Living More Sane in a Crazy World

“This is a great opportunity to reorganize, recalibrate and get ready for the new world, which will be different.”

~~Peg Donahue, Feng Shui Connections

Life is crazy. Unpredictable.  Even in the best of circumstances. 

At any one given time, someone you know is going through something unimaginable.  Someone you know is going through a huge shift – maybe for the better and maybe for worse.  Anyone else hate change?

It’s ok.  It’s ok to not be best friends with change.

Shifts in our outer world can also bring shifts to our inner mind and psyche (which is also why Feng Shui is so important).  We question what we are doing and why.  Shifts can take us to places we don’t understand.  Often, the things that are the good for us, can be challenging.  The awesome thing though is that with each shift, we can get better and better with coping.

We asked our expert Feng Shui professionals for some of their tips in dealing with stress, hard times, how to raise their vibe (even when they aren’t feeling it).  What they told us was plain and simple, and brilliant.  Maybe a bit of common sense – but then some of us aren’t thinking clearly right now!  We got this!

Ways to Raise Your Vibe

Take what resonates and Leave. The. Rest.

  • The obvious – but let’s say it anyway: Stay at home if this is what has been enforced. Wash your hands and disinfect often – especially after touching food and money. Clean those doorknobs, remotes, phones and light switches.
  • Tackle that ‘honey do’ list; clean a closet, deep clean an area you have been meaning to get to, reorganize kitchen cupboards, paint a room…take advantage of this time to thoughtfully and purposefully move forward to improve your space.
  • Try to stick with a normal routine as much as possible: Laundry, sweeping, straightening. Routines in uncertainty are especially helpful for kids.  Make a list to help them see visually what’s happening each day and even give them choices and some control as to those choices.  If you don’t know what’s going to happen – imagine how they are feeling.
  • Listen to music you love, uplifting or peaceful, quiet or loud. Get your dance party on if you want!
  • Get outside! Take a walk, get some sunshine, breathe fresh air. Even stand on your porch if you can’t go far. Maybe do some gardening.
  • Don’t get on social media as much as is possible. Or at least follow positive accounts and people.
  • Rest and sleep more.
  • Help someone else. Take groceries or supplies to a friend who can’t get out.  Try to go alone and drop the shopping off without making close contact.
  • Reach out. Call family and friends just to hear their voices and to check-in using technology such as Skype, Zoom, phone calls, video calling, and more.  This works for virtual play dates too.  The laughter heard when a group of kids is on a Zoom conversation and they can all see each other is awesome and will lift any spirit!
  • Give yourself quiet time. Light candles and do a daily meditation with a focus to ground and expand energy out. Fear is so contracting – expand with love.  Light incense, chant, stand in the sun.
  • Move. Add yoga to your routine if you don’t already – there are a ton of teachers doing online classes and videos now – for free.  Exercise, walk, and stretch.
  • Lose yourself…in a book. Read books that you have been waiting to read for a long time, that you didn’t have “time” for before.  Whether pleasure reading or to learn something new, reading can calm your mind, soothe your soul, and even escape for a bit. Lots of downloadables available for free now too.
  • Get creative – cooking and baking, coloring, painting, writing. Don’t underestimate the value of a 2PM dance off! Laugh!

I’m writing notes of thanks to all the kind souls in my building who have volunteered to help people get groceries, especially the elderly. This crisis is bringing out the best in some people and I want to make sure they are acknowledged!

Carol M. Olmstead, Feng Shui for Real Life

Last but not least: make sure your Feng Shui is in place.  Especially take notice of the health gua, but so many others are relevant now too: career and wealth to ensure you nurture your work life and bank account; relationships so you don’t kill your quarantine buddies; creativity so you don’t get bored; helpful people because we all need a ton of grace and goodness from the universe and our helpers right now.

Expert Contributors:

Linda Bischoff, Avalon Lane Studio

Erin Bowers, Synergetic Spaces

Maureen Calamia, Luminous Spaces Feng Shui

Susan Chu, Susan M. Chu

Catherine Dean, Catherine Dean Feng Shui

Peg Donahue, Feng Shui Connections

Linda Ellson, Feng Shui Your World

Angela Higgins, The Nourished Life

Trisha Keel, Tomorrow’s Key

 

 

Joan Law, Feng Shui Joan’s Way

Carmel Malone-Quane, Create with Carmel

Dragana Milosevic

Carol Olmstead, Feng Shui for Real Life

Denise Osborne, Author

Bridget Saraka, Feng Shui by Bridget

Gwynne Warner, 10000 Blessings Feng Shui

Expert Contributors:

Linda Bischoff, Avalon Lane Studio

Erin Bowers, Synergetic Spaces

Maureen Calamia, Luminous Spaces Feng Shui

Susan Chu, Susan M. Chu

Catherine Dean, Catherine Dean Feng Shui

Peg Donahue, Feng Shui Connections

Linda Ellson, Feng Shui Your World

Angela Higgins, The Nourished Life

Trisha Keel, Tomorrow’s Key

Joan Law, Feng Shui Joan’s Way

Carmel Malone-Quane, Create with Carmel

Dragana Milosevic

Carol Olmstead, Feng Shui for Real Life

Denise Osborne, Author

Bridget Saraka, Feng Shui by Bridget

Gwynne Warner, 10000 Blessings Feng Shui 

Let it Go, Let it Go, Let it Go

We don’t have to try very hard to find signs that the holidays are fast approaching. Stores are putting up their decorations, many radio stations are playing holiday music and people are already starting to make their holiday “to-do” lists. Read from Kristi Stangeland, the importance of balance and intention in the holidays.

For many of us, these signs of the season are sure-fire stress triggers. Instead of sugar plums, they conjure up visions of lists dancing in their heads: the baking list, the shopping list, the card list, etc.

Do you have a laundry list of things you think you need to do in order to make the holidays “perfect?” For those of us who are guilty of list-overload, I suggest we rethink our holidays.

What would happen if we didn’t:

  • Send holiday cards to people we haven’t seen in 20 years…
  • Try to replicate the picture-perfect centerpiece from that glossy home magazine…
  • Bake 10 different kinds of holiday cookies…
  • Wrap every gift with shiny paper and bows…
  • Host a holiday open house a week before Christmas…

This year I suggest we adopt a Feng Shui approach to the holidays. In an effort to find more serenity in our lives we can do more than de-clutter and re-organize our physical environments. We can also re-evaluate how we manage our time.

Here is a specific technique to help de-clutter our holiday “to-do” lists so we can focus on the things that actually bring us the greatest joy at this time of year.

  • Set aside 30 minutes of time when you will not be interrupted.
  • Take nine minutes to write down all the items on your holiday “to-do” list. You know what I’m talking about: cooking, shopping, wrapping, baking, hosting, etc.
  • Take three deep breaths to clear your mind.  Then set a timer for six minutes and sit in silence, with your eyes downcast or closed. Let your thoughts come and go.
  • When the six minutes are up, review your list with “fresh eyes.” Ask yourself: Does anyone care if this happens? How could I do this differently and with less effort? Can someone else take on this task?
  • Then make a commitment to cross off the items that feel heavy and no longer serve you. Focus instead on those tasks that you truly enjoy.

This kind of mental organizing and decluttering can be very energizing. When we allow ourselves to let go of unrealistic or stressful obligations, we’re apt to discover that those “to dos” that we actually do undertake will be more enjoyable, because we can focus more time on them.

So if you’d rather tap into your inner artist and make your cookies your canvas, then pass on hosting the holiday dinner for 20. Chances are your cookies will be a bigger hit than the green bean casserole anyway.

Here’s to a clutter free holiday. Cheers!

 

Kristi Stangeland is the founder of Feng Shui Consulting Service.  She holds a certificate from the BTB Feng Shui™ Masters Training Program, begun by Professor Thomas Lin Yun. Read more about Kristi.

 

Create A Meditation Space With Feng Shui

Feng shui is a philosophy developed in ancient China that outlines positive ways in which to organize yourself in your environment. Meditation is a practice in which you can learn to become familiar with your inner landscape. Both feng shui and meditation are used to generate harmony and peace within your life. Learn more about creating a quiet space by Anjie Cho

Meditation, Anjie ChoWhy not use feng shui to create a sacred space in which to meditate that can support and improve your meditation practice?

Define a Space

Select a dedicated space that you can routinely go back to for your meditation practice. It can be the corner of your bed, a room in your home, or a place outside in your backyard. My meditation space is a quiet section of my living room that faces a river view. Since it’s not in the commanding position, I’ve set up a mirror so I can see behind me to put me in a relaxing and calm mental space. It is okay if you cannot find a perfectly quiet spot. Life is full of distraction, and part of meditation is to learn to accept the interruptions.

You can further differentiate your space by sitting on a special pillow, cushion or blanket to define your place. I have a couple of buckwheat zafu cushions specifically designed for meditation. This can help you to dedicate and define your special “spot.”

Dedicate and Clear the Space

After you have selected your meditation space and defined it physically, it is of utter importance to clear and dedicate the area energetically. Space clearing dedicates the invisible energy of space so you can start fresh and set your intention for the space, the particular moment and for your life.

In feng shui, oranges and orange peels represent vibrant, life-affirming energy. Orange essence is refreshing, happy and contributes positive, fresh, and brightening energy to our inner and outer environments. You can use 9 drops of orange essential oil in an aromatherapy diffuser to transform your area into a space with vibrant, life-giving, positive energy. Remember, when you clear the space of the existing energy, be sure to replace it with positive intention.

Add a Crystal for Clarity

Feng shui crystals are used to adjust the flow of energy in a space. They are particularly effective for bringing light, brilliance and clarity to your meditation practice. Feng shui crystal balls are made of faceted, leaded glass. For this application, purchase a crystal that is a minimum of 40mm and place in the center of your meditation space, above your head where you’re sitting or just in front of you so you can see it. The ball should be hung with a red string in a length that is a multiple of 9, for example 18”, 27”, 36”, etc.

Use these three simple feng shui tips to create your own sacred meditation place to create harmony and peace in your inner and outer spaces.

 

Anjie ChoAnjie Cho is a registered New York State Architect and Feng Shui Interior Designer.  She has created beautiful and nourishing environments throughout New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and beyond.  She is also co-founder of the Mindful Design Feng Shui School. Read more about Anjie.

 

Article/Photo Source:  Create a Meditation Space with Feng Shui

The Power of Stillness

Learn from Kristi Stangeland how the power of stillness and meditation can make a difference to help you make connections, to grow, to learn, and discover the wonder in ourselves.Buddha, Meditation

“The Buddha clearly taught that even if one has great knowledge if his mind is not quiet, then the knowledge is worthless. The heart must be still to learn.”

Dalai Lama: What Matters Most, Conversations on Anger, Compassion, and Action by Noriyuki Ueda

I recently researched the Black Sect Feng Shui tradition versus Northern Geomancy. My interest in the latter stems from my heritage, as my father’s parents emigrated from Norway. I wanted to jump into Northern Geomancy and Feng Shui to make amazing connections. One of my first steps was to make a connection between the runes and trigrams. I looked at color associated with guas versus runes, definitions, polarity and elements. I took the first nine runes and compared them to the eight guas and the T’ai Chi. I calculated the numerology of the trigrams related to the position of the runes.

But despite my enthusiasm, I was floundering, frustrated and not making good connections.

I then realized that I needed to settle down and take it slowly with meditation. This is not my style (I have a client who tells me, “You like quick!”) but every part of me told me that this was how I could achieve a better understanding of the connection between Feng Shui and the Runes of the Northern Tradition. I decided to follow the spirit of an exercise in Nigel Pennick’s book Secrets of the Runes and meditate on the Elements (including Northern and Chinese) and related runes and guas. This practice helped me substantially deepen my connection with the guas. For example, Gen is generally thought of as mountain or knowledge. But when you read the interpretation of the I Ching, the essence is stillness.

Through this process, I was able to make the connections, because as Buddha reminds us, “The heart must be still to learn.” Indeed, some of the greatest minds in history, including Einstein, Dali and Aristotle, have been proponents of using different kinds of meditation techniques to release creativity to discover “a-ha!” moments.

Taking the time to ponder the trigrams through meditation gave me a much deeper understanding of the bagua and helped me see connections to the runes. So when struggling to find a solution for a vexing problem or a way to enhance your creativity, remind yourself (as I do) to slow down and just do it! Meditate.

 

Kristi Stangeland, MeditationKristi Stangeland is the founder of FSC, a company dedicated to helping corporate and private clients realize their goals using Feng Shui practices. Prior to establishing FSC, Kristi, who holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a CPA license. Read more about Kristi.

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