Spring Cleaning the Feng Shui Way!

Clear your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual clutter


No, this is not a lecture on spring cleaning your house. This is a lecture on spring cleaning your life! We may not consciously be aware of it, but we constantly interact with our surroundings. Everything around us – both seen and unseen – carries energy and affects us.

Karen Kingston defines feng shui (fung shway’) as “the art of balancing and harmonizing the flow of natural energies in our surroundings to create beneficial effects in our lives.” The Chinese characters for feng shui are the characters for “wind” and “water.” Wind and water carry chi (life energy); in ancient times, good wind and good water meant good health and fortune. Like wind and water, energy flows all around us, including throughout our homes and offices.

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Water, water everywhere. How much do you drink?

(with apologies to Coleridge)

Water is H2O – a combination of hydrogen and oxygen. It covers more than 70% of the earth’s surface. It is the basis for all the fluids in the body; every cell and organ needs water. It makes up about 50-65% of the human body, more than 75% of the brain, more than 80% of blood, and 90% of the lungs. Water is essential for life as we know it. A human being can go for 3 to 5 days (depending on a number of factors) without water.

Why do we need water?

Every single one of the thousands of biochemical reactions in the body needs water.

Water helps regulate our body temperature. It cushions and lubricates joints. It protects internal organs and nourishes the brain, spinal cord and other tissues. Water keeps our digestive and elimination systems working smoothly. Without water, skin becomes dry, flaky and prone to developing wrinkles.

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Technostress will get you if you don’t watch out!

It’s human vs computers in the tech revolution

Why is technology so difficult? It’s invisible. Older, mechanical systems had parts we could take off, fix and reinstall. That’s not done with a computer! “We have difficulty understanding what we can’t see, touch or fix and it is human nature to fear or avoid what we can’t understand or explain” according to Weil and Rosen, authors of TechnoStress.

The term technostress was coined by clinical psychologist Dr. Craig Brod in 1984 (isn’t that ironic?). He defined it as “a modern disease of adaptation caused by an inability to cope with the new computer technologies.”

Techostress is the result of our struggles to accept technology and/or our over identification with technology. Signs of technostress can vary depending on age, gender and computer literacy.

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How to balance a bowling ball on a broomstick

You already do this – every day.

Gotcha! You don’t need a “how to” lesson on this, but maybe a refresher course is in order. The adult human head, on average, weighs 10 to 12 pounds. That’s the weight of a bowling ball. And the human spinal column is about the diameter of a broomstick. So all day, every day as you move around, you are balancing a bowling ball on a broomstick!

That means you ask your neck muscles to do a tremendous amount of work, holding your head up and moving it around. You make that job harder by assuming head-forward postures (HFP).

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Can your home or office make you sick?

Building Biology seeks healthy, ecologically sound environments

“Sick building syndrome” is a symptom of poor quality indoor air. Fumes given off (offgassing) by synthetic chemicals and toxins used in modern building materials that cannot escape a tightly-constructed, super-insulated home build up in the indoor environment. Moisture also is trapped; mold and mildew can be the result. Radon, a radioactive substance in the ground can seep into buildings.

Some people are exposed to toxins in the workplace. Even those not engaged in occupations with direct exposures (such as the printing industry, dry cleaning, hair salons or pest control) can be exposed to fumes trapped in tightly sealed, energy-efficient buildings. Re-circulated air in these buildings can hold fumes from carpets, cleaning chemicals, pesticides, copiers and inks.


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You’re Grounded! (but in a good way) – Part 2

Barefooting and earthing

You’re Grounded! (but in a good way) – Part 1 discussed centering and grounding. Grounding, though, also has a more literal interpretation. It can refer to the physical connection between your bioelectrical body and the earth’s surface. Barefooting and earthing are two more ways to become grounded.


Eastern philosophies are centered around a vital energy – the life force – called qi (or chi) or prana that exists in all things. Practices like yoga, t’ai chi and qigong, as well as many martial arts, advocate practicing barefoot and preferably outside on the ground, directly connecting us with earth qi. This connection allows us to “grow roots” into the earth giving us energy and stability. We attune to the fundamental rhythms of nature.

In traditional Chinese medicine, the kidneys store the essence of a person. There is a point on the bottom of the foot called the yong quan point or “bubbling spring.” This point is called Kidney 1 (KD1) in acupuncture and reflexology. KD1 is the first point on the energy meridian associated with the kidneys. Working on KD1 produces calm and relaxation. It is also used to address headaches and gastrointestinal issues by drawing excess energy down from the upper body and grounding it. Walking barefoot stimulates the many nerve endings on the soles of the feet. It also works KD1.

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You’re Grounded! (but in a good way) – Part 1

How to get centered and grounded



You’ve probably heard about your “center of balance.” This is a physical point where your weight is evenly distributed. In a similar manner, your energy center is also a physical (although invisible) point where your energies are balanced. You become centered by sinking into this point, becoming aware of the flow of your internal energies.

More specifically, centering means focusing on the hara. The hara (in Japanese) or tan t’ien (in Chinese) is the energy center located just below the navel. The hara is the second of the seven energy centers commonly known as chakras. Regarded as the “earth” center, it allows energy from the earth to be gathered up into the pelvis, then relayed out via the arms and hands. It is our center of power, equilibrium and stability, the nucleus of our physical and psychic powers.

Continue reading “You’re Grounded! (but in a good way) – Part 1”