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JUNK IN THE TRUNK

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What do you think of when you hear the term “junk in the trunk”? The phrase became popular with hip hoppers and rappers appreciatively referring to women with ample butts. (After watching the Olympics last summer, I think the term can also apply to some of our talented male athletes, too!) Our butts are behind us. Makes it somewhat hard to see what’s going on back there. What’s all this got to do with feng shui?

Just because I can’t see my butt doesn’t mean it isn’t getting bigger! It takes discipline and hard work to keep it in shape and that’s true of your feng shui, too. Practicing feng shui, we know that clutter drains us of chi (energy) and puts blocks us mentally from getting things done. Often we find a big “trunk” (drawer, bin, closet) and throw all the clutter and junk in there, close the lid, and forget about it. On the surface our desks and our living/ working space looks clutter-free so we get a temporary jolt of good feng shui. We’ve put the clutter problem behind us. Or have we?

Tossing all the clutter inside a storage unit of some kind does help a little bit. But eventually, we’re going to open that closet door or that drawer and see the jumbled mess contained within. That sinking feeling of “where do I begin to clear up this mess?” is a sign that your chi is being drained but the clutter. It’s much better to spend a few minutes each day putting away your stuff, organizing your desktop, and clearing the way for the next day than letting it pile up into a bigger problem to solve later on. If you’re trying to de-clutter an entire room or building, do it in smaller increments until you have the entire place under control so that you don’t feel overwhelmed by the task.

It takes time to get into the daily organizational habit. One spring-cleaning per year is a good start, but does not yield results unless you keep up with the maintenance. You wouldn’t expect to reshape your gluts with only one hard workout, would you?

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DO TRY THIS AT HOME

 

"Big Chair (Thomasville)"  (c)Katy Allgeyer

"Big Chair (Thomasville)" (c)Katy Allgeyer

SURVIVING IS IMPORTANT

 “Surviving is important. Thriving is elegant.” ~ Maya Angelou

The runaway success–indeed, the survival for several years of seasons!–of the TV show “Survivor” proves that a  large number of the viewing public is fascinated with whether or not they could last under primitive living conditions. Then again, maybe the show’s popularity just proves that people want to see girls in skimpy clothing eating raw kangaroo meat covered with flies.

But regardless of whether or not you watch television, you may be interested to know that many of the principles of Feng Shui originated as survival techniques. The ancestors of our ancestors who lived in caves knew that it was important not to turn one’s back to the cave entrance. If you did, you could be devoured by a cave dwelling beast (lions and tigers and bears, oh my!), or, a rival tribe could come and steal your fire, your food, and your family.

It was in this way that the idea of positioning the bed and the stove and the desk so that the door to the room can be easily seen was born. In this placement, one feels able to relax and “let one’s guard down” (notice the idiom that evolved as a direct result of this principle). Of course, the ideal furniture placement can not always work within the limitations of the architecture of our homes and offices. This is where a Feng Shui expert can offer you alternate solutions to achieve the desired peace of mind.

Ch’i Whiz! It Really Does Feel Different

DO try this at home (when you are bored with eating bonbons and being waited on hand and foot by your husband):

Take a room that has only one entry and place a chair in the middle of the room with the back facing the door. If you have other people around, ask them to give you some time to settle into your room, but eventually have them move around in the hallway outside the door and come into the room occasionally without telling you when they are coming in.

Now, sit in the chair so that you are unable to see the door. Sit there for awhile, try to get a sense of the ch’i energy surrounding you and pay attention to how it feels. Now, try to read a magazine.

Notice how you feel. Do you feel uneasy and unable to concentrate on the magazine? Is your mind constantly wandering to the activity in the hallway and on alert mode so that you won’t be startled when someone comes into the room and surprises you?

Ok, once you’ve experienced that feeling, turn the chair around to where you have a clear view of the door as you sit and read your magazine. Notice how you feel. Is your posture more at ease? Are you able to focus more intently on the task of reading the magazine? You have now witnessed the importance of placement for  peace of mind based on the principle of survival.

THRIVING IS ELEGANT  

The ancient cave dwellers painted their cave walls mostly to serve  sacred ceremonial purposes and did not have to worry about matching the drapery fabric to the wall paint. Today, we express ourselves through the way we decorate our homes and the myriad of choices we make as to color, style, space, objects, art, and placement. But even though we have come a long way from the cave and the necessity of being in constant survival mode, we can feel a connection to our ancestors and benefit from their wisdom by incorporating the principles of Feng Shui into our modern lives. 

 

 

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Filed under Command Position, Feng Shui, Feng Shui Home, Self Help

FLOWERS ADD FENG SHUI

flowers
Flowers add Feng Shui By Fishgirl energy to any setting. Feeling down? Plop a colorful bouquet on your desk and watch your mood rise! Want to add a festive touch to your dinner party? Flowers in the center of the table create instant party panache. Outside, a “deadzone” can instantly be activated by hanging plants or potted flowers. You don’t need to spend a lot of money. Wildflowers from your yard in a bud vase work just as well.

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IF YOU DON’T LOVE IT, SHOVE IT (The Feng Shui By Fishgirl Challenge)

Fu Dogs make great guardians but if you hate the way they look, get rid of 'em!

Fu Dogs make great guardians but if you hate the way they look, get rid of 'em!

William Morris, England’s most famous designer / craftsman who inspired the Arts & Crafts Movement in the mid 1800’s said “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Whether he knew it or not, Willam Morris was practicing Feng Shui.

One of the first things we learn when studying Feng Shui is to get rid of anything that is broken or that isn’t working. A clock that sits on your mantelpiece that no longer tells time may be a beautiful antique, but, if it is in disrepair it is not helping your ch’i (energy). And if it isn’t helping, it is most likely hurting. It may be the reason why your romance has stalled. Or your business contacts have dried up. Or your diet isn’t working. The mischief it is causing for you would depend on exactly what area of your home that your broken clock is located in. I would recommend that you take your broken clocks to an horologist immediately (look in your yellow pages, not your bordello).

I love a good challenge, don’t you? So, let me give you The Feng Shui By Fishgirl Challenge…this is an exercise not for the weak of heart. You must be willing to go the distance. To evaluate with brutal honesty. To discard with ruthless abandon. To commit to paying for routine maintenance on anything broken that you have decided is worth keeping. I want to challenge you to go through your home room by room and make a list (or a pile) of everything in it that falls into the William Morris catagories of either [1] Not Useful, or, [2] Not Beautiful. Let me give you some examples of both.

IF IT AIN’T BROKEN…

Remember the old adage,’ if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it ‘? Well, I’m telling you if it IS broken: FIX IT! If it can’t be fixed, junk it or give it away to the Salvation Army. Some of the “Not Useful” things I have seen in client’s homes which you may also have in yours are:

*Clothing that doesn’t fit, or is stained or ripped.
*Stacks of old stereo equipment that doesn’t work anymore.
*Dead plants, or plants with just a sickly little stem poking out of a huge pot.
*The aforementioned broken clock, or watch, that no longer keeps time.
*Books…. ie: toss out the old computer manuals at the same time you upgrade your computer.
*Broken/cracked glass still in picture frames or mirrors.
*Newspaper bundles waiting to be read or recycled.
*Lamps needing light bulbs.
*Curtain rods dangling.
*Candles that are melted beyond use.
*Various electrical appliances that no longer work.
*Bath towels that are tattered beyond belief.
*Wallpaper peeling down.
*Faucets dripping.
*Doorbells that don’t ring.

IF YOU DON’T LOVE IT, SHOVE IT
There is always some example of something that is not beautiful, yet, it is cherished and we love it so we will keep it. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. We love something, it becomes beautiful because we love it. So, do not think I am asking you to throw away anything that is not “good looking”. Or conversely, to keep things only because they are beautiful.

If you do not believe it to be beautiful, it doesn’t belong in your house. That means, if you don’t love it: shove it! We’ve spoken in past newsletters about how we imbue either positive or negative ch’i onto objects and spaces. Think about all the negative ch’i buildup being created by that Limoges nut dish your Aunt Bessie gave you last Christmas. Now, there’s nothing wrong with Limoges (and hopefully, there’s nothing wrong with your Aunt Bessie !). And chances are, she spent too much for it. This tends to add to the guilt we feel if we don’t really like it and don’t want it in our home. However, if your crib is furnished in 1950’s Modern, the fancy Limoges nut dish looks totally out of place; you probably do not like it but feel some obligation to keep it, right?

We all have a version of the nutdish. It’s time for all of us to let go of our attachment to keeping anything in our sacred home space that we aren’t absolutely in love with, or at the very least, anything that doesn’t please us. I hereby give you permission to remove those items from your home today!

Some examples of things that people hang on to that fall into this catagory:

*Gifts (especially given by family members).
*Inherited objects (furniture, paintings, etc) that aren’t your taste.
*Plants that aren’t flourishing.
*Expensive things (we have a harder time letting go of things we paid a lot of money for even if we hate the piece after we’ve bought it).
*Things that connect us to our past and who we once were, but that no longer represent who we are now and where we are going.

By the way, if you now have a pile of unwanted things in your space, be sure to donate them to charity or have a yard sale. If you have a pile of things you intend to repair, make sure you take care of it quickly. If you must leave the pile there for awhile, you want to be sure your pile is in a benign area of your home. The last thing you want to do is gather up all of your broken down items and stack them in your Health Area, your Love & Relationship Area or your Wealth Area until you get around to it. As always, if you are unsure of where these areas are located within your home, contact Feng Shui By Fishgirl for a professional assessment.

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Filed under Feng Shui, Getting Organized, Qi, Self Help, Uncategorized

6 OUTDOOR FENG SHUI TIPS FROM THE FLOW DOCTOR

Sheri Ruston’s book “Feng Shui Made Simple:Room By Room” manages to condense an overview of feng shui principles in less than 75 pages. That makes it a perfect summer read as well as a timesaver for those looking to implement some feng shui ideas immediately. I asked Sheri (a.k.a. The Flow Doctor) for some tips on how to energize outdoor spaces. Sheri graciously allowed me to share an excerpt from her book:

1. Welcome mats are great for welcoming friends as well as new opportunities to come your way. Or if you prefer, you can hang a welcome sign on your door at eye level.

2. Placing plants and flowers at your front entrance in beautiful, rich-looking containers can give your porch a facelift. Just be sure to stay away from unfriendly cactus or plants with pointed, spiky leaves.

3.A painted front door can uplift the energy outside your home and also dazzle your entrance. A green door symbolizes money, a red door represents good fortune and a purple door signifies spirituality. Or pick a color that you love. If you can‟t paint your door, no need to worry. Just use a welcome mat or a welcome sign to make your entrance inviting.

4. Windchimes are great for circulating the energy outside your home. You can place them anywhere on your property. I have one on my front porch to keep the positive energy ringing in.

5. Water fountains are considered to be lucky elements outside your home. They can be placed in your front or back yard. Since flowing water is associated with money, abundance and prosperity, the water should always flow towards your house. Just make sure that the water stays clean and flowing.

6. If your driveway is on a decline it is said that your money will flow out of your house. A quick fix would be to place big potted plants on either side of the end of your driveway to stabilize your money.

Thanks, Sheri!

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WHAT’S PARIS HILTON GOT TO DO WITH FENG SHUI?

No celebrity could be more “high maintenance” than Paris Hilton.
Watching Paris–the girl who has everything– on the
“The Simple Life” struggle to comprehend what having less
of everything is like for the common folk was hilarious. What the show
didn’t really convey, however, is that there are some advantages
to having less material things around to deal with.

Photo courtesy of babble.com

Photo courtesy of babble.com

In Feng Shui terms, less is more. Less clutter translates to more
room for opportunity to come in. Having less ‘stuff’ also means
having less things to worry about . The less we worry, the less
stress we have in our lives. Just as it’s crucial to keep up with
our own health, it’s important to keep our ‘stuff’ in good working
order to maintain the health of our Feng Shui.

Ever notice how things seem to break down all at once? Light bulbs,
smoke detector batteries, computers, printers, fax machines, cars…
as soon as you find out you have one thing to replace or repair, another one crops up almost simultaneously. As a rule, good Feng Shui dependson having things in tip-top shape. If you have a broken clock or watch, for example, this is very symbolic of opportunities frozen in time. Many people have antique clocks in their homes that are no longer working. The solution is to get them tick-tocking again a.s.a.p.

FENG SHUI MAINTENANCE CHECKLIST:

1. Look for any broken items around your home and office.
Take them in to be fixed or toss ‘em and get new ones.

2. Surround yourself with things that you truly love. If you have any negative feelings towards furniture and equipment in your office, replace them whenever possible.

3. Backup your computer data and delete junk files regularly for
clutter-free efficiency. Get memory upgrades to handle your workload.

4. Keep a replenishable supply of light bulbs, batteries, and printer inks, handy.

5. Maintaining your auto should be automatic: check tires, wipers, oil each month.

6. Take care of your eyes, teeth, and body. Schedule doctor
appointments 6 months in advance. You’re worth it,
and as Paris says, “That’s hot!”.

What stuff do you need to throw out? Do your inventory and let us know what you tossed!

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Filed under Celebrities, Feng Shui, Feng Shui Home, Getting Organized, Self Help, Uncategorized

SHA SHA SHA SHATTERED: Can feng shui stop the breaking glasses?

Photo courtesy of Wii Have A Problem

Photo courtesy of Wii Have A Problem

I recently got an intriquing email from someone I will call “J”. It made me recall an earlier incident I had with my own feng shui. On a lighter note, check out the “Wii Have a Problem” blog—it’s a hilarious look at one household’s problems with breaking glass via Wii.
Hi Katy,

I hope this finds you well. Just this evening I happened upon your blog and it’s just great! I am an Interior Designer with an Architect hubby and we are really curious about Feng Shui. Also, we recently moved into a new house. Well, it’s not really very new; built in 1961 with one previous owner who died in the house.

So, I have had an interesting problem since we moved in. We, and mainly myself, keep breaking glass. More glass has been shattered in the 2 months we’ve been here than I think I have EVER had in my lifetime.

Is there some kind of clearing I can do?

I know this is a quirky problem but I’d really appreciate your input.

Blessings,
J

Here’s what I wrote back:
Hi J,
The good news is you already know the root cause of the problem (the previous owner died in the house). Yes, there are space clearing methods that can be done. When dealing with this type of problem
it is best to use a professional because whenever dealing with paranormal energy, you are dealing with the occult and portals that are opened need to be closed properly so that no harm comes to anyone as a result of trying to cure the problem.

That being said, I had a very similar experience when I moved into a loft in downtown LA a few years ago. The first 3 months I was there, I was dropping and breaking glasses (and so were guests) and this had never happened to me before. I actually felt something pushing my hand to knock a glass over.

Through research and synchronicity–and oddly enough my own dreams and the dream of an overnight guest– I discovered and confirmed at the library that the original use of the building was a bootleg saloon back in the roaring twenties during prohibition.

Spirits will often seek out those that are sensitive to knowing their presence or seeing them. IE: others could live in your house and may never have the same problems you do because they are “immune” / unconscious and unreachable. Sometimes children will be the way the spirits will come in because children are more open and don’t have defenses up. You must be particularly susceptible. I should ask: has there been any recent activity that may have indicated you accidentally invited the ghost to show up? IE: playing Ouija board, reading tarot cards, having a psychic or astrology reading at your home or over the phone from your home…even telling ghost stories can sometimes trigger paranormal portals to open.

Are the incidences still occurring since you wrote to me May 28th? Do they happen at certain times of day or at any time randomly? Does the glass shattering happen in one location or many in the home? Please get back to me and I’ll give you more information.
Best,
Katy

Katy,

Thank you for getting back to me. I’m in a rush and will have to keep it a bit short, but so excited to talk to you about this!!

The glass has continued to break, same spot in the house and usually by me. It’s in the kitchen which happens to be in the Marriage corner of the house – feng shui. Not at any particular time of day, but it never happens at night for some reason.

The area used to be a farm and other than the previous owner dying, nothing i know of has happened on the land, except for finding the neighbors dead bunny rabbit while i was gardening. i’m hoping this is random.

i pulled out my tarot cards only once and that was just a few days ago. no other invitations. that being said, i’ve always had a, “touch of the gift” as i call it, so i think that’s why i’m picking up on things.
i’m having the house cleared professionally very soon. i’ve felt it needed it since we moved in and just haven’t had the time.
J

Dear J,
I’m glad you are hiring a pro. I hope you got good references as there are a lot of inexperienced people out there. If they are a feng shui expert, expect to receive a space clearing that involves smoke (sage or incense), possibly a sound cure (Tibetan bells, for example, or loud clapping), intentions for banishing and clearing the space, as well
as a final blessing when space is cleared. A feng shui person will use sacred hand mudras and incantations specific for clearing this residual ghost energy. Good luck!

When you work with your tarot cards, it’s always best to do a formal open and close. Here’s what I do:
Light a candle. Ask for your guides to come in to help you read as well as protect you and any others present from harm.
(Your guides can include your angel, animal, ancestor guides etc. ) If you’re reading for someone else, ask permission for
their guides to help and protect all concerned as well. Do your reading as usual. When finished, do a completion/closing
by thanking all guides for their help and protection. Then blow out the candle and put away the cards. Do not leave them
casually lying around.
Best,
Katy

I am counting on “J” to let us know how her professional space clearing went. Have you ever had problems with breaking glass? Comment please, I’d like to hear from you.

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