Published December 2nd, 2015
Feng Shui Tips to Warm Up Winter Months
By Michele Duffy
A white kitchen shows off food the best
How do you create holiday glow in your home? For many, it starts with a personal commitment to glow from within. Even in winter, our hearts and minds should be like bamboo: flexible and pliant, not rigid and frozen. Bring fiery, passionate warmth inside with loving gestures that affirm your commitment to self so you can manifest joy for others fully and completely.
What are the rituals you preserve each year and what new traditions will you try this year? The holiday season offers so many opportunities to introduce grace into our lives, for our personal enrichment as well as for the benefit of others, and we should keep in mind that if a holiday tradition stresses us out, then perhaps it is better to instead create space for what makes us happy, content and healthy.
Winter is ruled by the water element - think freezing cold ice and snow - so we do well to activate lots of the fire element in our now much cozier homes and even turn some of that attention to the workplace. Fire elements balance out the water element. Use spherical sculptures, candles, red Santa mugs to hold piping-hot peppermint cocoa, red berry arrangements, red bowed wreaths gracing the front entrance, plush red throws and pillows, and, of course, fire in safely-lit gas fireplaces to take winter's chill down a few notches.
Sound feng shui incorporates the five elements and when a space is truly balanced, using space as medicine, we can feel the benefits immediately. The fire element area of the Feng Shui Bagua is fame and reputation, but interestingly, this area also rules respect - with self-respect a large component of that.
This area is located at the far middle from the front entrance. It is a good placement for the kitchen with the fire energy of the stove. The stove and kitchen are highlighted around the holidays since holiday meals are prepared in this area of the home. Make sure stoves are functioning properly, new batteries are in the smoke detectors, there are abundant fire extinguishers, and carefully supervise candles. Or, if you prefer, use battery-operated candles.
Some tips for sound kitchen feng shui include cleaning your kitchen thoroughly, tossing out end-of-year fridge stuff, cleaning out date sensitive items from pantries to prepare for festive seasonal extras in the house, bringing a festive touch to countertops with holiday wine stoppers, filling the air with holiday scents like soy cinnamon vanilla candles, and adorning kitchens with fir tree groupings or wreaths, gingerbread houses or an advent calendar to delight the kid in us all. We all spend so much time in the kitchen, even if we are not the ones cooking, so bringing some joy and glitter to this area adds the warmth we need for sustenance during the winter months. Where your kitchen is placed in your home also will determine if the favorite color white for kitchen walls is truly auspicious in your particular home. It is believed that white shows off the colorful food best and enhances healthy eating.
As Feb. 8, 2016 and the New Year of the Yang Fire Monkey approaches again, the fire element continues to play a central energetic role so any fire safety preparation taken now will benefit the mindful.
Allow the warmth of the season to wash over you and ground you, restore you, renew you, so one reflectively gains powerful clarity about this and next year's lessons. Do your best to enjoy this holiday season's gifts with loved ones near.
Michele Duffy, BTB M.F.S. is an Orinda resident who, since 1999, enjoys creating "Space as Medicine" Feng Shui one space at a time, as well as hiking in nature, cooking, and spending time with her family; Canyon Ranch Feng Shui Master, International Feng Shui Guild (IFSG) Red Ribbon Professional. To schedule a professional 2015 Feng Shui Consultation, contact Michele at (520) 647-4887 or send an email to

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