By Amanda Haase
In the midst of a global pandemic where we’re required to stay inside our homes, different phases of this “quarantine life” are only natural. We’ve seen the eat-your-way-through-the-pantry phase (we’re all guilty), the clean-and-organize-your-home-twice-per-day phase, the interesting-feeling-of-coming-to-terms-with-this-new-way-of-life phase, and now my personal favorite: the rearranging-all-your-furniture phase. Not to worry — we’ve all hit that point (or soon will), so why not rearrange with intention? You don’t have to be a feng shui expert — I’m certainly not, but I’m definitely an aficionado — to understand the basics and ensure optimal vibes throughout your house.
Feng shui is an ancient Eastern philosophy that seeks to reflect balance and vitality in the home and living space. It focuses on how energy moves through the home and all aspects of life such as health, wealth, family, career, and more. Knowing a few basic feng shui staples will help you understand the practice at a beginner’s level to promote the overall well-being of your home.
1. Doors Direct the Energy
In feng shui, it is said that doors control the flow of energy through your home — and your life. You want to make sure that doorways are free of clutter and mess, and try to reduce any nearby obstacles and objects such as tables, decor, and furniture. Keep all entryways as open and clean as possible to let that energy flow!
2. Mirrors Maximize Space
Whether you’re creating the most possible space in a small apartment or optimizing the vibes in a hallway or staircase, mirrors will create the appearance of a larger area as well as circulating, reflecting, and deflecting energy throughout the home. Ideal places for mirrors are above the fireplace, mounted in the dining room, and floor-length mirrors in the bedroom. Just be sure your mirror is not facing the bed — that’s a big feng shui no-no.
3. Commanding Positions are Key
One of the top rules in traditional feng shui practice is to ensure that all rooms are organized in such a way that they assume a “commanding position” from the doorway of that room. This means that, ideally, all furniture where a person would sit or lay should be on the opposite side of the room and directly facing the door — you do not ever want your back to an entryway. For example, in a home office the desk and chair should be facing the door head-on, and in a baby nursery the crib should face the door on the opposite side of the room.
4. Plants Produce Life Force
Indoor plants contribute to the health of a home in multiple ways, including air purification, mood-boosting benefits, and increasing humidity and oxygen. In feng shui, plants not only offer all of these benefits and more, but they also provide what is referred to in Chinese medicine as “life force” — or vitality. It is believed that flora connects us to nature and increases the vibrancy of the home on a holistic level. The more the merrier when it comes to greenery!
5. Color Me Happy
The use of certain colors is one of the easiest ways to shift and optimize the energy in your home without moving a single piece of furniture. Feng shui uses colors as they relate to the five elements — green for earth, blue for water, brown for wood, and so forth. Understanding how the elements and their colors translate to various benefits will help enhance the energy of each room in your home.
6. Lean on Celebrity Inspo
When all else fails and you don’t know where to start, look to the pros — like the home makeover master from Netflix’s Queer Eye, Bobby Berk — to kickstart your creative juices and channel your inner interior designer. An interior designer is inside you somewhere! Bobby’s Instagram page is loaded with feng shui-approved layouts from the living room to the lounge to give you ideas and inspiration for every corner of your house.
With this advice, go confidently into your furniture-rearranging stage of quarantine — you may reap the benefits of a higher-vibe home as a result! Visit our blog for more fun tips and tricks on navigating lockdown life and social media best practices, and be sure to follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to keep up with the latest social media trends.
Community Manager Amanda Dunlap is an Eastern philosophy enthusiast and recommends these reads for a deep dive into the subject of feng shui: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Taoism: An Essential Guide, and The Holistic Home: Feng Shui for Mind, Body, Spirit, Space.