Feng Shui to the Rescue Newsletter

Helping you attract wealth, harmony, love,
and much more.

December 2020

Numbers and Words
There are now as many approaches to Feng Shui as there are to architecture or interior design, and I advise you choose the one that resonates with you. I feel the same about numerology – I don’t believe we are predestined to specific outcomes based on the numbers in our birthdate, but if that’s what you believe, you should follow that approach. That’s why I haven’t written about the number 2020. But now, as we say goodbye to a year we would all like to forget, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that it did have significance in Chinese numerology. If you drill down the year 2020 by adding up all of its digits, you come up with the number 4.
In Chinese Feng Shui, four is considered unlucky because it sounds like the word "death" in certain dialects. When people who have a number 4 in their address have asked me about its significance, I have advised that because 4 doesn’t have this association in Western cultures, instead of worrying whether the number is unlucky, try thinking of 4 as sounding like the word "more."
Well, 2020 certainly brought us “more,” but not of anything we would like to repeat. So, I’m happy to write that the year 2021 distills down to the number 5, which represents change. It is associated with the balance of all Five Elements — Fire, Earth, Metal, Water, Wood. I’m hoping that means we’ll be off to a better start next year.
Thinking about the associations of words in specific cultures, I have to admit I’m disappointed that the OED couldn’t name one word of the year, but instead decided to cite a "new collective vocabulary relating to the coronavirus.” That’s especially frustrating for me because there are many words in their collective that I’m planning to enter into autocorrect when this is all over so I never have to see them again. That includes "social distancing," because that can't go away soon enough for me. Instead, I offer my personal Feng Shui word of the past year: balance. It's what we all tried so hard to achieve this past year.
What's your personal word for 2021? Email your nominees and I’ll post the results in a future newsletter.
Happy Holidays! Wishing you a New Year filled with wealth, harmony, love, joy – and above all else, balance.

Carol M. Olmstead, FSIA
Feng Shui Master Practitioner
Tip of the Month
Feng Shui Tips for December

Advice for Happy Holidays
I've dropped the "Troubled Times" subhead this month to represent my wish for a joyous holiday season for everyone, despite the challenges of this year. Instead, I've including a reboot of "Decorating Around the Bagua," and links to some of the most-requested holiday articles on my website.

Decorating Around the Bagua
People often ask how they can use Feng Shui principles to decorate for the holidays, including where to place family heirloom ornaments or menorahs. I advise using the bagua to decide. When you decorate your home around to the nine areas of the bagua, you activate the energy of the aspects of life that each area represents. To find these areas in your home, download a bagua from the "Basics" section at FengShuiForRealLife.com. Choose the bagua that matches the shape of your space.
  • Want to increase your wealth? Display Fire Element items in the Wealth area to represent abundance and money, such as the Christmas or Hanukkah gifts you are giving. 
  • Want people to think highly of you? Display items in the Future area that represent the Fire Element, including candles, stars, lights, poinsettias, or the menorah.  
  • Want to bring romance into your life or enhance your relationship? Add pairs of Fire Element items to the Love area, and items that represent love, or sweet items like cookies, cake, and especially chocolate.
  • Want to improve your relationships with children, toconceive a child, or to unblock your creativity? Display items in your Creativity area that represent the Metal Element, including shiny ornaments, a toy train set, dolls, musical instruments, or a metal dreidel.
  • Need more help in your life? Display Metal Element items in the Helpful People area that represent people helping you, especially images of Santa or angels, and gifts you have received.
  • Time for a career change? Display blue and black items in your Career Area, or objects that represent the Water Element, like snowmen, snowflakes, or icicles. 
  • Need more harmony in your life? Display Water Element items in your Harmony area, like books, or images that represent peace and tranquility. 
  • Need to encourage good family relationships? Display the Wood Element in the Family area, including the Christmas tree or pine branches, holly, or wooden decorations. 
  • Need to feel balanced? Display Earth Element items in the Grounding area at the center of your home that represent nature, such as a new plant or a bowl of fresh fruit.  

Clutter Clinic
Clear Clutter Seasonally
Clutter represents postponed decisions and the inability to move forward. That means when you get rid of that clutter on a seasonal basis, you take advantage of the natural changes around you to make room for new energy to flow in to take its place.

Winter – Let Go of Hobby Supplies
January is “Get Organized Month,” and one first step in getting organized is to get rid of supplies from hobbies that no longer interest you. Starting now and into the darkest months of winter, contact friends who are still pursuing the hobby and ask if they want your items. Or, sell the supplies online through a website dedicated to the hobby. Contact schools and community programs that teach the hobby to see if they can use your donation of supplies.

Spring – Spring Clean Your Workplace
You might not be working from your “regular” workplace right now, but wherever you are, clutter will keep you from moving forward in your career or business. A quick first clutter-clearing step is to remove the outdated notes, phone lists, take-out menus, etc. from your bulletin board or desk and replace them with new ones. Then, get rid of dried up pens and markers and pencils with worn-down erasers, and replace them with fresh ones. Dust your desk, your chair, and all plants. Remove everything from your shelves, dust, and put back only the books and manuals you currently use.

Summer – Clear and Clean Everyday Objects
Try these quick clutter-clearing projects to make your home feel lighter as the temperatures get hotter:
  • Clear out the top drawer of your dresser.
  • Sweep your porch or patio, aiming away from your house.
  • Wash your trashcans, including those inside your house and outside.
  • Remove old food from your refrigerator.
  • Declutter the area where you pay bills.
  • Sort through last year's school papers and selectively keep a few.
  • Wipe down your front door.
  • Clean your phone.

Fall – Handling Paper Clutter
As you start spending more time indoors, it's time to bust the clutter that accumulated inside while you were busy enjoying the outdoors. Go through all your rooms and gather your newspapers, magazines, and catalogs, and place them in piles on the table, then:
  • Go through your piles and if a newspaper is more than a day old, toss it.
  • If you have any magazines or catalogs that you know you will never read, toss them in the recycling and consider canceling your subscription.
  • If you have flagged magazine articles or catalog pages, tear out those pages and scan them so you have an electronic version, then add the pages and the entire issue to the recycling bin.
  • For magazines and catalogs you still want to read, write today's date on the cover and place them in your "reading area"; if you haven't read them in a month, recycle.
Q: I have a piano. My two daughters don't play; I don't play. One daughter used to take lessons, and I still wish one of us did. Maybe we will? We have a small house. It is just about the first thing you see when you walk in. Chuck it? My mom always mentions getting rid of it whenever she comes over. 
A: You already know what I’m going to recommend about the piano, don’t you? (I am singularly responsible for more treadmills leaving houses than arriving.) If you keep the piano, you risk having a “woulda-coulda-shoulda” attitude every time you see it. It can end up being a negative reminder of what you “wish one of us did.” And that translates to negative chi. To help you decide, try thinking about what you would put in place of the piano, and/or what you would do with the money you could get from selling it. Or, just do it: sign up for Zoom piano lessons for all three of you and see how it feels to actually play the piano.

Q: I am well aware that it's important to remove clutter, but I simply cannot do it in my second home because of an immediate health crisis. I cannot travel and I have no one I trust to go in there. I have a spare room filled with a jumble of boxes of papers related to my career that need to be sorted. I also have old financial records (in good order) in a few boxes in the master bedroom. I am concerned about this clutter affecting my health at present. Is there anything Feng Shui has to say about how I might mitigate this?
A: I’m wondering whether your illness is exacerbating your feeling of lack of control over your paper work, and over your home in general. While you are absent from the home, the goal is to try to change your mental picture of what you are now considering clutter. The best option would be for someone to go in and remove the boxes to an off-site storage site. Or, someone could cover the boxes with something dark - black plastic bags or a dark sheet - so they are symbolically hidden from your sight. But, since there is no one you trust to do that (which I think is adding to your stress), I suggest you find a photo of the house and cover it with a dark cloth or bag, with the stated intention of letting go of your fears about the clutter. That way the boxes will “rest” and stay “out of sight and mind” until you can deal with them in person. If you have a photo of the actual room where they are located, that’s best, but this cure will be just as effective if you cover a photo of the house. Another suggestion is that you mentally unpack the boxes and sort their contents, filing what supports you and your career, and getting rid of what no longer serves you. I encourage you take even one simple step to symbolically put this out of your mind for now so you can focus fully on your recovery. Sending positive energy for a speedy recovery you way!
Success Story
The Rewards of Keeping the Lid Down
For more than 20 years as a Feng Shui practitioner, I've been meeting great people and getting to see their homes, offices, and businesses. I give them advice, they make changes, and then they send me the most amazing stories of how simple Feng Shui changes yielded unexpected results. I met Kevin when I gave a workshop at a business incubator. His company's team occupied a small suite in the building, compete with their own bathroom. When it comes to bathrooms, I recommend keeping the toilet lid closed. The Feng Shui reason is so your wealth doesn't symbolically get flushed away. Less than a week after that workshop, I received two e-mails from Kevin.

Here's what Kevin wrote: 

Monday: We implemented the "keep the toilet seat closed" rule and we made an unexpected $4,000 this week! It was great! Besides the toilet seat change, we threw out a couple of dead or near-dead plants. I have not even tackled my clutter yet, so I am excited to see what else happens.
Friday: We just got another good contract that has been stalled for about 4 months... total is now $9,000 since we met you a week ago! I can't prove this is all related to the toilet seat, but it obviously didn't hurt. Hope you are giving this tip to everyone. 
Feng Shui Books
NEW! Now also available for Amazon Kindle.
Feng Shui to the Rescue: Rearrange Your Space, Shift Your Energy, Transform Your Life!

My new book is here! Feng Shui to the Rescue includes more than 400 answers to the questions that you - my clients, students, and readers - have been asking for the past 20 years. These are new questions, in addition to those I answered in my first book. I've also included 30 Success Stories (also new!) and 24 sets of topic-specific tips I call Fast 5 to help you avoid problems in the first place. 

The book covers the most-asked topics, like these and more:
* Love (finding it, losing it, finding it again)
* Wealth (making it, keeping it)
* Harmony (maintaining it, especially during the holidays)
* Clutter (tidying up)
* Careers & Business (finding jobs and clients)
* Mirrors (placing or removing them)
* Bedrooms & Beds (encouraging sleep)
* Real Estate (buying or selling a home)

Your book is such a treasure trove for me. I love how it's structured --well that makes sense!-- and I feel like I'm imbibing yummy vitamins when I learn new principles on every page, and am further rewarded by the quotations at the end of the sections. I just cannot imagine all the work that went into it as you teach readers, from scratch, these ancient and newly respected concepts and philosophies. What an accomplishment!
--Jessica Greenbaum, PoemsInCommunity.org
Publisher's Price: $19.99
Sale Price: $12.95

Quick Guide Cover

Feng Shui Quick Guide for Home and Office: Secrets for Attracting Wealth, Harmony, and Love

Still going strong after 10-years! This is my award-winning book that includes easy-to-follow basics, plus secrets to make the practical magic of Feng Shui work for you. This practical and easy-to-understand volume includes success stories from real people who followed these tips with big results. I've also included a tip-a-day calendar with 366 tips (there's one for leap year) to help you attract wealth, achieve harmony, improve relationships, advance your career, and clear clutter every day of the year. As a bonus, there's a month-by-month guide to clutter clearing.

The Feng Shui Quick Guide for Home and Office is the perfect gift for everyone on your list: clients, colleagues, family, friends, and you. Plus, it's a great way for real estate agents to say "thank you" to sellers and to welcome buyers into their new home.

I used to be a Feng Shui consultant; I'm now retired. I read about this new book and thought it would be a good one to brush up my Feng Shui with. (I already have about 50 books on Feng Shui.) I was very pleased to find that this was not just a re-hash of all the other books. It is a really good synopsis of the important points in Feng Shui, in a style that is easy to understand and apply. The author as done us all a real service in writing this one.

Publisher's Price: $15.95
Sale Price: $11.95

365 Feng Shui Secrets: Daily Tips to Attract Wealth, Harmony, and Love

I've revised my book for 2020! Want to earn more money? Yearning to rev-up your love life? Looking to create family harmony? Need to control clutter before it controls you? Or do you just need a good night's sleep? The simple Feng Shui advice in 365 Feng Shui Secrets can bring all this and more. For example, you will learn how to do the “Feng Shui Fling” at the beginning of the year (January 1), discover why you shouldn’t keep shoes near your front door (March 16), find out how to get a good night’s sleep (August 20), and read what gifts to give and avoid giving for the holidays (December 6). The tips cover all the seasons, holidays, and celebrations of your life. The calendar of tips in this e-book cover people and pets; love, marriage, parenting, divorce, remarriage, and blended families; your home, your office, and your car; your bedrooms, bathrooms, and every room in your house; your clothes and your closets. This ebook includes tips to help strengthen your relationships with your spouse and your children, your friends and your family, and even some advice if your loved ones are deployed overseas.

I was so excited when reading this book, that I started moving items around in my home immediately. I have tried to learn Feng Shui several times before, but it always seemed too complex. This book made it easy and is for American lifestyle and decor style!

Amazon Kindle Price: $5.99
Virtual Consultations Available!

"Feng Shui - Your Way"
When you have Feng Shui questions about your home, office, business, or workspace that go beyond the basics and you need to speak to the Feng Shui Expert, this virtual consulting option is for you! I will customize advice for the way you want to live in your home or work in your workspace. This is especially relevant today when we might need to rearrange our space to work at home and/or educate our children.

We'll schedule a 1-hour Zoom, FaceTime, or phone call to answer your questions and help you rearrange your space, shift your energy, and transform your life. It's your choice—ask about any room, any situation, any clutter-clearing problem, or any issue that needs a little Feng Shui TLC.

The "Feng Shui - Your Way" consultation includes:
  • Review of photos or a short video of your space.
  • 1-hour consultation by Zoom, phone, or FaceTime.
  • Personalized Feng Shui advice and guidance.
  • Follow-up coaching check-in so you stay on track.

After you register for the consultation, you'll receive instructions for creating a short video or taking photos, and for scheduling the session. During the consultation, I'll give you practical recommendations to rearrange, reorganize, and reuse what you already have, plus a plan to bring Feng Shui harmony to your space. You can take notes or record the session.

"Feng Shui - Your Way" recommendations typically cover this and more:
  • Re-arranging furniture
  • Picking the right decorations
  • Selecting and hanging artwork
  • Choosing the right color
  • Finding storage solutions
  • Dealing with clutter
  • Correcting lighting
  • Working at home
  • Locating your office power position
  • Setting up an at-home classroom
  • Re-purposing what you already own

This virtual consulting service is effective, and find out how Feng Shui can transform your life.
Feng Shui Training Via Zoom
Now, your entire group can learn practical Feng Shui tips from the comfort of their own homes.
I have taught thousands of clients, readers, and students the simple secrets of using Feng Shui to improve their lives, and now I can teach them to you and your group via Zoom. My webinars include customized training that I create to meet the specific needs of your organization, office, or group.
For more than 20 years, I have inspired diverse groups ranging from 5 to 500 with my in-person workshops. Now, I'm offering variations of the same presentations via Zoom so we can all stay home and stay safe.

Click here to see a list of some of my webinar and workshop audiences.

Email for details of how I can customize a webinar for you!
Video Class
Grow Your Business with Feng Shui
My 90-minute, self-paced video course includes tips for activating the Career/Work bagua area, along with simple changes you can make in your home that will advance your career or business. You'll learn six amazing tips that will help you create a space that supports you and your business. Watch as I use Feng Shui principles to conduct a hands-on transformation of a client's workplace and create a dynamic home office that opens the door to success.

People Are Talking About Carol's Videos and Podcasts: 

Carol, you're a rock star! I loved listening to the podcast of your interview with "Law of Attraction Talk Radio with Jewels," so I took your class. You continue to be an inspiration to me and have forever changed the way I arrange each home I've lived in since I first heard you speak in 2012. Keep up the good work! --GO

I took your class and watched several of your videos. Excellent! You have an absolute warm and welcoming approach. No wonder you are so successful. --CW 
This video class is nothing short of a delicious treat for your career. I loved it! Great practical pieces of advice. Well-taught in a fun, inspiring way. --RW
Did You Know?

Carol M. Olmstead, FSIA, is certified by the Feng Shui Institute of America and earned Red Ribbon Professional Status from the International Feng Shui Guild.

Articles in the Feng Shui To The Rescue Newsletter are copyrighted, but can be shared with credit to Carol M. Olmstead as author and link to www.FengShuiForRealLife.com.
Feng Shui for Real Life, LLC, and the Feng Shui To The Rescue Newsletter serve as a reference and guide for the principles of Feng Shui and as such bear no responsibility for results that a client or reader experiences. Individual results may vary based on the client's participation and intent.

©2020, Carol M. Olmstead