A Little Bit of Wind, A Little Bit of Water Why You Should Feng Shui Your Space
Feeling stuck? Struggling with anxiety? Just need a change? As we transition into the fall season, it’s a great time to learn about welcoming the optimal amount of positive energy into our lives.
Feeling stuck? Struggling with anxiety? Just need a change? As we transition into the fall season, it’s a great time to learn about welcoming the optimal amount of positive energy into our lives. Feng shui, which directly translates to “wind-water,” is a Chinese philosophy that promotes harmony and fluidity within your environment. This balancing of energy will eventually influence other aspects of your life, such as your relationships, career and health. We spoke with Susan Chan of Feng Shui Creative to see how feng shui can work for BWB and beyond.
How did feng shui come into your life?
Feng shui has always been subconsciously ever-present in Susan’s life due to her Chinese heritage. However, if she had to identify a specific feng shui origin story, it would be back in 2002. Susan was living in a trademark NYC apartment in the West Village: small, wonky, and all out of sorts. On top of that, she was working from home as a graphic designer and often had people passing through her home. “It just felt off,” Susan reflects. “I didn’t know what was wrong – it felt like the energy was stuck.” Seeking better productivity in her work and more peace in her home, she found a solution in feng shui.
What are the benefits of feng shui?
While the benefits are abundant, Susan acknowledges that it all depends on the person and what he or she is looking for in that particular stage of his or her life. Usually, this falls somewhere in the realm of work, money, or relationships. That being said, the general overall benefit of integrating feng shui into your life is a feeling of lightness and calmness.
What is the correlation between Chinese astrology and feng shui?
In Susan’s practice, one of the first questions she asks her clients is what their date of birth is so that she can identify their Chinese zodiac sign. “It tells me what energy the universe is holding for them in that particular year.” For instance, if a client wanted to start a new business but their astrology said that this year would be slower, Susan can use this information to better guide her client’s goals and then recommend the appropriate feng shui solutions.
What should we look for when moving into a new apartment or house?
If there’s one basic rule of thumb to follow when it comes to feng shui in a home, it’s all about the front door. “This is where opportunity comes your way,” Susan explains. For good energy/qi, you want to make sure the entrance to your home is well-manicured and clean. If necessary, you should fix anything that is broken (steps, doorbell, pots, etc.).
When opportunity and luck enter your home, you want that energy to stay. If you’re looking at a new apartment or house, make sure that your front door is not facing a back door or window. This set-up lets all the new, good energy immediately leave the home. In feng shui, good energy that enters the home and stays can eventually make its way into your body and your life.
What are some ways we can implement feng shui in the office?
A general concept that can prove extremely useful in work situations is what’s called the “command position.” This is essentially the seat (in any environment) in which you are facing the entrance to the room. Make use of this strategy when negotiating a deal, initiating a confrontation, asking for a raise, and any other situation where you want to look and feel assertive! Susan explains that the idea behind the command position is reflected in ancient China during warring times, when defense strategies largely involved height and visibility (think: The Great Wall of China). “In that respect, it’s just a matter of being in the most optimal position you can be in.”
Here are a few other ways you can easily feng shui your office space:
- Lighting: Get rid of those depressing, bleak office lights! Replace the bulbs with warmer ones for a cozier, “sunny” feel.
- Plants: Bring a little bit of the outside in. The natural element will help balance out the harsh, metal element that is common in corporate offices.
- Scents: Feeling sluggish or lacking motivation? Invigorate with citrus. Scatterbrained and unable to focus? Ground yourself with sandalwood. Aromatherapy is your best friend for productivity!
What are some things we can do to prepare our homes for the fall season?
Feng shui is ultimately rooted in the balance of yin and yang. When we enter the fall season, we transition from yang to yin. Yin is more about staying in and sleeping more! Susan suggests revamping your space to feel more comfy and cozy with features like textured blankets, fluffy pillows, or darker colors.
Originally from Los Angeles, Alicia lived in Shanghai for 11 years before moving back to the states to attend the University of Miami, where she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and minors in art and philosophy. Currently residing in New York City, Alicia applies her knowledge of strategic communication and design in her career. She enjoys painting, rugby, exploring, and more often than not, you’ll find her petting someone’s dog.