by plants placed in corners of the office. The best choice for a Feng Shui office are green plants as they encourage creativity, the emergence of new ideas and contribute to air filtering by recirculating the air and reducing toxins.

decorate-with-feng-shui

 

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FENG SHUI FOR LOVE:

Feng Shui will never replace self love, which is of course, a mandatory condition for being part of a couple. However, it can help you begin a love affair that can transform into a beautiful love relationship, if you so wish..

Self love is part of Feng Shui because it generates energies. And as energies attract other energies, hence you attract other people towards you. If you feel sufficient love for who you are, love energies will be drawn to you.

The most important areas in terms of love energies, according to Feng Shui, are the bedroom and the bathroom.

First, you must make sure your bedroom is prepared for a lover: two nightstands and two lamps, plenty of pillows (without exaggerating).

Get rid of all clutter – unfriendly items like cactuses, objects given to you by person you dislike and avoid having in your bedroom items that indicate “single” status, such as dolls.

Use whatever is suitable for you to create an environment that inspires romance, love or intimacy. Whether this includes candle sticks, different sized candles, yellow roses, a pink mirror frame or accessories, everything should be in pairs.

Make the bed and not a TV or other electronics, the central piece in your bedroom.

As for your bathroom, consider turning it into a spa to attract energy which is both sensual and healing. Use bright Feng Shui colours, such as red and white, in order to add Yang elements to this Yin room and woody plants to drain away excessive water or moisture.

Create an inviting ambiance with the help of candles, essential oils, and bamboo lucky pots. Keep everything in the bathroom clean, and cover bins and drains when not in use.

The most important Feng Shui areas in terms of love energies are the bedroom and the bathroom. Click To Tweet

FENG SHUI FOR WEALTH:

In Feng Shui, wealth means having more assets, properties and a successful business. It’s part of Feng Shui wealth principles that the more you give, the more you will have. This means that money donations will give you a feeling of abundance.

Symbols of abundance are a real support in this journey towards wealth and you can use them as follows in your decoration:

  • Keep yourself a ship of abundance (without cannons) and fill it with symbols of wealth(such as currencies from other countries or gems). Place it on a coffee table near your entrance.
  • Place a waterfall in the South West part of your home, as it will bring a lot of money luck and activate wealth luck too!
  • Place symbols in the dining area related to abundance ones (such as mirrors to reflect the table filled with food).
  • Place paintings of fruit on the walls.
  • Place a three legged toad under your sofa or under a chair, tied with a red thread for more energy, so you get support with paying the bills.

feng-shui-for-wealth

 

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FINAL THOUGHTS:

No matter what you decide to do with your new Feng Shui knowledge, make sure you always try to create harmony in the space around you. In my personal experience, you don’t need a huge budget or make a great deal of unnecessary purchases. You may already have most of the decorative items I have mentioned here. It’s simply a matter of reorganising a little and creating this cosy, homely feeling in each area of your home.
 

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