As winter looms, days darken and temperatures lower, we retreat inside our homes and deeper into ourselves.
Now, more than ever, our homes become our sanctuaries, and we have a few key ways to encourage positive chi, interior flow and abundant good energy.
Feng shui away my babies.
Feng shui is the practice of arranging objects and elements within an environment to vitalize and harmonize the flow of energy within it.
An ancient Chinese art, Feng shui translates to “the way of wind and water,” and is rooted in the Taoist belief in chi, the essential life force that inhabits all matter.
Chi is made of the opposing, inseparable forces of yin and yang, and balancing these elements through the practice of feng shui is thought to imbue a space/person with a positive energetic flow that invites and encourages peace and prosperity.
Feng shui classifies all material as belonging to one of the five elements; water, wood, fire, earth and metal. Operational feng shui becomes something of an equation, adding, subtracting or combining these materials in service of energetic flow.
Feng shui practitioners and principles aim to encourage the flow of positive chi while keeping the negative at bay and far away from the living space. While there are a wealth of ways to beautify, purify, and optimize a space, there are a few key hindrances and habits that you can do away with today.
Keep in mind that these are only suggestions. If, to paraphrase Marie Kondo, an item or arrangement sparks joy, proceed. If it delights you to decorate your space with big screen televisions, broken dishes, love letters from your ex, black ceilings, bonsai trees and animal remains, you do you, baby.
TV in the bedroom
A TV in the bedroom compromises the two primary functions of the space, to heal the body through rest and connect with others through intimacy — essentially, lying down and getting laid.
Add to the mix that a turned-off television operates as a mirror, a no-go near the bed.
“According to feng shui, placing a mirror directly opposite your bed can trigger nightmares, insomnia and other sleep-related problems. The belief is that, during sleep, the soul leaves the body, and waking to see its reflection can be unsettling, leading to night terrors,” notes Martin Seeley, sleep expert and CEO of MattressNextDay.
If you are dead set on having less sex and sleep in your life, you can still do yourself a solid and cover the televisions in your household (especially your bedroom) when not in use.
Cacti + bonsai
According to the principles of feng shui, plants with thorns, spikes and other such prickly presentations attract negative energy.
In a similar vein, or root as it were, bonsai trees are not encouraged for use in home decor as they represent stunted growth and unrealized potential.
Keep it lush, keep it green, and keep it lucky with positive, non-poke plants like a money tree, pothos or a peace lily.
Whether you keep the dead animals around to admire their beauty or reflect your power, taxidermy is a stitched and stretched symbol of death.
Converting the vital to the lifeless and holding it in that unnatural amber brings an energy of quiescence and by extension, depression.
The same goes for dead flowers, folks. They send the message that your home is where the living goes to die. Yikes.
If you don’t mind taking the stagnation with the stag horns, you can counterbalance the negativity with a plethora of live plants.
Unclog your drains and fix your faucets
The importance of proper plumbing is stressed by feng shui practitioners, as water systems are linked to financial viability.
As Suzanne Roynon of Interiors Therapy explains, “Water is a symbol of wealth and abundance in feng shui, but when it leaks or drips, it represents a loss of these precious energies. Those seemingly harmless leaks may be draining more than just your water bill!”
Similarly, a clogged drain can be seen as a blockage that prevents health and wealth from washing over you and energy from running through you.
As anyone with a Taurus placement and/or a toxic ex can attest, we often exhibit an uncanny need to hold on to broken things.
Unsurprisingly, this practice does not bode well for good vibes or optimal chi.
Chipped cups, cracked pottery and the remnants of failed relationships should be discarded to bring hope and harmony to the home front.
Broken clocks and outdated calendars are particularly negative influences, as they represent ruts of all kinds, stalled energies at best, and a shortened life span at worst.
Astrologer Reda Wigle researches and irreverently reports back on planetary configurations and their effect on each zodiac sign. Her horoscopes integrate history, poetry, pop culture and personal experience. She is also an accomplished writer who has profiled a variety of artists and performers, as well as extensively chronicled her experiences while traveling. Among the many intriguing topics she has tackled are cemetery etiquette, her love for dive bars, Cuban Airbnbs, a “girls guide” to strip clubs and the “weirdest” foods available abroad.