Feng Shui – which means ‘wind water’ in Chinese – is the ancient Chinese art of creating a harmonious physical environment, which can be anything from a single room to an entire building or garden. One of the most important features of Feng Shui is that everything is connected by energy, meaning that your feelings and emotions are influenced by your physical environment and surroundings. Most of us practice the basic ideas of Feng Shui on an everyday basis without even being aware of it – when applied to your home it is the art of placing furniture, pictures, ornaments and lighting fixtures so that they best create a pleasant environment.
The principles of Feng Shui are particularly important in the bedroom as it’s a room that most of us spend more time in than any other – about a third of our lives in. And to most of us, the bedroom is also a room where we can hopefully escape from work, noisy children and the stresses of everyday life. A bedroom should be a room that is conducive to a good nights sleep, relaxation and perhaps romance. A dark, untidy and unwelcoming bedroom can create feelings of lethargy and depression, especially when you are asleep but your mind is still active.
Before you even enter the bedroom itself, the doorway is important in Feng Shui. It is good to have a door that opens at least 90 degrees; anything less than this is considered restrictive and symbolically may prevent good luck or good opportunities from entering your life. Practitioners of Feng Shui also suggest a device known as a ‘greeter’ in your bedroom. This is the first thing you see when you enter the bedroom, or the focal point of the room – it could be anything from a large painting, photograph, fireplace or striking piece of furniture. As far as the decoration of your bedroom goes, try to avoid stimulating colors like red and gold on the walls – instead, use relaxing colors such as pastel blue, green or yellow.
The position of the bed itself is extremely important in creating a peaceful and uncluttered environment for your bedroom. Most people instinctively know where to place their bed, taking into account the size and shape of the room, window and door placement, other furniture, overhead lighting, etc. These are the basics of Feng Shui – again, you probably practice the ideas without even realizing it. Feng Shui practitioners also claim you are in the ‘command position’, meaning a feeling of confidence and power if you are able to see your bedroom door when you wake in the morning. However, it is not considered good to have your feet in direct alignment with the bedroom door – the ancient Chinese considered this the ‘death position’. If you have an adjoining bathroom opening onto your bedroom, keep the bathroom door closed so nothing can subconsciously disturb your sleep.
The placement of other furniture is important too – to avoid a ‘jarring’ effect, or in Feng Shui tradition, a symbolic poison arrow pointing at you – try to avoid having a sharp corner facing your bed. Mirrors should not be placed at the foot of the bed, rather to the side of the bed or at an angle. Try to not place your bed under an exposed beam – this is considered a symbol of oppression and will subconsciously counter any feelings of peace or harmony your bedroom gives you.
With Feng Shui it is important to eliminate clutter in your bedroom, which attracts negative energy and can prevent you from having a good night’s sleep. Try not to have work-related items in your bedroom such as books, papers and a computer. Your mind may dwell on work and associated stress even when you are sleep. Don’t store junk and odds and ends under your bed, and if you have a bed with drawers in it, keep only clean clothes or sheets in the drawers. Clutter on top of dressers and a wardrobe tends to subconsciously obstruct your ability to think clearly and in an organized manner, and if you see the clutter when you wake first thing in the morning, you may feel lethargic or sluggish without realizing why. Try not to have too much electronic equipment and wires trailing about; and avoid having too many plants or flowers in your room. If your bedroom still feels cluttered or overcrowded, try to create a corner of the room that is private, to relax in, even if it’s just a chair in a corner.
If you are working to eliminate the clutter, it’s a good opportunity to sort through the clothes in your closet as well. Most of us wear just 20 percent of our clothes 80 percent of the time and Feng Shui experts say that if you haven’t worn it in over a year – get rid of it. Clothes that you never wear apparently attract negative energy – and there is no doubt that the act of throwing away things you don’t need will make you feel good about yourself. Practitioners of Feng Shui also suggest regularly altering the location of pictures, ornaments, etc to create new energy and ensure a feeling of well-being that’s associated with the change.
If you want your bedroom to be a place for romance, Feng Shui has some tips for you too. Apart from the usual romantic symbols such as hearts and flowers, try placing pairs of objects in your bedroom. Apparently, this will increase your chances of a fulfilling romantic encounter!