Feng shui: a Beginners Guide

  1. feng shui specialist and
    life coach zoi mpichtas shares her top tips for
    creating a balanced and harmonious home

feng shui (pronounced fung shway) is
an ancient chinese knowledge that originated 6,000 years ago.
it explains how the placement of objects affects the
energy flow in your home, and by extension your personal energy
flow. feng shui takes the approach that your surroundings affect
not just your level of material comfort, but also your physical and
mental health, relationships and success.

profile: zoi mpichtas

before discovering feng shui, i had a successful corporate
career in the fashion industry as a chief operating officer for a
multinational company. i felt trapped in a job that lacked meaning
and purpose.

after a burnout (that’s what happens when you work 90
hours a week and don’t listen to your body), i booked my trip to
asia. that was my turning point. i discovered feng shui through
research and decided to become a practitioner.

current projects

i work with private clients, architects and interior designers.
we are currently working with gert voorjans (interior designer of
mick jagger and dries van noten) on his home and office in
antwerp. we also oversaw the design of a
40,000m2 residential building in taipei for
zaha hadid.

though i do love ‘total redos’, a complete overhaul
isn’t always necessary. most of my clients are seeking to improve
an existing home, so we simply move the furniture and add some
colors and objects in order to optimise the space.

3 common myths to avoid

people tend to falsely believe that feng shui is…

  • a quick fix for all of your problems
  • a superstitious or magical belief system, or a new age
    system
  • a luxury only the rich and famous can afford

applying feng shui to your home

symmetry and the yin and yang principle are
key.  the main aim is to find balance and harmony in
your life through environmental analysis. feng shui allows you to
discover the potential of your home and make it work for you. i can
draw up an energetic map of your home that relates to your desires,
whether that’s wealth, health or good relationships.

bedrooms:

i look at beams, windows and wall decoration, especially
above the bed. positioning the bed under a beam can cause health
issues, and wall decoration such as paintings above the bed affects
the quality of your sleep.

living rooms:

try to avoid sitting under beams or with your back to a
window, which can make you feel uncomfortable and restless. closed
or covered bookshelves improve the energy of a space, making the
room more harmonious, balanced and peaceful.

9 tips for the layout of your home

  1. there should be an open space on the inside of the main door –
    no wall, bathroom or stove.
  2. avoid a straight line from the front to a back door or
    window.
  3. the back of the house must be quiet.
  4. no bathrooms or utility rooms at the center of the
    house.
  5. stoves should not be seen from the front door.
  6. the house cannot be divided in half by a hallway or staircase,
    as this causes divisions in the household.
  7. doors should not be in alignment with beds.
  8. place every bed against a solid wall.
  9. toilets cannot be:
  • in alignment with beds
  • opposite the main door
  • above the main door
  • opposite or in alignment with the stove

astrology in feng shui

i can make differences without astrology but results are quicker
and more profound with birth details.

colours

your favourable and unfavourable colours come from astrological
analysis. from my experience, intuitive people are automatically
attracted to their favourable colours, but this isn’t always
true.

elements

if you favour fire, for instance, i would suggest making use of
candles and the colours red, orange and purple. having a fireplace
in your home would also be ideal.

see our workspace design ideas

7 tips for workspaces

  1. clean out your desk drawers and filing
    cabinets.
    throw out, or recycle, anything you haven’t used
    in six months.
  2. do not face a wall.
  3. face a window for yang energy.
  4. do not sit in alignment with a door. the spot
    furthest from the door is a “protected” location, and we perform
    better at work when we feel safe and supported.
  5. sit with your back to a solid wall. the back
    is the vulnerable yin side. it governs the quality of your health
    and relationships.
  6. to your left should be the most active
    energy
     – i.e. doors and windows. the left is the yang
    side, associated with male energy. it influences material
    opportunities, wealth and prosperity. if you cannot place your desk
    in this position, place a television, cd player or another object
    that generates activity.
  7. to your right should be quiet energy. the
    right is the receptive yin side, associated with female energy.
    place heavy pieces of furniture here.

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