Susanne Schutz, founder and managing director of Suzhong Consulting, reveals how feng shui can play an important role not just in our homes but in our own health and well-being, too.
Classical feng shui uses the factors of direction, location and time to harness and tap into the qi (life energy) in our environment to improve our quality of life. Most people believe that it’s only used to increase wealth prospects – in fact, feng shui can do so much more.
According to this ancient Chinese science, the qi of your house feeds your own energy, and thereby affects your health and wellbeing. It goes without saying then that we would all like to have positive qi present in our homes, because when qi is blocked – by clutter or poor placement of furniture, for example – it can thwart our attempts to improve our health and wellbeing. And without good health, career and wealth prospects are usually also low.
So let’s take a look at a few very simple things we can all do to ensure better health and wellness in our homes:
Clutter: Nothing is more harmful to a free flow of energy than clutter. Clutter creates “energy blockages” and turns positive qi into negative qi, resulting in stress, anxiety, arguments and a general feeling of discomfort.
When de-cluttering, pay special attention to the main door area of your property, because this is where the qi enters. Get rid of old, broken and useless things that only collect negative energies. Similarly, makes sure that the foyer or entrance area inside your apartment is spacious, uncluttered and bright. And of course, we need to ensure unobstructed qi flow in our bedrooms, because this is where we spend one-third of our whole lives.
Traditionally, Chinese families thoroughly clean their living spaces before Chinese New Year to welcome the fresh energy of the coming year.
Light: Natural light brightens the mood, so it’s good to have as much natural light as you can around the entrance area of your apartment, and your study and living room. Artificial lighting can also lift energy levels, but only when it is directed towards the ceiling. When this type of light is directed downwards, it creates oppressive qi and should be avoided.
Plants: Sharp corners in an apartment can upset the qi balance and result in feelings of discomfort – especially when they are pointed directly at the door of a room, or at a bed or desk. Use plants to obscure and soften these sharp corners.
Kitchen: The kitchen is of major importance in feng shui, since it’s in the kitchen that the food for your family is prepared. If your kitchen has stagnant or unhealthy qi flow, it will affect the quality of your food, resulting in health issues. As such, the stove remains a pivotal point in any kitchen, so ensure it is placed in a favourable and suitable location. Most importantly, it should not be placed directly opposite the sink as this situation creates a serious affliction called “Fire-Water-Clash”, which can be responsible for a wave of food-related health problems for all members of the household.
Ceiling: Sleeping or sitting directly below a ceiling beam for extended periods of time can cause considerable discomfort. The beam compresses the qi flow and directs negative energy downwards. Sleeping underneath a ceiling beam can cause nightmares and restless sleep, while working at a desk underneath a beam often results in migraines, neck and shoulder pains. The simple solution is to just move your bed or desk from under the beam to benefit from free-flowing and harmonious qi.