Get ready to bring some positive changes to your home with the ancient art of Feng Shui.
By Danielle Gomes
Are you ready to freshen up your living space? Bring some positive changes to your home? Do you consider 'Spring Cleaning' an annual tradition? If so, the ancient art of Feng Shui may be just what your home needs. It may even bring a little good fortune your way.
"Feng Shui translates to the way of wind and water and stems from the Taoist belief of 'qi' (chi) – life force energy. These principles have been practiced for more than 4,000 years," says Laura Cerrano, owner of Feng Shui Manhattan. This ancient practice stems from the foundation of balancing the yin and yang and creating order from the chaos. The idea is to let the good, balanced, energy flow into your home while keeping the bad, chaotic, energy out.
"What I tell my clients, is to think of Feng Shui as a way of turning your home into a sort of very large, live-in, vision board. What I mean by that is your home is meant to be a space that inspires you. While Feng Shui is traditional, ancient art, there's a modern-day spin that aims to incorporate psychology and emotion," Cerrano says. In a chaotic world, there's nothing better than coming home to a peaceful, serene setting, and Feng Shui can help you achieve this.
The Ancient Art
This practice can be very complicated and detailed. From the Bagua map to Reiki and Dousing, some aspects of energy work require an expert. At Manhattan Feng Shui, Laura Cerrano, a certified Feng Shui consultant, brings her talent to homes from coast to coast and around the world with offices in both New York and Los Angeles. Cerrano is recognized as a Feng Shui scientific researcher, dedicated to bridging the gap between modern-day science and the ancient wisdom of Feng Shui. She works with each client to determine their individual goals, to learn their intentions, and to learn why they want to create change. "When I work with clients, I aim to assist their internal journey through external elements," Cerrano explains. Each client and each home is very different. "I explore things with clients, in particular, how their environment is mirroring their mental state and vice versa. It's not one over the other. It's how they [mental state and environment] interact with each other. They're in a constant dance. Feng Shui is not a linear practice, it's circular," Cerrano explains. In practice, as a Feng Shui expert Cerrano takes the specific layout of each client's home. She overlays this with the client's internal motivations and intentions then uses these individual components to map out the energy of your home with a Bagua map. Depending on your individual energy needs, Carrano may even use Reiki or Dousing, which are both forms of energy work, to clear the energy fields in your space. In this ever-evolving art, Cerrano helps her clients create a space that grows with them towards their goals while providing a foundation of peace.
Cerrano is a second-generation certified Feng Shui Master and a first-generation Usui Reiki Master. When her mother started practicing, she was first introduced to Feng Shui at just 12 years old. As a premier expert in the field, Cerrano has been featured in Oprah Magazine, BBC Radio, The New York Times, PBS, Bravo TV's "Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen," At Home Podcast with Linda and Drew Scott, HGTV Forever Home - Property Brothers: Season 5 - Go With The Flow, The 98.3 K-JOY Morning Show, CBC Television Documentary called "Superstitious Minds," and News China Television.
Getting Your Feet Wet
While Feng Shui is a very complicated practice, there are several easy steps that allow you to try this ancient art. "Number one – declutter – declutter – declutter," Cerrano says, "whatever you don't need, love, or use—release it. It helps you to release emotional baggage. It allows you to not be afraid of making changes. When you can release the past you are placing intention into moving forward." After you declutter, Cerrano recommends a deep clean. Then you are free to begin adding in elements like art, furniture, and decor that inspire you and create a positive energy flow. "When you walk into your house, think about how you feel and how you want to feel," Cerrano says. When determining what areas of your home to focus on first, Cerrano recommends beginning with the entryway, the kitchen, and the bedroom; and she has tips for each.
The entryway is perhaps the most important area of your home to Feng Shui. This is where good energy has the potential to flow in and bring good fortune with it.
- When you step inside of your front door if you step onto a hard floor like wood or stone, that’s yang. Add something soft, like carpet, for yin.
- Add life force energy or living elements like plants. Plants encourage growth and gentle movement. We encourage plants with soft leaves, rather than something like a cactus.
- Another go-to is to add a water element by the front door. If you add a fountain, make sure that the end flow is flowing into the home. If you can’t do water, you can add a piece of art or color. If you add art or a picture, it can include ships and boats of any kind, just make sure that they’re not docked. You want the illusion of movement into the house.
- Water and plant elements are symbolic of the breath of life flowing into the home.
- You can also add one to three bells by the front door to bring in money, luck, and abundance.
Another common area to Feng Shui is the kitchen.
- A lot of focus in Feng Shui is placed on the stove, which is representative of health and wealth.
- Make sure that the stove is clean and working.
- Make sure that you use all of the burners. This is a training ground for the mind. We tend to use the same burner every time we cook. But when we use different burners, we’re training our minds to look for different opportunities.
- Keep the refrigerator and pantry clean.
- Keep a bowl out with three, six, eight, or nine pieces of fruit in it. Oranges symbolize great fortune and apples symbolize peacefulness. But, you can use any fruit that you want. Right now I have a bowl with lemons and avocados in it.
The bedroom is another really important room to Feng Shui.
- We encourage no storage under the bed. If you need it, keep it towards the foot of the bed. Make sure that you keep nothing metal, paper, or bills under your bed. Instead store soft things under the bed like slippers, linens, and blankets.
- Use a headboard on your bed.
- Minimize the electromagnetic frequencies in the bedroom. Try to keep phones, TVs, and computers at least five to six feet away from the bed.
- Two nightstands to promote balance.
- If the bedroom is all hardwood, add a soft carpet.
- The height of the bed matters, you don’t want a bed that’s too high.
For more information, tips, and articles go to FengShuiManhattan.com to book a consultation with Laura Cerrano call 516-528-3843