In last week's post Re-Envisioning Our Home Office Study with the Icovia Planning Tool, I made a casual reference to using basic Feng Shui principles when designing our home. I started using the Bagua map about three years back pretty randomly, because I thought it "wouldn't hurt" to see how arranging my physical environment could impact the energy and progress in my life. I knew this to be true in the classroom environment and thought, it would most likely be true in the home environment as well. As an instructional coach, I was able to observe many teacher's classrooms and how the physical layout of the classroom interacted with the invisible forces of the space to affect the teacher and the kids. There's a lot of technique when it comes to managing a classroom of 25+ kids and get them to do what you need them to do, when you want them to do it, and part of that technique is how you arrange the space.
Teaching kids (and my studies in Biology, Psychology & Sociology) has taught me that people are (eerily) predictable (including myself) and go on auto-pilot mode if we do not make the effort to intentionally and consciously connect with the invisible energy fields around us.
Another reason why I'm decided to take a hot minute and learn more about how to "Feng Shui."
The Bagua Map is a Feng Shui tool that helps manifest dreams and goals by proactively directing energy in your environment to uplift and support your dreams and goals. Each area on the map has a corresponding energy center within your home (or apartment) environment. By superimposing the layout of the Bagua map on your house, apartment, office or room, you are able to locate the nine energy centers of the space and apply Feng Shui principles to maximize the benefits of energy in that area.
As you blend the masculine and feminine energies within you by balancing the desire to achieve "ultimate Feng Shui #goals" with a sense of peace and harmony, you proactively direct the energy of your room and its positive effects on your life.
If you think this sounds crazy, I'd challenge you to consciously become more intentional about observing the environments around you and experimenting with changes in your physical environment and their effects on your life. Some of the elements of Feng Shui really sounded ridiculous to me at the beginning, but as I approached the concept with an open mind and an open heart while concurrently experimenting and observing, I began to realize a lot of these principles work serendipitously.
I don't know how (have a lot of conjectures, but we can save that for another time). I don't know why. But it just does.
Feng Shui Bagua Map
Since I'm taking my home decor in a new direction, I decided that now would be an opportune time to "get into" Feng Shui by consistently applying these principles throughout our home in a more intentional way.
When I superimpose the Bagua map on our home, the home office (study) area lies in the front left of the Bagua, the energy center of Knowledge and Wisdom. We didn't intentionally choose our home layout to align with the Bagua map, however, much of our floor plan and room placement is pretty ideal when it comes to Feng Shui--and by ideal, I mean the space designated for work (like the home office) aligns with the corresponding energy center on the Bagua map (in this case, knowledge and wisdom).
The Knowledge and Wisdom center deals with higher education and inner contemplation. If you are a parent, this center can also enhance your children's education and learning abilities. This space is meant for learning new ideas, concepts, and techniques versus gathering useless information. It is meant to be a space where you are inspired to build on the accomplishments of those who came before to save time, energy, error and avoid reinventing the wheel.
Energizing this center by applying the principles of Feng Shui will allow you to gain greater knowledge in a new area, become a better student, inspire your children to study, quiet your mind, expand the process of self-discovery, and perhaps jumpstart a new meditative practice.
So what are some key considerations for this space?
just like any space in your home, the foundation of Feng Shui assumes a clutter free environment. Getting to this point was a process in and of itself, and I have Marie Kondo to thank for helping me find my way.
One of the things I really need to watch out for when I'm decluttering is my tendency to hold on to books, magazines and photos that no longer serve me. My bookshelf is past-due for a round of decluttering. I've recently felt unsure about the direction to take next in my learning, and when I look at my bookshelf, I realize a lot of my books are dated and/or internalized. By cleaning out my bookshelf, I subconsciously invite new books and ideas to enter my life.
Decorative Accents to Enhance the Feng Shui Effect.
Decorative accents for this space to engage your brain muscles and expand your scope of the world include:
- Healthy plants
- Lights, lamps & candles
- Deep blue and green items
- Books, tapes and videos you are currently studying or wish to study
- Environmental anchors of wisdom such as photos and paintings of people who inspire you to better
- Artwork depicting images of meditative spaces such as mountains, gardens or beaches
- Meditation objects such as a pillow, altar or spiritual music
- Fresh or silk flowers
- A water fountain to energize the knowledge of inner and outer "success"
Interestingly enough, I have a lot of these elements already present in my space. We just updated the wall color to be a deep blue (which again, was not planned, but great!), lots of green with the plants, plenty of books and photos of water and beaches and classical "spiritual" music.
Some items I'm now encouraged to add:
- A few more intentional photos of meditative spaces
- Record player + additional records to expand my classical record collection
- Lamps and candles
- A water fountain (?). (The water fountain feels the most "weird" to me, but when things feel weird, it's a prompting from the spirit to examine the mindset more).
While writing this post, I also found uniquefengshui.com to provide inspiration for additional decorative accents I can add to this space. What will I choose--I don't know yet! But will reveal in the final design!
A Prominently Displayed, Updated Vision Board
I haven't done a vision board in a while (an in a while, I mean in the past year or so). I made a vision list at the end of 2016, but it's definitely due for an update to reflect the changes in my life. I've never taken the time to put together a physical vision board, because I want it to be "quick and done," but perhaps now is a good opportunity to make a creative project out of it. I have a space next to the desk that needs something on the wall, and it seems like the perfect place for this board. I really like this idea where the entire wall is cork. Our space isn't designed for this, but this photo serves as inspiration to perhaps do something a bit different!
Words of Affirmation (or Quotes)
I'm all about having affirmations and reminders of affirmations all around the home, but there are a few affirmations that are specific for this space. You can either write them on a piece of paper, make a print and put them on your wall, or internalize them and bring them into consciousness with a physical reminder, like a crystal or stone.
- I am so grateful that I easily absorb and retain the information necessary to succeed and do what I'm created to do in my job.
- I am so grateful that I have been accepted into my chosen program at my desired university.
- Inner knowledge and wisdom are revealed to me when I listen with an open heart and an open mind.
Are you designing your knowledge & Wisdom energy center? What are some things you're including in your space? I'd love to trade ideas! Comment below or catch me on Instagram, @jackieboylhart.