2017 Yin Fire Rooster? Oh yes.

2017-year-of-the-roosterJanuary 28, 2017 marks the beginning of Chinese New Year, a two-week celebration marking the shift toward the rising energy of Spring.

The holiday falls on the second New Moon after the Winter Solstice, marking our journey back toward longer days and the shift from dormant winter to the rise of Earth’s energy.  The two-week long celebration concludes with the Full Moon on February 10.

Here in North Lake Tahoe, CA where I live, I can feel the beginning swell from deep inside the Earth rousing seeds to start the upward journey to meet the sun and longer days, even though there is nothing that even looks close to Spring. Everything here is buried under newly fallen 200+ inches of snow. [However, the skiing is the best in 20 years! I think we’ll have enough water!]

lake-tahoe-alpin

Winter is Nature’s time for going deep inside ourselves, nourishing the seeds for the new harvest and cycles of life which will bring opportunities for growth.

Last year was, for many of us, a year to focus on endings and to release what holds us down.  Perhaps you shifted ways of seeing, being and relating to claim more of your time, energy and beauty for yourself?

2017’s energy brings a year of new beginnings, one in which we are will be served especially well if we can be impeccable in our thoughts, words, actions, efforts and our spaces.

2017 is the Year of the Yin Fire Rooster.  Take the time to dive into your inner world (Yin) and keep the ember of self-love (Fire) glowing and honored;  champion (Rooster) your Heart’s Truth, be self-referential, self-reliant, and give to community.

Bring some Fire energy into your world to remind you to honor yourself, claim your worth, and share your gifts/talents.   Red, orange and even vibrant purple are colors that support us this year.

In the outside world, Fire enlightens and also burns away the unnecessary dross, exposing what has lain hidden.  Rooster crows, so be alert to ways you can gently speak your truth and be known for the gifts you posses and can bring to your world.

Your spaces:

  • You can still purge what doesn’t serve you, clean and organize everything in your world, touch it all with love.
  • Introduce delightful sound via uplifting music, chimes, laughter, or even flowing water.  Change your spaces to reflect who you really are.
  • Honor all your entrances and the area of your rooms and home, offices and buildings associated
  • Clean the areas associated with your Reputation and Fame: the furthest most middle third.  Be sure it’s bright and represents what you want to be known for.
  • Look at the artwork around you:  what does it represent?  what does it say to you?
  • What are the colors you are living with?  The grey tones that have been trending for so long are now giving way to softer, warmer grey/beige tones, lighter walls and white kitchens are attractive to us.  Creation of a color scheme that is current, relevant AND supports your energy and purpose takes a little time but is well worth the effort.  Contact me if you’d like your personal color palette for your home or office.

Feng Shui Time and Space

Nine Star Ki is the Japanese system of relating time to our spaces and our bodies…everything is interconnected.

According to Nine Star Ki, the energy influence of this year in general

  • Will support us to look deeply into our own inner well for inspiration.
  • We are cautioned in our communication — it may sound like we are talking “under water” translate: clarify and ask those to whom you are speaking to “mirror” back what you have said.  That little trick can save you countless irritation and miscommunication.
  • Give us the opportunity to slow down, look inside for the answers and then gently bring them forth to our own world.

Each of us will feel the influence of the 1 Water year, and each of us has 3 other influences according to Nine Star Ki.  Click here to get your Feng Shui Energy makeup.  The information is uncanny; I use this in my consultations and it helps me help others change their lives, relationships and office dynamics.  (The site is in its infancy, if you’d like to know more information, contact me.

If you’d like to know what Nine Star Ki says about your year ahead just send me an email.  If you’d like to know which colors, designs and shapes support you and your relationships, or if you’d like assistance with design or Feng Shui, be sure to contact me.

Reading the energy of your spaces is just like wind-surfing, we have to learn the skill and then we can learn how to navigate the ever-changing energies around us, we can avoid the pitfalls/rocks and sail ourselves toward clear waters.

Much love,

fawn-sig

Fawn

 

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Multitasking: What you NEED to know

 

Multi-tasking:  What you NEED to know.

Have you ever been around a little child who is engaged in what they are doing? Their focus is laser-like. Our society trains that out of us so it’s up to us to put it back.

 “Unfortunately, the human mind cannot, in fact, multi-task without drastically reducing the quality of our processing.  Brain activation for listening is cut in half if the person is trying to process visual input at the same time. A recent study at The British Institute of Psychiatry showed that checking your email while performing another creative task decreases your IQ in the moment 10 points. That is the equivalent of not sleeping for 36 hours-more than twice the impact of smoking marijuana.”

The above quote was excerpted  from a beautiful blog article by Timothy Ferriss, best-selling author of The 4-hour Work Week.  

I recommend this article:  It’s a surprise and very well written:

The Multitasking Virus and the End of Learning (part 1)

To get the most out of your day and life, learn how to manage yourself and learn about multitasking and time management fallacies, watch this great free video .  It’s just plane good advice about how to be successful in life.  Wake Up Productive

 

Quick start: You’ll need a routine that works for you daily:  one you can do every day to create the persistence needed to build a great life.  Here are some suggestions from the video, but it is really worth watching.

1.  Clean Focus spans of 90-180 uninterrupted minutes.  Eliminate interruptions: clutter, email, distractions, interrupting others-focus only on the task at hand.
2.  Pulse:  focus and then relax.  Based on our bodies’ ultradium rhythm our natural cycle is a rhythm that occurs every two hours.  (This is the basis of Traditional Chinese Medicine’s transition of energy from organ system to organ system.  Every two hours is associate with vital energy nourishing a particular ‘organ system’ of the body.)   The ability to have clean focus requires clean breaks:  drop it, go outside, don’t think about it and then return refreshed.
3.  Create Routines.  We are creatures of routine.  Create ones that strengthen you:  In particular:  how you start your day sets the tone.  Get up, have a big drink of fresh water (add some lemon is you can), exercise (for a fresh mind and freed emotional body), sit in silence for 5-20 minutes, eat a healthy breakfast, read something renewing and you’ll be excited to live your best life.
4.  Renew yourself.  Take time off, at least 1-2 days a week and at least 1-2 weeks a quarter.  You’ll be more productive, create more value in your life and more value for those around you.  And for your sake, get enough sleep.  (Read my article about how lack of sleep will ruin your life.)

 
You need a home that supports your routine and rituals for your day. 

 
If your home and office do not create a background for your life that is supportive, you need to revise and use Feng Shui to help it–and you–flow better.   

 

Where to start? 

Watch yourself throughout your day, honestly.  Where are you duplicating effort?  Where are your energy and flow “speedbumps?”  (Those things that slow you down or muddy your tasks.)   Are you spending time looking for things, repeating motions, walking out of the way to get from one place to another? Does your home support your routines?  Does the design and layout of your home and it’s furnishings make it easy to stay organized, feel focused, happy and engaged in your activities?  

Check out the Clear Your Clutter Weekly Plan to begin to look at yourself and your spaces differently.  Go to my website and sign up for the plan.  Then you can call me, we can start where you are and get you a plan that will work for you, your time and your budgets (emotional, physical and financial). 

 Let me know what you think.

 

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How To Buy a Happy Home – The Secret To Avoid Trouble

The Secret to Buying a Happy Home

-or- How to avoid a divorce, illness, job loss, or worse..

 

When you buy a home, what you are buying is the next phase of your life.  By the end of this article, you’ll know some major things to look for.

Why would you want to imagine what it’s like to live in their shoes?

If you buy their home, you will begin to live the same life.  If it’s a wonderful life, buy now.   But unless you use “Feng Shui eyes” you could be in for an unexpected turn of events.  In my experience, homes don’t lie.  Rarely is a home so toxic it can’t be solved, but it does happen.  Most often, the energy can be adjusted but if you don’t know the difference–you’ll be in for trouble.

Things that matter when buying a home:

  • The Outside: Neighborhood, Land, Style & Layout
  • The Inside: Style, Layout, Colors, Shapes & Items
  • The History

Feng Shui wisdom can save you a trip to the divorce attorney or worse.  If you find a home that you love and that home has some challenging Feng Shui issues, you can usually reverse the negatives by making some changes that won’t cost a fortune:  that’s the beauty of the science of Feng Shui. 

The Outside – The Neighborhood
     determines your ability to be effective in the world

 

1.    A healthy and vibrant neighborhood:  good life force means you won’t be drained or asked to devote YOUR energy to keep it vital.  It will support you rather than drain you.

2.    A healthy business district, health trees, well-maintained homes, gardens and streets.

3.    Not directly near a cemetery, hospital or church –while these are important aspects of a community, living too near these can deplete your own health.  Avoid living near a prison or municipal buildings such as Fire Station, Police Station or water treatment plant.

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Great New Product — Do You Care About the Color?

formcard-com-screenshotDesign and color aren’t separate.

We are attracted by the next new “thing” and then make instant, often subconscious judgments about the product many of which are based on color: what to do with it, how it will perform, if we want to take the next step to investigate or even purchase it.

If you watch the video for Formcard, notice your response to the color as it is used.  This is not meant to be a spoiler by any means, I think the product is fun and useful…it kind of reminds me of Gumby and Pokey, but maybe that’s the joy of it along with the McGyver factor.  The saturated, “happy” colors add to this whimsy.

Notice your response and you’ll begin to understand the power of color in your own life and purchases:

Do you wish the color were different when used as a stand for the mobile phone?  Do you like the spunkiness of the product, and do the colors add to that for you?  Does it matter that the yellow Formcard is used as a repair for a tent pole?  Is the marketer using the color to draw your attention to the product and its capacity to offer quick repair? (If you have set up a tent in the wilderness, you know that you probably don’t have a glass of boiling water just sitting around–but the concept is exciting–quick repair!)  Will anyone use the yellow Formcard to draw attention to the repair, or will it be attractive to bees and you won’t know why?

Would you buy more of this product if it came in colors that were more like the items in your life already?

All of those questions above are secondary to my excitement about the product itself.  If you try it, let me know how you like it … and the colors!

 

 

 

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Healing Advances in Light and Color

2015 was declared “International Year of Light and Light-based technologies” for a good reason.

Light, which in its visible wavelengths we call color, has immediate and deterministic impact on our lives, our circadian rhythm, our moods and behavior.

Beyond light therapy, there is a growing trend aimed at addressing how our bodies metabolize light for health and well-being and development of every-day products that will foster environmental comfort.

Spectral-Light_designboom_002 Philippe Rahm

Philippe Rahm’s Spectral Light for Artemide          Image Courtesy of Artemide and DesignBoom.com

The most recent issue of Azure Magazine (one of my favorites) carries six significant articles about advances in lighting products and designs being which further foster health and well-being, for the planet, humans and animals.

You might imagine that my favorite of these articles is entitled, Natural Rhythms.  Addressing the harsh effects of “bad lighting” — something we may not consider adversely affecting our ability to stay focused at work and healthy in life–Oivind Slaavato took to designing a better light fixture.  After suffering a concussion, Oivind Slaavato, was unable to cope with bright light becoming physically ill when exposed to what he calls “bad light.”

Using sacred geometry of the Fibonacci series, this pendant not only shields the body from harsh effects of light but adds a beneficial and therapeutic effect.  The fixture will be produced by the Danish brand Louis Poulsen.  Read the digital article here.

Other products:

  1. The Drift Light, a low-blue bulb designed to dim at the same pace as the setting sun, allowing the body and mind to gradually relax, found at drift-light.com.
  2. Called the “Life Enhancer of the Year” this table-top lamp helps to balance circadian rhythms which are vital to health. Changing from energizing blue in the morning to calming amber in the evening, this light can be found at elenoredelisse.com
  3. Studiotoer.com has designed a wall sconce that acts like a clock, thereby connecting us to the sun’s movement and re-calibrating our body’s internal clock.

See the lights and decide for yourself here.

Full-Spectrum Lighting

Philippe Rahm, Swiss architect and installationist who has designed a series of spectrum specific lights.

Rahm designed a pendant of 36 LED bulbs each emitting it a single wavelength which then come together at the light’s core combine to create a rich white light.

By offering the specific spectra that interact with the human body, according to Elizabeth Pagliocolo, author of the Azure Magazine article: Spectral Light, “The portion of LEDs selected for humans mixes specific wavelengths in green, yellow and ample blue, which blocks our pineal gland from secreting melatonin to keep us alert through the day and ward off SAD.  The rest are combined to benefit pets and plants.”

More information about Philippe’s light for Artemide can be found at DesignBoom.com, another “don’t miss”  online magazine that I love.

Other articles of note in this recent edition of Azure include:  Turn Down the Volume, (p. 58) which features acoustical light fixtures that  absorb sound, Come Together, (p. 60) introduces Ommatidium, a street light in London that acts as an internet hub and makes the streets lighter and safer, Q&A with Lee Broom (p.62) the British lighting designer talks lighting design trends: contemporary inspired by traditional, and Special Effects (p.64) cutting-edge design trends that will influence our lighting designs in the future.

 

 

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Quick Holiday Feng Shui

 

SantaLetterQuick Tips for A Delightful Holiday

What’s on YOUR list?

If you find that you are harried and hurried and not enjoying those feelings (sometimes being frantic it is a LOT of fun), this list will give you a few ideas to add some time and delete some scattered-ness from your life.

  • “Pre-PROGRAM” EACH DAY:  At the beginning of the day (or any event) see it going smoothly and effortlessly.  When you re-script your day and see things working out the way you’d like them to, you begin to draw to you the things that you need.  It seems magical, but “Any sufficiently advanced technology is usually indistinguishable from magic.” (Arthur C. Clarke)   Write the script for your day, see yourself beautiful, happy, easily accepted and hold the feelings.  You will be amazed.  For more on that, see my post about Intentional Feng Shui; it works!
  • PRIORITIZE Everything according to your heart:  When considering Holiday events and activities but them through the test:  Which ones bring you most joy?  Most Peace?  Most return on your time and energy investment?  Saying “NO” to things is not going away from those you love or respect, it is an act of personal power.  Give yourself a day to respond to invitations and then be true to you and what you value most.  You’ll have much more to give when you are fully centered, poised and present.  You will be giving yourself and the world a precious gift…You.
  • OUTSOURCE:  Your most precious resource is your time and feeling nature.  When you actually look at the amount of time you spend on a task, you may be surprised that your hourly rate might be less than minimum wage.  Decide what you really, really love to do, do that and delegate…once and for all and let it go.  You might be surprised how well things actually do go.  (I let Whole Foods cook my Thanksgiving Dinner and it was fantastic; I got to cook just the dishes we really love and enjoy my family all day long.).
  • GIVE LOVED ONES FUN JOBS:  A young mother at Starbucks was making my coffee and mentioned how frustrated she was with her young children bickering and fighting.  I told her they needed jobs to help direct all that extra energy and excitement.  She said, “I tell them to clean their rooms and do their chores,” and I interrupted:  “those aren’t fun jobs”…Here are some fun jobs to give kids and family members a sense of your joy in making this time of your special:  1) Ask them to decide how they want to decorate their rooms by drawing a picture of it for you.  (spends time drawing and gets them excited)…then tell them they’ll have to clean it up before they decorate so it looks just perfect!  2) Put out a few crayons and papers and ask them to draw their Santa’s list.  3) Engage them in your tasks:  ask them to make suggestions for the menu on Christmas Eve, or how they’d decorate, or whom they’d seat next to whom at Christmas Dinner, have them make place cards and see what happens–don’t forget to wink at them.  4) Ask them to put all the Christmas books and movies together in one place.  5) Ask them to go through their toy collection and put in a laundry basket everything that they don’t use so that they can donate it to charity.  6) Ask them to place all broken or parts of toys in a special box to make room for what Santa will bring them.   Kids (and adults) just want to be useful and kids’ currency is attention, they’ll do just about anything for attention–good or bad.  When they think they are contributing and getting your attention for helpful things they do, you’ll discover a side to Christmas you always knew would be there
  • KEEP LUXURY TIME AND FUN ON YOUR PRIORITY LIST:  Every day schedule and do something that will enliven your Spirit.  (after all, it’s not called the “Rat Race of Christmas”…).   A warm cup of your favorite tea, a nap, saying NO to that extra load of laundry, looking for the morning star, smiling at yourself in the mirror.  Schedule some corn-y old fun: I guarantee you you’ll have memories that make you smile.
  • FENG SHUI TIPS:
    ~ Keep the knives out of sight and remove the carving knives from dinner table; this will help keep arguments to a minimum.
    ~ A round or oval dining table gives the best energy for an enjoyable dinner.
    ~ Add something yellow or golden to the center of the table, place a beautiful saying underneath each chair (“I am healthy and happy, safe and loved.”)
    ~ Limit the amount of red this holiday, focus on softness and gentle peace.  ~ Focus on you, your own place in the world and stepping up to be the best version of you.  There’s a lot of extra emotional fire energy flying around, opt for soft gold, glowing blues or rich greens.
    ~  Allow for breathing room:  out with the old, in with the new (or newly loved and re-freshened).  When adding your decor or any gifts, remove whatever else you can.  Patty Kraemer, of Kraemer Connect suggests:  “one thing in, and two things out!”  Clear all last year’s clutter, donate all you can’t or don’t use, leave some things empty and open.  This will bring freshness and more light into your entertaining.
  • WRITE YOUR WISH LIST:  Just because we are ‘grown-ups’ doesn’t mean the magic of Santa isn’t really there.  The metaphor of Santa is even more powerful as we understand that we always get what we are asking for.  There is no degree of difficulty for the Universal Life Force:  it can create a person as easily as a mountain, a planet and a Universe, so get on it and ask.  Make your list of what you want and put it away until next year…then check off all that you got!  It can be things, events, feelings, anything!    Be honest, don’t edit it, just ask! What would I love to do next year? What do you want to say at the end of  next year about how 2011 went for you?  What’s on your list?

You are the expert in your life:  did you have fun?

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Doors — Make us Forgetful? Push Away or Invite Vitality and Opportunity?

A welcoming and open doorway, this home could use a little protection from additional landscaping and a bit more color to attract attention.

A welcoming and open doorway, this home could use a little protection from additional landscaping and a bit more color to attract attention.  Photo courtesy of Houzz.com

It seems that the whole world is beginning to understand the impact doors have on our lives.

Published in the Quarterly  Journal of Experimental Psychology in 2011, performed by Gabriel Radvansky and her team at Notre Dame look at the ‘event model’ for forgetting things as we pass through doorways.   Susan Gilbert of Notre Dame explains:

“We’ve all experienced it: The frustration of entering a room and forgetting what we were going to do. Or get. Or find.

New research from University of Notre Dame Psychology Professor Gabriel Radvansky suggests that passing through doorways is the cause of these memory lapses.

“Entering or exiting through a doorway serves as an ‘event boundary’ in the mind, which separates episodes of activity and files them away,” Radvansky explains.  (Read more here)

Doors, doors, doors  (and not “The Doors”)

Everything is relative in Feng Shui.  Not only are the forms and colors we live with important, they define our experience in a deeper way than we thought possible–unless you’ve studied or paid mind to Feng Shui’s thousands’ year old wisdom (oh THAT old line again?  sorry).

Doors do create event boundaries, as above; part of the reason why the bagua map is relative to each room individually, why more than one door in a room creates a particular energy flow, and why doors are so vitally important to address the doors in your life, energy which leads you to your Life Purpose, your journey and career and why it’s only one part of the entire picture, but an important one.

PS As I am writing this, on the radio is the tune:  “Let my love open the door…to your heart.”  Awesome.  

Here are a few things to think about when making friends with your doors:

  • According to Feng Shui, Doors open us to opportunity.  Our front door is the Mouth of Ch’i which brings fresh Life Force into our homes and our lives.  Really look at the entrance to your home.  Is it obvious, beautiful and well cared for?  Stand at your doors, inside and outside and look around:  what do you see?
  • Are your doors beautiful? Do they look inviting and work perfectly? They can send off fresh life or invite all our goodness to find us. Here’s how Feng Shui looks at doors and what to do to make yours work FOR you.
  • If you see a beautiful view, if your eye is led around to entrancing views, you are on the right track! If not, clear anything that is clutter and anything that takes your energy down.  What we see speaks a language of metaphor to our subconscious, as well as the language of energy and emotion.
  • Doors directly across from each other ‘steal’ energy.  If your neighbor’s front door or garage is across from your front door, you are losing energy and life force.  Place some landscaping between your door and the other or at the very least, if you can, hang a bagua mirror above your front door.  If you cannot do that, place a wreathe on your front door and place a small round mirror facing toward the offending door.  Other options apply, if you have questions, just email me.
  • A home or door that is hard to find, a walkway that is in disrepair or overgrown by plants, hidden street number or not-well-lighted doorway all signal that we are unavailable for the goodness in our lives.
  • Make sure it’s well lighted, that your handle, hinges and your doorbell work perfectly.  If not, put this on the list for you handy person or whoever handles your ‘honey do’ list.  Even make sure your garage door works perfectly, the light works, the remote works, etc. and everything is easy and welcomes you home beautifully.
  • If you have cats, think about installing a cat door on a closet door to allow the kitties to have access to their litter but keep it out of sight.

Feng Shui TIP:  Your main entrance is vitally important in your ability to live the work that feels like play to you.  Not your daily entrance but the front door that the post office tags your address to.  If you don’t use your front door daily, it is equivalent to covering your mouth and trying to live your fullest. Your front door is known as the Mouth of Ch’i…if you are not using it daily, you are not getting your full breath of fresh air and opportunity. 

 Open your front door daily, welcome the new, and use it often! The Life Force doesn’t listen to ‘Reason’ or excuses, so invite it in with positive arrangement of your entrance, make sure the doors open completely and onto a beautiful view.  Have you tried to have a conversation with a storm lately? It’s an advanced move.

For today, make sure your doors open completely, with nothing blocking them.  Note which doors need to be repaired, which ones might need to have a spring-hinge that will keep them closed, like bathroom doors, especially ones that open onto the foyer or other rooms like a bedroom.    Clear the space behind and around your doors.   Remove items from the stairs and be sure your walkways and hallways are open and clear.

Everything matters, so also, make sure your car doors work perfectly.  Hit the hinges with a little WD-40, wipe the door frame and clean the door itself.  You’ll be so amazed at the difference it makes, all around!

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