Saturday, January 4, 2014

Start the New Year without Regret

The New Year brings with it a host of new things – new hopes, new dreams, new resolutions – especially as we look back and consider what we’d like to achieve in the days ahead. Often though, we beat ourselves up for not achieving our goals soon after setting them, which just makes it that much more difficult to achieve them. (This is why I typically skip the whole resolution thing – I always feel like I’m setting myself up for a fall.)

So this year, I’m developing a simple plan. I’m focusing my attention on the practical – those things that I know can make a difference and are not so lofty that I can’t achieve. I’m starting with a simple three-step process using feng shui as my guide.

The first step is what I’m calling feng shui maintenance. What I mean by this is just this: fix what needs to be fixed. Doesn’t sound too sexy I know, but it can have a powerful impact on your life. Feng shui is based on the premise that our homes are extensions of ourselves – which as we look around and see the various objects and styles we’ve selected, makes sense.

When you take this premise a level or two deeper, as we do in feng shui, different aspects of our homes represent different aspects of our lives (e.g., career, relationships, prosperity, etc.), and even the systems (e.g., plumbing and electrical), appliances and various objects in the home can affect our quality of life because of what they represent.

For instance, some feng shui experts focus solely on health and how our homes can reflect our own physical well-being. Our plumbing for instance is more than just a complex set of pipes but a channel for our emotions. In feng shui, the water element represents our emotions, so when there is a block in our plumbing it can represent an emotional block we may be having in our lives. This doesn’t mean you won’t need a plumber if you address the emotional issue but it does show how our homes can be more than mundane physical structures.

Consider too the appliances in your kitchen – a place in your home that represents prosperity because this is where we bring, prepare and cook all our food (a symbol of abundance). If they are not in working order, this can have an effect on the food we serve. In feng shui, the stove represents the element of fire, which is a strong generator of energy or chi. If it is not working, you are limiting the amount of energy or support you need to attract greater abundance into your life.

The fixes don’t need to be big – sometimes it’s simply changing a light bulb (in feng shui, this adds chi to a space) or swapping out the batteries on your smoke detectors (creating a greater sense of security in your home) or adding salt to your water softener (are there some challenging emotional situations that could use a softer touch?).

Each of these fixes, even the small maintenance items, can add up to big changes in how you feel about your home. When these things no longer weigh on you, you can appreciate your home for what it offers and not what you have to do in it. And that’s the crux of it. How you feel about your home. You want to walk into your home feeling uplifted, welcomed and supported. This is good feng shui. Maintenance is a first key step.

Next time, I’ll cover Step 2: Clutter Clearing but right now, I have some light bulbs to change, and a table to wax, and some salt to purchase, oh and a dishwasher that needs repair.  

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