In my private member group, Align, we've been discussing how to best lay out your bedroom for restful sleep using Feng Shui design principles.
To help maximize the benefits of your room layout, consider these great things for your bedroom to level up the comfort and calming energy in your space. Here are some fantastic products that I love to use to upgrade a bedroom.
Essential Oil Diffuser
Your sense of smell is powerful, and diffusing a little lavender before bedtime can help you relax and prepare your body for rest. I like this diffuser from SpaRoom. It's a great size for a bedroom and even displays pretty colors.
Himalayan Salt Lamp
Salt lamps provide a pretty glow while cleansing the air and increasing negative ions in your space to offer a relaxing atmosphere. I have mine on a timer to come on for a few hours before bedtime.
Using a weighted blanket is like getting a big hug! These organic cotton-weighted blankets from Saatva are my favorite.
When spending 6-8 hours in a room, it's important to have clean air to breathe. This brand of purifier comes highly recommended and is quiet as to not disrupt your sleep.
Wake Up Light
I've shared how this little light/alarm clock completely transformed my mornings (read post here), so I had to put it on this list! If your alarm clock is too jarring in the morning, I recommend you invest in this fantastic light!
These are five of my favorite items to use and recommend to clients! I know you'll love them too.
Sleep well friends!
*I do not receive any type of commission or payouts from the companies above. I personally like them and recommend them.
I often speak about the five elements of Feng Shui and balancing them in the home. During these beautiful summer months, we use and enjoy our outdoor spaces, patios, and porches much more. Remember, it's just as important to represent each of the five elements in your exterior spaces!
Below are some ideas of how you can bring each of the five elements into your outdoor spaces:
This element seems effortless, as you likely already have plants outside. In addition to any landscaping, it's never a bad idea to bring in more flowerpots and planters! Like indoor plants, if a plant begins to die, make sure to remove it. Try creating additional wood elements by using wood for any structures, columns, or posts, and know that vertical striped furniture cushions introduce the wood element, too!
The bright sun brings the fire element to your outdoor spaces, but introduce more with firepits, an outdoor fireplace, exterior lighting, candles, and red decor. Try red flowers in your beds or pots - I particularly love red geraniums on my porch!
It's probably no surprise that earth tones such as beige, tan, or brown will introduce the earth element into your space. Natural objects like rocks, crystals, brick, sand, and even terra cotta pots will do the trick! Find a square or rectangular table for your deck or patio to bring in this grounding energy!
To introduce the metal element outside, use commonly found metal patio furniture or the colors gray and white through flowerpots and furniture cushions. Metal wind chimes are also an excellent option to add some metal, and the beautiful sound is a great bonus! I recently added some pretty white sheer drapery panels to a client's porch for some privacy, and they were fantastic!
Aside from actual water such as a pool, hot tub, or a water feature/fountain, decorative items in blue or black are great to introduce the water element. Black planters and glass dining or side tables are a great start! Keep an eye out for decor with wavy, watery patterns, too. Add a wavy sidewalk or pathway if you're creating your outdoor space from scratch.
Hopefully you're more inspired than ever to update or rearrange your outdoor area. Balance those elements for an amazing outdoor experience! Need help? Go here to learn about my consultations or to schedule one!
Many people deal with anxiety every day, which can impact your day-to-day life. If anxiety or anxious thoughts are something you deal with and try to manage, look at your surroundings. When it comes to our own homes, we are experiencing everything from the flooring to sofa material, and even photos on the wall as part of our day-to-day lives even though we might not realize it. It's important to know that what occupies our space influences how we feel! Next time you're feeling antsy or anxious, consider the following things, make adjustments, and see if you can feel a difference.
Style – Our style and the way we live in our space shift over time. Ultra-modern décor taste might shift over the years as life changes. A preference for clean lines might change when you take up antiquing and add to your collection.
Sound – Turn off the phone and tv and tune in to any sounds you hear when it's "quiet." What do you notice? I had a client who was dealing with stress and needed some guidance. When I visited her home, there was a lot of noise from a busy road nearby, with vehicles constantly passing by. While she didn’t realize it, her reaction was visible every time a car passed. By implementing sound-absorbing draperies, adding throws on the sofa, and bringing in rugs on the floor, we could soften the sounds. It was amazing to hear the noise difference that the added textures and white noise machine could accomplish!
Color – Think about the colors that make you feel good. If you don't love warm tones, having too many warm colors in your space will make you feel uncomfortable, triggering anxious feelings. Did you know that viewing the color red can raise your blood pressure? If you love the color red, know that an excess of red and fuchsia colors in your space brings in the fire element of Feng Shui and may trigger anxiety. I recommend these bold, warm colors for functional areas such as a family game room or a gym space. Always opt for balance but ensure you use the colors that make you happy!
Materials/Texture – Various textures, from small woven fabrics to big chunky throws, are perfect for giving your space a cozy, comfortable vibe! As mentioned above, textures are also great for sound absorption. If your room lacks texture and has a lot of smooth surfaces, try balancing out the clean lines by adding texture.
Clutter – There is no doubt that clutter is triggering. A small pile of mail on the counter can cause discomfort to some people. Having a space full of “stuff” clogs up the energy flow. If there's a lot of stagnant energy in a room, it can make us anxious.
Lighting – Harsh lighting (especially fluorescent bulbs) can create anxiety and headaches, and affect sleep, so consider layering the lighting. Focus on overhead lighting, add task lighting for specific needs, and then accent lighting in the form of lamps with soft white bulbs. Utilize your accent lighting during the evenings to encourage your body to calm down and prepare for sleep. LED bulbs last incredibly long and save energy, but they also come in various lighting colors. Pick the one that feels soft and warm.
By knowing how your surroundings can impact you, try to implement some of these ideas in your home, and notice if you feel a positive shift in how you feel!
I was recently asked by Redfin to contribute some Feng Shui tips for their article on small spaces. Check it out below or click HERE!
If you’re living in a small apartment and feel like your space is always cluttered, feels confined, or the atmosphere just feels off, you’re not alone. Luckily, no matter the size or layout of your apartment, you can easily transform your small space with Feng Shui. And what better time than the spring to declutter and decorate to create a well-balanced, harmonious home?
To help you get started, we’ve reached out to Feng Shui experts across the country for their best advice on transforming a small apartment with Feng Shui. So whether you’re renting a studio apartment in San Francisco or living in Denver, Atlanta, or another city where you can get more bang for your buck, these transformational Feng Shui tips will help you make the most of your small space.
Set the tone for your apartment with the entrance
Half the battle is won through paying extra attention to your home’s entrance or main door. The main door has the utmost importance, along with the kitchen and bedroom, which forms the critical trinity in home Feng Shui. Apartments with good Feng Shui will have a bright and spacious entrance and walkway (called the “Bright Hall”). - Feng Shui Discovery
Small spaces are cozy and comforting. To make the most of it, keep all areas tidy, the bathroom door closed, and move shoes away from the front door. As small as your place may be, keep the front door clear so chi can come into your home to fill it with prosperous energy. If you can, keep two planters on the outside of the front door. When looking out the front door from the inside, the planter on the left side should be larger than the one on the right side to increase your luck and protection. - Kerstin Tracy
Choose colors intentionally to create a soothing home atmosphere
Small spaces may feel even smaller if there’s too much stuff or too many colors everywhere. Give your apartment breathing space by keeping a wall in a light, neutral color and use wall scones that reflect light upwards. Apply soothing colors that you see out in nature, such as aquamarines, sky blues, light sand beach tones, or light shades of grays that inspire a sense of freedom and comfort. This is a simple way to bring nature into your space and give your mind a place to rest. - Zenotica
Utilize mirrors to lighten your space and incorporate plants to bring in the wood element
Mirrors are excellent in small spaces as they encourage good Feng Shui and lighten and brighten throughout. Love plants? Position the mirror to reflect the plant, and you’ll amplify the wood element of Feng Shui. Need a serene grounding energy in your space? Shape is key in Feng Shui, so go with a square or rectangular-shaped mirror. - Pure Living with Lisa Morton
Place furniture and artwork with balance in mind
A small space can be just as beautiful as a large space when you follow the rules of Feng Shui. Make sure you don’t have too much stuff than your space allows for. If you need to declutter, ask yourself, "do I need this" or "do I love this" when looking at each item. If not, consider letting it go. Having a few right-sized pieces of furniture balanced properly in the room makes a huge difference in how a space feels. It’s almost important that you don’t over-accessorize. A few statement pieces and art on the walls with depth or a large mirror can make the room feel more expansive. Keep in mind that every wall doesn’t need art, but it needs to be placed properly, so it’s balanced in the room. - Metro Interiors
Allow your apartment to feel lighter and brighter by decluttering
Encourage positive energy to enter and flow through your home by removing clutter - which is anything that’s no longer used or doesn’t have a proper home. Clutter drags you down and creates barriers in your life, while decluttering makes a space feel lighter and brighter, boosting energy and making space for new opportunities. Fix or discard broken items and invest in colorful or white stacking boxes to tidy paperwork, sentimental items, important papers, and stationery. Wicker or sisal baskets can be used in the pantry for storage and the bathroom for toiletries. After you’ve cleared your home of clutter, donate items and clothing you don't need or will no longer use. - Anne Roselt
Only keep your favorite items
With small spaces, it’s crucial to pair down your belongings to your absolute favorites and necessities. You want the right balance of things for the size of your space because a space can only hold so much before the energy flow gets blocked and stagnant. Clutter blocks the energy flow in an environment, inhibiting positive energy flow in your life. - Montero Healing Arts
Always keep functionality in mind
Remember that less is more, so keep it simple, and function should always come first. Ideal for smaller spaces, consider mid-century modern furniture with its pleasing contours and soft, tapered, generally rounded edges. Steer away from furniture with points as the points cast poison arrows at those in front of them. Paint your walls in a single, light color as this creates a sense of expanse. - ZenSpot Institute
Distinguish a beginning and end with your work from home setup
If you have a small apartment or studio with an open floor plan and you’re working from home, place a simple shoji screen in front of your desk to close the door on your work for the day. Use soft lighting in other areas of the apartment to draw attention away from the work area. - Awakened Home
Fill your new apartment with items you love and bring you the most joy
The most important idea to remember in Feng Shui is that you must love and feel comfortable with your surroundings. Love conquers all. The most important rules in Feng Shui are 1) get rid of clutter, 2) only have what you use, need, or want, and 3) surround yourself with what you love, what makes you feel comfortable, and what brings you happiness. - Dianne Lawson
Maintain the balance of Yin and Yang throughout your apartment
Keep the balance of Yin and Yang in the entire apartment rather than in each defined space or room. Yin and Yang must be equally present as they are inseparable forces. Focus on balancing the main rooms as follows: the bedroom is Yin, (passive energy is black) water, and calm. Try incorporating artwork with the water element or blue hues. The kitchen and living room are Yang, (active energy is white) fire, and, energetic. Use bright colors and plants to activate this element. - Landolac Designs
Focus on the layout of your apartment and arrange rooms, so they align with their purpose
When done properly, Feng Shui can transform your life by harnessing the prevailing energies in the physical environment to suit you, your life goals, and your lifestyle. Ideally, a Feng Shui master would assist you in finding the best apartment block for you and then the best available apartment in that block. But if you already live in your apartment or own your home, we can still achieve transformative results. It is all about the layout of your apartment and ensuring the rooms are fit for purpose and set up in the best possible way. A properly qualified Feng Shui master can help you arrange your rooms and align your activities such as work, sleep, exercise, and rest to make the best use of the prevailing energies in your apartment or studio. - Master Boon of Feng Shui with Master Boon
Clean and minimal spaces allow for abundance
When you think of a large and wealthy home, you soon realize that there’s room for abundance, meaning that all surfaces, like drawer tops, tables, etc. only have a few items on them and no shoes or coats are visible in the entryway. So get organized, declutter every horizontal surface, and let the abundance of Chi flow in now that you’ll have the room for it. And don't forget fresh flowers. - Healing with Heli
Thoughtfully decorate your home
The magic ingredients to making a small apartment look spacious are to place your intention on decluttering and allowing for a vibrant flow of energy to circulate throughout. To achieve that, avoid decorating with small objects spread around and be sure to dedicate areas where functionality blends with themed decor. Leave space between those areas for the Qi to circulate smoothly and choose a wall color that exudes a personal message to your apartment, whether it is serene, minimalistic, or exuberant. Then accessorize your space with non-angular furniture wherever possible and harmonizing colors. - Chez Feng Shui
Use the Bagua Map to Feng Shui your apartment
Lay the Bagua Map at your apartment door, aligning the Career gua to your doorway, to discover where the specific guas are. Next, think about what you’d most like to change in your life. Are you trying to attract love? If yes, enhance the Love & Marriage gua with pairs of things such as matching candleholders, two bird figurines (like lovebirds), or a picture of a couple that captures the love you’d like to manifest. If love and marriage are in your bedroom (and even if it isn’t), remember your bedroom should be a serene sanctuary for rest and romance only. - Feng Shui Made Simple
Originally published on Redfin
Once upon a time, people wanted everything in their house to match. They matched wallpaper to a border, which matched the flooring, draperies, sofa, accent chair, lamp, and each piece of decor down to the bookends. Thank goodness the days of the “matchy-matchy” interiors are gone! Now, we want our spaces to reflect our unique styles. We have shifted to allow more freedom in decorating and design, and few of the old “rules” still apply. It’s all about being authentic and sharing you and your family’s interests and personalities.
Are you looking to create a space that feels more true to your style? Here are some tips for creating a space that is all your own!
Your style and décor can speak volumes about who you are. Let it highlight those extraordinary things that make you and your family special!
I believe in taking time first thing each morning to create a positive mindset for the new day that has just begun.
Over the years, I've developed good habits to create a morning routine that helps prepare me for my day. My routine isn't anything complicated. It's full of simple things, like making my bed, drinking a glass of water to get my body up and running, and giving myself time to enjoy my morning coffee, take my supplements, and recite my daily affirmation. Practicing these habits set me up for success and ready to tackle anything the day might bring.
However, those rituals I do to start my morning wouldn't feel nearly as good if I didn't have my Wake Up light to help get me out of bed in the first place! When I started using that, I wholly upgraded my mornings!
I used to have two alarm clocks and hit the snooze multiple times to get myself out of bed. Every time I'd hear the blaring alarm I would jump out of my skin, yet immediately go back to sleep, and then finally roll out of bed groggy and frazzled. Not a great way to start the day!
After reading some excellent reviews, I purchased a Phillips Wake Up light a few years ago. I was skeptical that it would help me but thought it was worth trying.
This alarm clock changed my life! You set the alarm, and a gentle light gradually turns on about 15 minutes before the actual alarm time. It is supposed to mimic the sunrise. Of course, the intensity is adjustable, as is the alarm sound (I selected a bird chirping noise).
I now wake up gently and quickly before the alarm goes off - not with the jarring sense my old alarm gave me. I feel rested and refreshed each morning - as if I'd slept in! If you're like me, struggling with waking up, I recommend a Wake-Up Light!
These are also some great options!
How can good energy flow freely through your space if it's being blocked by "stuff"? Clutter is considered a detriment in Feng Shui. I tell my clients that the better they clean and declutter before introducing Feng Shui tactics, the better the outcome!
Perhaps you get overwhelmed by clutter. Do you think about decluttering and feel paralyzed? Do you need help knowing how or where to start? Or maybe you know you should declutter but keep putting it off, allowing more items to accumulate until it seems impossible. If you can relate to any of those scenarios, I have a few tips to fight that overwhelming feeling and to set you up for success as you create more space in your home and your life!
"Nature is not a place to visit. It is home." – Gary Snyder.
Winter months bring holidays and family gatherings, but they often mean busier than usual schedules, less daylight, and cold or erratic weather. It's easy to hibernate by getting into our day-to-day routines and lessen time outside, disconnecting us from earth and nature. Spending time outdoors helps us feel more centered, grounded, and connected naturally. So, when that goes away, it tends to be easier to feel frazzled, disconnected, or off-balance. The good news is that there are ways to help counter these not-so-cozy feelings by making your indoor space reflect nature.
Within the interior design and architecture field, Biophilic Design focuses on bringing elements of nature into your built environment. You can achieve this through décor, wall coverings, flooring materials, upholstery, and more. A growing trend (literally!) are living plant walls and mini gardens - especially in office spaces.
Similarly, the ancient art and science principles of Feng Shui encourage a deeper connection to the Earth Element during the cold winter months. To promote this connection, try introducing grounding colors that you would see when digging into the earth - beige, tan, brown, or cream. Incorporating horizontal lines into patterns and fabrics can have a similar effect, especially if using natural materials in your environment.
Are you feeling inspired yet? Check out these ideas and tips to help bring the outdoors in to create and enjoy a more natural indoor environment this season!
Texture – Various textures can bring a natural feeling into your space. I recommend a chunky throw to curl up with, some textured pillows as décor, and furniture that gives you that deliciously cozy snuggle feeling.
Natural Materials – When selecting fabrics and finishes, opt for natural materials such as silk, wool, cotton, bamboo, brick, stone, or wood. Avoid synthetic materials if possible. Incorporate decor items made of wood or stone to a table or bookshelf, or use sand, rocks, and plants for even more natural influence.
Plants – Indoor plants are a fantastic way to feel connected to nature. They provide clean oxygen and can freshen up any room. Look for plants with soft, rounded leaves
Artwork – Don't have a green thumb? Using art that depicts nature is a great way to decorate your space. Love landscape photography? Great! Maybe a watercolor showing a field of flowers is your preference. Perfect! Find a piece that depicts nature and makes you smile.
Aromatherapy – Scent is powerful! When selecting scent, avoid synthetic fragrances and focus on candles created using high-quality essential oils such as lavender or clary sage. I also love to diffuse citrus scents such as grapefruit, lemon, and lime. They lift your mood and also make your kitchen smell amazing!
Try one or a few of these tips in a room and see if you can notice a difference in how your space feels as we wait for the arrival of Spring.
I love to work out and especially love a hot, sweaty yoga class. I teach yoga too, so as you can imagine, there are a lot of workout clothes in my closet. Unfortunately, there is a point where your clothes start to smell not so fresh, even before your class begins, which can be so frustrating and sometimes embarrassing!
I felt like I had experimented with everything from adding baking soda or vinegar to the wash and even ordering specialty laundry detergent to rid my clothes of the odor and grime. Nothing seemed to work. Since I try to avoid as many synthetic fragrances as possible, using a scent to mask the smell was not an option - plus, it would have probably made it worse! Just when I was ready to give up and toss these stinky clothes out, a friend mentioned Laundry Stripping. She said it was relatively easy and used a few products I hadn't yet tried. I decided to give it a whirl to save my favorite green animal print yoga pants just a little longer.
A few things to note:
• ¼ cup Borax Detergent Booster
• ¼ cup Washing Soda
• ½ cup Powdered Laundry Detergent
*Optional ¼ cup Calgon, recommended if you desire added softness
Begin by filling the tup with hot water. The hotter, the better! I turned the spigot as far as it could go.
Fill the tub halfway and add the ingredients. Remember, the water is steaming hot, so I recommend using something other than your hand to swish the water around. I used a plastic mop handle to help stir up the mix. When the tub was ¾ full, I added the clothes.
I was stripping primarily dark colors, so initially, I did see the water discolor from the dye in the clothing. I was happy I didn't have any lighter shades in this batch. I recommend keeping similar colors together to avoid any dye transfer.
Next is the easy part: you let your clothes soak for up to six hours in the tub with the mixture. I set a timer and swished the clothes around with the mop handle every hour, but I don't suppose this is necessary - it just helped pass the time.
I emptied the tub at the six-hour mark and wrung out the clothes. From there, I transferred them to my washing machine, where I used the "rinse and spin" cycle. Once finished, I moved them to my dryer, and voila!
My first real test was my hot yoga class, and I'm happy to report that at this time, my workout clothes are still odor-free!
*Note that I take part in the Amazon Affiliate (Associate) program where I may earn a small commission from sales made through affiliate links.
1/20/2022 0 Comments
My Top Books of 2021!
I love to read! Curling up with a cup of tea and a book is something that makes me feel so relaxed and pampered.
Below is a list of some of the books that I read in 2021 and would recommend. You'll find a variety of topics and interests, hopefully one of them lands on your book list for 2022!
The High Five Habit
I'll be totally honest; I've not been a fan of Mel Robbins in the past. Not even sure why, I just wasn't into her. Then my friend Nikki gave a great recommendation of this book, so I thought I'd give it a whirl. It was my overall favorite book of 2021!
In The High Five Habit, Mel teaches you how to "take control of your life with one simple habit". I definitely felt funny giving myself a high five each morning but.... something did shift!
This book by Amanda Cook is "The Ultimate Guide for Wellness Entrepreneurs to Nail Your Niche and Find Clients Online".
Just like many of you I had to shift my business over the past couple years. I'd always offered online work but had to dive into more virtual consultations and meetings with my clients. This book is great if you're a rather new entrepreneur or if you're like me and just always wanting to learn more to improve your business. Sure, some of the concepts in the book were not new to me, but it encouraged me to check back in with my approach.
Hummingbird - Broken Wings
This book written by Spencer K. Prescott is part of the author's "paranormal suspense" series. This is not something I'd normally read! I'm not into scary movies or anything of the sort but I honestly, wanted to give it a try because the author is actually one of my clients!
I really was surprised and was drawn in by the characters, and I overall enjoyed this book. I did have to stop reading it just before bed though as I did get the goosebumps from a few pages. I transitioned to reading a few pages over lunch! If you enjoy sci-fi/fantasy books, give it a try and then you'll be ready when the second book of the series is released!
The Biology of Belief
I honestly can't believe I hadn't read this book until now! The Biology of Belief by Bruce H. Lipton Ph.D. was originally published in 2005 and has been revised twice. In this book he discusses "The Science of How Thoughts Control Life". While this is something I've always believed in, reading his scientific approach was fascinating. I will not say that it was an easy read though. This was another one that I had to transition to reading over lunch as it wasn't the easiest read. Definitely check out this book, just don't expect to breeze through it!
The Glass Castle
This book was recommended to me by a friend as we were discussing the book Educated by Tara Westover.
If Educated made your jaw drop, then this one will too. It's just a fascinating book that I couldn't put down. Some pages were difficult to read, but powerful! I believe they made a movie several years back. Did you see it? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
The Teacher Appears
Several months back I was in a bit of a funk. I was teaching too many yoga classes and my schedule was pretty wild. This practice that I loved had turned into just a job! My good friend gave me this book at the perfect time.
The Teacher Appears by Brian Leaf consists of "108 Prompts to Power Your Yoga Practice". If you're in a funk or just need to be inspired again in your yoga practice or teaching check this one out! It definetly helped me.
90 Day Wellness Journal
This wellness journal created by Nikki Lanigan was just the perfect reset that I needed at the end of 2021.
I currently have five more days before I've completed the 90 days. I'll be honest, I did have a couple random days that it just didn't happen, but hey, thats life.
Having a space beyond my normal planner to write, brainstorm and take notes on my priorities and self care was really valuable and helped me remember daily just what was important to me.
Now that I've shared some of my favorite books from 2021, I'd love to hear what some of yours are!
Please add yours in the comments below.