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Saturday, February 2, 2008

How to Use Feng Shui to Get Love, Money, Respect and Happiness

Move Your Stuff, Change Your Life: How to Use Feng Shui to Get Love, Money, Respect and Happiness

by Karen Rauch Carter

Why Can't We All Just Get Along? -- Relationships and Love

If you lovingly move your stuff in the Relationship corner according to feng shui wisdom, you can enhance your life in many ways. You can

  • find "the one"

  • make a commitment without fear

  • get married

  • put the sizzle back into a relationship

  • get along better with family, friends, and coworkers

  • learn to trust people again.

Let's take the word relationship. The root word is relate. The question here is, how do things in your home relate to one another? How does your particular combination of household items affect how you relate to others on a subconscious level? Can you relate? Not yet? OK. Here's how it works. First you need to find the Relationship corner. It happens to be the back right-hand corner of the whole house, as you walk in the front door. Enter here and hold on tight -- you may not be alone tonight!

Just a Spent Fuel Rod in the Toxic Waste Dump of Love?

Are relationship blues causing you to consider a career as a sensory-deprivation-tank test volunteer? Whether you're looking for Mr./Mrs. Right or for Mr./Mrs. Right Now, here are some tips to help you in your search for a successful relationship.

Certain colors and objects reflect love. Pink, red, and white are excellent Relationship colors. Flowers and heart shapes are perfect Relationship objects. (See? Valentine's Day is not just a Hallmark holiday after all.) Just stick those things in your corner. It's that easy. It may sound crazy, but think of one thing about love that isn't.

Love is not a sight, a sound, or a taste(although in some cases it can be). It's a feeling, something emotional and intuitive. It's intuition that makes feng shui work. So look around your home or room, and walk over to your Relationship corner. How does it feel? Loving? Probably not, or you'd be out on a date instead of reading this book. Focus your energy on this very special corner, carefully decorate it, and think loving thoughts. Then loving things will naturally happen in your life. I once knew a woman who, upon hearing about feng shui for the first time, walked over and threw a red pair of panties in her Relationship corner. She said to herself, "There, take that," and didn't give it another thought. A month later she was happily married to a millionaire. It could happen to you! But you have to want it and you have to do what it takes to make it happen. It all begins with awareness and action. Lights, camera, action -- you are now the star of your own love story (and you get to decide what it's rated).

Be prepared for the avalanche of affection you discover on your new feng shui journey. At times it can seem like a landslide of love, a tsunami of sensuality, an earthquake of emotions. Bear in mind this caution: use the tools wisely and don't overdo it. Too many lovers and too much love can bring a whole new set of problems to your life. Then you'll need another book to solve those problems.

What is appropriate for your Relationship corner? Take a look.

Power Tools for Relationships and Love

Mirrors Love is energy, and energy is a living thing. Control this energy by bouncing it around the room using mirrors. They work twenty-four hours a day, drawing in the light and energy so you can attract that special someone. Round ones work best here.

Candles Candles generate heat and energy. Heat up your corner and heat up your love life. Try using one for each person in the relationship.

Hot Tub It's about as hot and steamy as it gets.

Fresh Flowers Dandelions from the crack in the sidewalk, or long-stem roses -- if they're beautiful, fragrant, or full of life to you, they'll work here.

And continuing in the plant category: mistletoe is an obvious choice for love and relationships.

Think Pink Soft, satiny, sensuous pink. Fresh, frosty, frilly pink. Pink feels like love, so let it color your corner. Add the Energizer bunny if you think there is a need to keep going and going...

Anything Red The power is in the feeling of the color. Red hearts are obvious, but use what you have: a jar of maraschino cherries, a can of tomato soup (it worked for Andy Warhol), a silk scarf, a notebook, a red-hot chili pepper.

Undergarments Does this really need an explanation?

Sensual Sounds Since musical taste is in the ear of the beholder, you're on your own a little here. But I would venture to say, head-banging guitar or drum solos don't get Relationship ch'i in the mood.

Symbols That Mean Love to You Come on. Get creative. You can do it. Here are some of my personal favorites:

  • Barbie and Ken in formal bridal wear

  • Barbie and G.I. Joe

  • fireworks

  • animal-print material

  • a bottle of champagne and two glasses

  • a bride-and-groom wedding cake decoration

  • actually, two of just about anything -- statues, lovebirds, plants, lights, pillows

  • a bowl of passion fruit or Hershey's Kisses

(A man I knew had an old yellow ski lift sign above his bed that said Singles Pair Up Here. Tacky to me, but it worked for him.)

Equality Make sure there is equality on both sides of the bed (whatever gua it falls into in the home). Two matching nightstands are best, even -- and especially -- if you are single. Don't take one of the matching tables and use it in another part of the house. This will cause imbalance in a relationship.

Hazardous Materials for Relationships and Love

Negative Images Don't cloud your corner with unhappy thoughts. Pictures of ex-lovers, icebergs, limp noodles, riots, or the Hindenburg explosion won't foster loving thoughts. Thoughts are energy too, very much related to the energy of love.

"Unfriendly" Stuff Cactus, Venus flytraps, and stinkweed plants do not a loving statement make. Lose the medieval weapon collection too.

"Frigid" Stuff The air conditioner and refrigerator are working against you if you want a hot love life.

"Single" Stuff If you are stuck with a twin bed for now, at least invest in a guest pillow. Lose the photos of yourself alone in this corner. Take a look around and see if you have surrounded yourself with "single" symbols -- especially art. I can't tell you how many feng shui consultations for relationship-seeking single women I have done where they have decorated their entire homes with art depicting women alone.

Games You don't want to be playing games in your relationship, do you?

Uncleanliness Creating a loving energy is difficult when dust balls, fingernail clippings, and old Twinkie wrappers clutter your corner.

Storage That space under the bed looks like the perfect place to tuck away holiday wrapping paper, skis, and suitcases, but if you are looking for a relationship without a lot of baggage, clean it out. Having the area under your bed stuffed with stuff is the monster that makes us have bad dreams as adults.

Distractions If your television is in the Relationship corner (especially if it also happens to be your bedroom), it may be getting in between you and your mate. If your computer is there, you may be more interested in surfing the Net than boogie-boarding with a loved one. If your ex-boyfriend's guitar is there, you may find yourself hanging on to that old song, rather than finding a new one.

If these things must stay, however, drape them, when not in use, with a nice fabric befitting the Relationship corner. The color cobalt blue is said to have EMF-negating properties, which may be a good idea for all those computer cords and screens.

Be open to change. The type of mate you desire may not be the best person for you. Forget old ideas of love. They didn?t work before, so why carry those into the future? Keep your eyes peeled for new and improved expressions of love. They may come from where you least expect them.

Be Careful What You Wish For...

I know of someone who couldn't figure out what was wrong with her love life. All the men she attracted were married. Granted, they'd have been about perfect if they hadn't been married, but she didn't want to be the one to break up a marriage. She told me she had taken my advice, but it wasn't working. Months earlier, I had told her to write down what she was looking for in a man and place the paper in her Relationship corner. I asked her to show me the writing and had to laugh when I read the banner she had made for the corner: I want a husband! Well, that was exactly what she kept getting -- husbands!

Be careful what you wish for because it may come back exactly how you ordered it. If you didn?t get what you wanted, look again to see if it was what you asked for. It could have been all in the wording of your request. ?Those? filling orders read them quite literally.

Really, My Seventeen Cats and I Are Fine, We Don't Need Anyone Else

If you are stuck in thinking that people are unnecessary in your life and that you have all you need right at home by yourself, you may want to rethink things a bit. Living the life of a hermit may be good if your intention is to watch your body hair grow. But if it comes from fear, mistrust, or anger, then you must start on the path to having relationships with people. Living alone didn't do much for Ted Kaczynski and it won't do much for you. Let's start by allowing people to feel comfortable coming to you. Walk out of your room or home and take a look with a visitor's eye at what you have to do to get inside. Is it unclear how to find your door? Is the path filled with clutter and other obstacles that hamper visitors? Is the address missing or confusing? Make sure there is a welcoming and orderly route to find you. Shine the door knocker, paint the door, place a pot with a flowering plant outside, open the shades, make your place inviting.

Then place photos of happy people in your Relationship corner. Better still, all around you. The more the better. If you don't have any, cut them out of magazines, get them off the Internet, or clip the Snap, Crackle, and Pop characters off the cereal box. Just surround yourself with people! You can also use any of the traditional ancient Chinese cures from Chapter 1, like hanging a chime or a crystal in the corner, or placing a new healthy plant there. Get used to it, and then go out and get into the real world. Perhaps by placing your telephone in that corner you will be inclined to make calls that generate relationships (discontinue if it only gets you long-distance relationships). Tie a red ribbon on the incoming cord to invigorate the ch'i and stimulate more calls.

People. People who need people...listen to Babs on this one.

It?s always a good idea to enhance your Family gua along with your Relationship gua. This will help connect you with people who will treat you like part of their family. Whether in business or amid marital bliss, it usually helps to be bonded in this way. (See Chapter 9.)

Back Off and Nobody Gets Hurt

If life is miserable because there is a certain person who won't leave you alone, try this: place a cactus in your Fame section (I repeat: Fame section) with the exact intention of keeping this specific person away from you. Although it is a feng shui nightmare to have a cactus in the Relationship corner, it can be used in Fame. The Fame and Relationship areas work well together because the Fame area helps garner respect for you. If you use the cactus there, you will be respected and left alone. If it is a person you work with, try placing a small cactus in the Fame area of your desk with the intention that the coworker leave you alone. If you are unsure of how to intend this to be so, simply place the cactus in the location and say either out loud or to yourself, "Matilda (or whoever), leave me alone." Then you can pump up the feng shui with some of the tips outlined in Chapter 12. Remember -- cactus plants are allowed in the Fame and not the Relationship gua.

Mirrors are another way of ricocheting those goobers out of your life. But you have to be careful. You may stir up solutions that you didn't have in mind. I know of a woman who had been divorced for over a year and still shared the same house and bed with her husband. She wanted him to leave, so she placed a mirror against the wall directly at his head as he lay in bed. This disrupted him so much that he rooted around, found the mirror, and removed it. She placed another mirror there, and out of nowhere he started sleeping with his feet at the head of the bed. Last I heard, she happily said, "Problem solved. I bought my own house and moved out." I'll leave it up to you to figure out if this cure worked or not.

My Roommates Are Driving Me Crazy

Now let's talk about problem relationships with people other than lovers. They could be siblings, parents, friends, coworkers, the bitchy checkout girl at the mall -- anyone in your life whose vibes are clashing with yours.

First try a simple solution. Write their name on a piece of paper along with yours. Remember the colors? Try red or pink. Perhaps cut it into a heart shape. Place it in the corner. Maybe you have a whole slew of people you need to have better relations with. Place each of them on a separate paper (unless they somehow go together).

I consulted on a new hair salon where there were six equal partners. Although everyone seemed excited about their venture, they were concerned that they might not always see eye-to-eye with business decisions and would need relationship help in the future. We immediately addressed the situation. They wrote all their names on the drywall and drew one big heart around them all before the wall was painted. They know that heart will be under that paint forever. It has been one year since the salon opened, and no squabbles yet! Once again, you don't even have to see the feng shui to have it work for you.

Not Always the Bridesmaid

Perhaps the question I most often get asked in my practice is, "How do I find the one?" Here's the answer: start with a thorough cleaning of the Relationship area. If you want to clean the entire room or rooms that fall into this area, so much the better. Do this to clear out all of the past relationships that didn't work.

Sometimes you can instinctively use feng shui without even knowing it. My friend Melody threw out every item in her house that was pink, including her phone, dishes, and all articles of clothing with pink in them. This was before she knew anything about feng shui. I explained what she was doing from a feng shui point of view, and she said that indeed she wanted to stop attracting the same wrong men. It was truly symbolizing "Out with the old, in with the new" in regard to her relationships.

Another thing to do is look at the bed and its location in the bedroom. Even if it is not a part of the Relationship gua in the home, it strongly affects Relationship ch'i. Just as the stove is a symbol of Prosperity wherever it is in the home, the bed symbolizes Relationships anywhere.

What do your bed and bedroom say about you? Are they inviting? Does it feel like there is room enough for another person in the room or the bed? If one side of the bed is jammed up against the wall, pull it out and perhaps set up a little nightstand for the future lover. Decorate it with things you hope will appeal to them.

The best way to achieve optimum results when you are building your Relationship area is to be in the frame of mind that you are doing this solely for the creation of a loving relationship with someone who is perfect for you. It may be a leap of faith for some, but asking for ?the perfect person for me? rather than for a specific person by name will result in the best mate in the world, rather than the best mate among the people you know now. Odds are better with the first way. Trust me.

Sleeping Single in a Double Bed

As I stated above, surrounding yourself with "single" stuff does not lead to a life overwhelmed with love interests. Pay special attention to the Relationship corner of your bedroom and be sure you are not giving off "I Prefer to Sleep Alone" signals if that is not your preference.

There was a woman who wanted love but had a huge painting of a woman alone staring down at her from this bedroom corner. When the symbolism of being alone was explained, she replied, "That's interesting. I'm a twin and I have always been searching for a singular identity. Since I put that picture there, I have been more autonomous with her than ever before." Unfortunately, she became autonomous with everyone else, too. (A better cure would be to use another item with specific intention to gain autonomy only from the twin.)

My So-Called Wife

Sara and Marty fell madly in love and got married. Everything was perfect. They decided to get a dog, thinking it would be good training for the future responsibility of having children. They got a beautiful golden retriever, along with all the fixin's -- the toys, the brushes, the food, and a beautiful bed. They came home and placed the dog's bed in the corner of their bedroom so they could all sleep safely together. Unfortunately, the Relationship corner was where the dog's bed landed. Suddenly, everything was about the dog. It didn't take long for it to start coming between them -- literally, in their bed. They thought it was cute at first -- he was so small and cuddly. But then they noticed they didn't have the time or energy to even think of raising kids, what with all this dog stuff. After all, he was going to school now! I asked Marty one day about having children and he said he and Sara were working on their relationship first. I was shocked. I had to take a look around. Upon inspecting the Relationship corner, I quickly told him about how important this corner was to their relationship and that they had created a threesome with the dog. He said it felt that way, and now he had a new determination to get his wife back. The dog's bed moved, and so did the energy. They are happily working on having those kids they said they always wanted.

Whatever resides in the Relationship corner besides you and your partner may falsely seem more important than your relationship. At a minimum, it may wiggle its way between the two of you, looking for equal attention.

Yo Quiero "Cu-ch'i Cu-ch'i"

Perhaps you are in a relationship but are looking to spice up your sex life. Maybe you are single and want to get a little more than you have been lately. Whatever the circumstance, let's talk about sex -- steamy, sticky, sultry sex. Now, I am separating sex from quality, loving relationships here to better illustrate how to get exactly what you want. If sex is your goal, place symbols of physical pleasure such as massage books, oils, condoms, smutty magazines, sex toys, trashy lingerie, and aphrodisiacs in your Relationship area. How about burning one of those sex-chakra candles?

If your mate isn't as frisky as you would like him or her to be, place red under the bed, perhaps a red scarf or cloth under the mattress. Red is an energy activator. I know of a woman who placed the red under her husband's side only because she thought he needed to catch up with her sexual appetite. To her amazement, after about one month she found herself removing it because he was now more frisky than she!

You don't have any of these things lying around to create your sex den? Shame on you! Well, then cut them out of magazines and make a montage in the area. Or place the pictures in a secret box in the space. Now, since this is merely a physical thing you are looking for, I would spice up the Health area as well. Go to the center of the home or room and place something that appeals to both your physical health and pleasure, such as facial mud (remember, the element in this area is earth). Or maybe burn some long, hot, dripping flesh-toned candles (fire makes earth). Are you starting to see the possibilities?

And finally, since you need help from another person to achieve your goal of sex, you may want to spice up your Helpful People area. You can be as extravagant as you want. A simple solution is to write, "I have awesome sex easily available to me," on a paper placed in the area. The bagua color for the Helpful People area is silver or gray, so place the paper in a silver box if you have one. An extravagant way is having a chrome or silver sculpture of fornicating couples in the area. A cheap way is to use aluminum foil around the paper request. Go with what appeals to your lifestyle and budget.

Try to appease each of the senses when you are creating your love den. Here are some quick ideas:

  • smell -- scented candles or lotions, fresh flowers (no deodorizers from a can)

  • touch -- velvet, silk, tassels, leather, feathers (no rough, dry hands allowed)

  • sound -- music, ocean waves, thunderstorm, crackling fire (no sports on TV)

  • sight -- soft lighting, sexy undergarments (no piles of laundry or pictures of Mom)

  • taste -- chocolate, whipped cream, champagne, strawberries (vacuum yesterday's cookie crumbs off the bed, please)
Our karmic makeup is designed so that we come to this earth to serve and love ourselves as well as others. Please be clear that if you choose sex for sex?s sake, choose it for the sheer joy of the physical pleasure or your ability to please another physically, not because of power, control, dominance, or self-confidence issues. These conditions may cause you to create additional karma to be resolved at another time.

The Revolving Door to My Bedroom

Where you sleep has a lot of impact on your personal energy. It can affect your health, mental attitude, and love life as much as anything. Remember, even if the bedroom is not in the Relationship gua, it still may affect relationships. Things to look for around your bed:

Doors If a door is in a direct line with your bed you may be experiencing health problems in the area of your body that is closest to the door. If it is at the foot of your bed, your feet may stink or you may have weak ankles or shin splints. If the door hits the middle of the bed on one side, perhaps you may be experiencing problems with organs on that side (as you lie on your back in bed), or the person that sleeps on that side may have health problems there. Move your bed out of this alignment. If there is no alternative location and the door is at the foot of the bed, try placing a trunk at the foot of the bed and placing a mirror of some kind inside it facing toward the door to reflect it away from the bed. Another alternative would be to place red items in the trunk to slow the flow. No trunk? How about a red bench or chair? No furniture? Tape a red ribbon across the bottom of the bed frame.

Also, try not to place the head of your bed against the wall that has the door along it -- you don't want someone startling you as you sleep. If this is the only location you have, place a shiny object or mirror in a location that reflects the door to you while in bed.

Windows Do not place the head of your bed under a window. Who needs Romeo scaring the PJs off you in the middle of the night when he comes a-tapping? If there is no alternative, place a red item (or a symbol -- like a little toy Doberman pinscher) on the sill to protect you. Wooden shutters may also be helpful.

Beams Wherever a visible beam cuts across your bed, it severs that part of your body. I'm talking about structural beams here, not light or laser beams. Serious health issues can arise. If it runs between you and your partner's side of the bed, you will have to expend most of your energy overcoming that beam, which is dividing you from your partner. If beams are inevitable, place a mirror on your nightstands facing up to lighten the load of the beams over you. Another, more decorative cure would be to take a piece of fabric at least as big as the bed and tack it to the ceiling directly over the bed in a billowy, upholstered look (maybe with ornaments or tassels at tack points). Then, when you look up while lying in your bed, you will see a romantic, luxurious fabric not unlike a canopy bed cover, rather than the arrow-slinging beams. One final cure is to draw arrows on the sides of the beams, pointing up. Weird, huh? "Beam me up, Scotty!"

Ceilings Try not to locate your bed under a sloping ceiling. Wherever the ceiling lowers, your energy gets smashed. For example, if the ceiling slopes down toward the head of your bed, you may experience such ailments as headaches, forgetfulness, and sinus conditions. Again, place mirrors facing up somewhere in this location (under or on a night stand, and so forth) if it is your only option for bed placement.

Protruding Corners (Creating Arrow Ch'i) If your bedroom has a corner protruding into it, try to avoid having it point at your bed. Use one of the cures stated in the last chapter, like placing a plant at the corner; or try to visually erase it by hanging a mobile or crystal in front of the corner.

Mirrors If you sit up in your bed and see your reflection in a mirror in front of you, try to block it out. Those full-length sliding mirrored closet doors can give you the willies at night. Hang curtains that can be pulled across the doors at night, or try using a folding screen.

If you have mirrors on the ceiling, get out of the seventies.

Elements What's the bed made of? Perhaps the main element making the bed is playing against your favor. So, let's play the element "rock, paper, scissors" game.

A wooden bed is OK just about everywhere except in the middle of the room, where the wood would uproot the earth section. (Add yellow and green if that is your only option.) Do not put a metal bed in the Family section of the room, as metal cuts wood. It is best in the Creativity section. Get that water bed out of the Fame section. It's best in the Family section, where water feeds wood.

Remember, the bagua of a room is found just as the bagua of the entire house is -- by aligning the Skills and Knowledge, Career, and Helpful People guas up with the wall that the door is on.

What Good Could Come of This?

I had a client, Meranda, who called me to feng shui her home before her husband, Rob, returned from the hospital. The doctors were treating him for a broken hip and intestinal problems (yes, he had the bathroom door ch'i plowing into him in his hip area of the bed). While in the hospital, Rob started becoming delusional and paranoid. Eventually, they wanted to keep him, not because of his original problems but because of his new mental condition.

I worked on the home with all my might, and miraculously, Rob turned a corner and was released. Rob made recovery headway that astounded the doctors. They told him to keep up whatever he was doing.

Almost fully recovered, he decided to run an errand. While driving, he was involved in what was, at first, an extremely minor fender bender, in which his head jerked and tapped the window. From all accounts, the accident looked like no big deal, but it put Rob into a health-compromising tailspin in which his seemingly minor maladies quickly took his life. (In hindsight, Meranda thinks that Rob was supposed to pass in the hospital, and due to the feng shui, she got some extra time with him.)

But that's not where the story ends. During the year after Rob died, Meranda slowly cleared out Rob's things and started making small changes to the home. After about one year, she decided to rearrange the bedroom and buy a new mattress. While moving the armoire, she found Rob's wallet -- one of his last personal effects still at home. She had misplaced it a year earlier. But now, she was finally able to let it go. Symbolically and energetically, she closed one door, which allowed another to open. With the exception of a few pieces of furniture, the bedroom (and the ch'i) was now totally different than when Rob was alive.

Then Meranda, who was Catholic by upbringing (Rob was Jewish), decided to look into converting to Judaism. She and Rob had discussed converting when he was alive, but he thought it was not necessary. One day, while in temple, she started conversing with a gentleman from London who was in town visiting a friend. They quickly found out they were in the same boat with regard to having lost their spouses. The British gentleman asked if he could see her again before he left town.

"The only reason I agreed was because I knew he was flying back to London soon. It was safe. I had not a thought of dating in my mind," Meranda confessed. They became almost inseparable during his remaining time in the States and have been in contact over the phone quite often ever since.

Although his entire family and his successful business are in London, he recently purchased a condo near her home in the States. "We've decided to just see what happens," Meranda said. She ended our conversation with, "I'm happier than I ever thought I could be."

The morals of the story are:

  1. 1When it's your time to go, it's your time (give or take a little with feng shui, perhaps).

  2. Be on the lookout for opportunities. If the British gent hadn't been British (just a visitor), Meranda said, she would have turned him down, cutting herself off from the universal flow. She would have passed up her chance for happiness without even knowing it.

  3. If you think feng shui has stopped working for you because something dreadful has happened, think again. Even though you cannot possibly see anything good from such a tragic event, trust that the universe can.
Love is an energy. Energy is a living thing. Therefore, to live fully we all need to give love and receive love. And if you have taken the time to feng shui your Relationship corner, it is no longer just a corner. It is a shrine to amour. Now every time you look over there, you?ll think loving thoughts. And since thoughts are also energy and very much related to the energy of love, when you think loving thoughts, loving things will naturally begin to happen in your life.

"Come In -- May I Take Your Clothes?"

While we're on the subject of beds, when you walk in the front door, make sure that you do not see the bed first. If you are in a studio apartment or dorm room, place an object that catches your eye upon entering, to distract the first look from your bed. Try placing a folding screen between the bed and the rest of the apartment during the day, or make it look like a couch, with accessories like pillows and end tables. If you have to pass through your bedroom to get to other parts of the house, like the bathroom, apply the same cure to take your eye to another object rather than the bed. From a great piece of art to a glittery jar full of colorful hair scrunchies, use your imagination to make it work for you. Blocking the bed from first view not only helps avoid inviting too much sexual energy into one's life; it also helps if you sleep too much -- so, sleepaholics take note as well.


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