Preparing for and enjoying the holidays!
by Peg Ganey, FSIM Board Member
SET AN INTENTION:
Imagine your ideal circumstances and work towards them. In your minds eye, what happens? Think about what you'd like to create and it will help guide you as you're catapulted though some potentially crazy and stressful times!
Engage in maintaining balance through the holidays by saying to yourself and others "I want simplicity this year and I'm going to make it real"!
HERE ARE SOME TIPS AS YOU PREPARE FOR THE HOLIDAYS:
* Declutter. Find a place for everything and everything in it's place!
* Make room in your space for the holidays: Clean out the fridge, pantry and coat closet in preparation for entertaining. This is a perfect opportunity to take canned goods to the Food Bank. Check to see if you have everything on hand to make the holiday treats your family loves. Donate old coats to make room in your closet to hang your guests’ coats.
* Involve the kids. Do they want a new doll or truck? See if it’s time to give away a toy before a new one arrives.
* Get out your holiday items and take the opportunity to evaluate if each item is actually being used or still important to you, or if you could donate it to a charity?
* Live with what you love and get rid of the rest! Look at the decorations you’re putting up and decide if you love it; if not, let it go! It’s ok to get rid of the reindeer cookie jar you never liked!
* Make room for your decorations and Christmas tree before you start unpacking your ornament boxes. You may have to store some of your regular decorations away to avoid overcrowding your home with objects. Why layer on your holiday décor when you can make it the focal point?
* If you’re using decorations from years past maybe it’s time to change them. Dried florals and imitation plants lose their Ch’i (or good energy) after a number of years. If you must use them, make sure they're dust free and not faded.
* Morning house routine: clean something or straighten up something rather than read the paper or drink your coffee while you do so.
* Clear the entrance hallway. Feng shui promotes the belief that golden opportunities come through your front door, so clear the pathway leading to it.
* Make sure nothing is pointing toward incoming guests like spiky plants
* Maximize the sparkle. Crystals spread energy through space, so create a sparking feel by cleaning all your crystal, including any chandeliers.
* Eat at a round or oval table for a friendlier feeling.
* Have a round centerpiece on a square table or a square centerpiece on a round table.
* If you do have a rectangular dining table, make sure your guests are not seated too close to the corners, which can cause a feeling of unease during the meal.
* Square tables could be on a round rug.
* Decorate with green or gold at the table.
* Thanksgiving colors are traditionally the earth element colors of orange, brown and gold. Earth element is a grounded, stable energy. Green is wood element which has a flexible energy and good for conversation. Red tends to enliven and animate energy. The shapes of these two elements are also widely used in the Thanksgiving good feng shui home decor: the grounding, stable and solid square shape of the earth feng shui element and the triangular shape of the fire element.
* Candles as the fire element and a variety of earthenware containers as earth element are also very popular items with excellent Feng Shui energy for the Thanksgiving celebration.
* Low centerpieces encourage communication, not staring through fire.
* Place vocal or argumentative people with their backs to the door and soft spoken people facing the door.
* Group dinners can get manic....prepare ahead of time to drop conversation into more meaning. One at a time lets see what each is grateful for. What is one of the most meaningful or happiest experiences you’ve had since last year? What are you looking forward to doing in the future?
* Shared feast: everyone bring their favorite dish.
* Step outside and walk up to your own steps and front door, pretend you're there for the very first time. First, is the pathway safe? Good Feng Shui means a safe sidewalk and steps. We do the Minnesota shuffle here. No ice should be present.
* Red is a good color for front door decor and holiday greeter pots and it’s great feng shui for calling good energy into your home! Plus it’s festive!
* Wind Chimes call in good energy. The perfect place for a wind chime or plant is by your front door. This is where gusts of energy enter your home. A wind chime or plant will slow the energy down as it enters and create a harmonious home. Be sure to choose a sound that is pleasing to you.
* Is your entrance area welcoming, spacious, neat and uncluttered? Can your guests feel the holiday atmosphere upon entering your house?
* Add a couple of Christmas ornaments in the entrance area, and set the mood with enticing aromas. A saucepan filled with orange peels, cinnamon sticks and cloves that you keep on low heat will fill your home with a warm glow.
* Be careful not to create an over-stimulating environment with too many different colors and lights.
* There are places and times when you may want to create a lot of energy, and that's where you can mass those bright holiday decorations.
* Your choice and placement of decorations is crucial to the atmosphere of your home and to the harmony of those who enter. As mentioned above, too many bright colors can create an overly-stimulating environment and increase the risk of tension. Yet not enough holiday items will result in a "dull atmosphere".
* In small rooms add decorations that have a matte finish, rather than lots of reflective surfaces, to help absorb excess energy. The flowing shapes of ribbons and fabrics also help create a soft, gentle atmosphere.
COLORS FOR THE HOLIDAYS AND FENG SHUI
Fire element: Red is energetic, firey; conical, pyramidal and star shapes. Liven it up with red or variation thereof: purple, and pinks for romantic looks.
Metal element: Silver and gold, white, light gray, round shape: serene and mental.
Wood element: Natural elements, plants, blues and greens.
Water element: Crystal, mirrors, black or navy blue, undulating shapes.
Earth element: Pottery, ceramics, square or rectangular shapes, browns, golds, yellows.
DECORATING FOR THE SENSES AND FENG SHUI
Fire element through candlelight or lowlight keying everyone down.
Wood element with greenery: plants, living tree also represents earth.
Earth element predominant for people to relax. Taste is earth element.
Metal element: white or metal or stone for candleholders. Smell is the metal element.
Water comes in through crystal and glass or the sense of sound: classical, nature sounds, something peaceful for dinners. Pandora on computer or soundscapes on the tv.
Feng Shui can enhance a whole array of areas in our lives. By surrounding yourself with things and people you truly love, and following some basic tenets, you can create harmony balance and relaxation, which will carry you through the holidays an into new year.
I encourage you to set your intentions today! Focus on simplicity, serenity and creating sacred spaces with those you love!
Peg Ganey is a Certified Feng Shui Professional since 2010 and received her training through the Western School of Feng Shui.