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Useful and Easy Feng Shui Tips

Edited from Rodika Tchi’s web article

To help you get started with good feng shui in your home, here are some helpful feng shui house steps for beginners:

  1. Clear Out Your Clutter,get rid of everything you do not love in your house. Clutter clearing is a time-and energy-consuming process that will feel like therapy, but it will help you “lighten up the load,” so to speak.Do not skip this step, as it is an essential one in creating harmonious house feng shui energy.
  2. Have Good Quality Air and Good Quality Lightin your house. These two elements are essential for good feng shui energy (called Chi) in your home. Open the windows often, introduce feng shui air-purifying plants or use an air-purifier. Allow as much natural light as possible into your home, and consider using full-spectrum lights.
  3. Define the Bagua,or the feng shui energy map of your house, by using one of the two main feng shui methods – the classical school bagua or the BTB grid. Once you define the bagua, you will know which areas of your home are connected to specific areas of your life. For example, in traditional feng shui, the Southeast feng shui area of your home is connected to the flow of money energy in your life.HERE ARE THE FENG SHUI AREAS OF YOUR BAGUA:
    • North (compass reading from 337.5 to 22.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Water
      Colors: Blue and Black
      Life Area: Career & Path in Life
    • Northeast (compass reading from 22.5 to 67.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Earth
      Colors: Beige, Light Yellow, and Sandy/Earthy
      Life Area: Spiritual Growth & Self-Cultivation
    • East (compass reading from 67.5 to 112.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Wood
      Colors: Brown and Green
      Life Area: Health & Family
    • Southeast (compass reading from 112.5 to 157.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Wood
      Colors: Brown and Green
      Life Area: Money & Abundance
    • South (compass reading from 157.5 to 202.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Fire
      Colors: Red, Orange, Purple, Pink and Bright Yellow
      Life Area: Fame & Reputation (a better translation is “The Light Within You”)
    • Southwest (compass reading from 202.5 to 247.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Earth
      Colors: Beige, Light Yellow, and Sandy/Earthy
      Life Area: Love & Marriage
    • West (compass reading from 247.5 to 292.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Metal
      Colors: White and Gray
      Life Area: Creativity & Children
    • Northwest (compass reading from 292.5 to 337.5)
      Feng Shui Element: Metal
      Colors: White and Gray
      Life Area: Helpful People, Blessings & Travel
  4. Find Out Your Feng Shui Birth Element and create a home to nourish and support your energy. For example, if your own element is Fire, you need to introduce the expressions of Fire feng shui element, such as the Fire element colors (red, orange, purple, magenta, pink, yellow), triangular shapes, etc.
    You will also need a strong Wood element in your home, as Wood feeds the Fire in the productive cycle/relationship of five feng shui elements.

    • THE FIRE ELEMENT:(ARIES March 21-April 19, LEO July 23-August 22, SAGITTARIUS November 22-December 21)
    • THE ELEMENT AIR:(GEMINI, May 21-June 21, LIBRA, September 23-October 22, AQUARIUS, January 20-February 18)
    • THE ELEMENT WATER:(CANCER, June 22-July 22, SCORPIO, OCTOBER 23-November 21, PISCES February 19-March 20)
    • THE ELEMENT EARTH: (TAURUS, April 20-May 20, VIRGO, August 23-September 22, CAPRICORN December 22-January 19)
  5. Always Be Mindful of the Feel of Your Home and how its energy influences your
    well-being. Make a habit of paying close attention to the so-called feng shui “trinity” that is deeply connected to your health – your bedroom, your bathroom and your kitchen. Nothing is static in the world of energy, so be wise and keep your home healthy and happy.

Teresa Van Lanen of Making Art of Life and Soul Connection, is an Occupational Therapist, Life Coach, SoulCollage® facilitator and Reiki practitioner.
Please follow and reach her on Facebook, Twitter and on www.makingartoflife.com..
She works with individuals who are wishing to connect with their inner spirit for a balanced happy life. Look for her fall Soul Connection workshops this month on the events page of her website.

The Gift of Receiving


What? That sounds backwards Teresa. Yes it does sound backwards but really the ability to receive with grace and gratitude are gifts. Being able to receive with an open hear and fully accepting the positive things that come your way can be the biggest gift you can give yourself this holiday season. Sounds simple but is it really? It requires:

  • Practice
  • Relinquishing control
  • Feeling worthy
  • Stepping into your power
  • Keeping your heart open

Practice and relinquishing control can be a big hurdles. You need to firstly recognize that these are issues for you. I often find myself discovering these things about myself and simply wanting them gone. But it takes patience with yourself. Practice being patient for the divine timing of events while keeping your energy in a positive place. And relinquishing control over the details of who, when, how things will happen. Repetitive practice in different situations is a good way of tackling these hurdles.

Feeling worthy of great things happening for you can be another difficult hurdle. This issue can be a stumbling block for so much. And when our unworthiness blocks good thing from coming our way, it fills our unworthiness engine and continues the cycle which we find ourselves perpetually trapped in. Work on your worthiness by accepting small things with and open heart. Then build up to bigger things.

Stepping into your power means to set boundaries regarding things that don’t meet your highest good. This can be related to self-destructive habits or other things. Stepping into your power is also accepting your abilities and using them for good.

And keeping your heart open is like a portal directly to Universal abundance. When you release control and are open to positive abundance, you feel worthy to accept and embrace your own power. Your heart is open and what a gift this is, to allow great things into your life. So my holiday wish for you is to open yourself to the gift of receiving with grace and gratitude. Happy Holidays my friends.

Teresa Van Lanen of Making Art of Life and Soul Connection, is an Occupational Therapist, Life Coach, SoulCollage® facilitator and Reiki practitioner.
Please follow and reach her on Facebook, Twitter and on www.makingartoflife.com..
She works with individuals who are wishing to connect with their inner spirit for a balanced happy life. Look for her fall Soul Connection workshops this month on the events page of her website.

Living with your Heart Open


Sometimes it is difficult to have compassion for ourselves or others over things that have been done or said. Or maybe there is difficulty in having feelings of being unsatisfied or stuck and not knowing why. There could also be a general lack of enthusiasm and happiness that affects us and our relationships. This can lead to loneliness and confusion. These are signs that your heart center is not fully open.

My belief is that by having a balanced heart center one is within their power and is being vulnerable with themselves and others. Being in your power means to use your inner wisdom and connection to spirit to become vulnerable. Using this wise mindedness to help you assess your inner and outer relationships will come from a perspective of vulnerability and compassion rather than one of woundedness or lack. This also helps guide us to gain a deeper capacity for compassion and love; to accept love without judgment for oneself or others.

Here are some tips for developing or maintaining an open heart:

  1. Getting to the core of why your heart is closed through mediums such as:
    • Meditation or hypnosis, to delve through the block to the deeper core issues.
    • Reiki sessions to help move the energy and gain balance in your chakras
    • SoulCollage® to help you with your inner dialogue and inner council.
  2. Then use complementary elements to maintain the heart center such as the:
    • Use of flower essence such as rose, magnolia and foxglove to assist with the flow of heart energy. Flower essence is a very gentle way of working with the bodie’s energy.
    • Use of essential oils to breathe in through steam or diffuser or to wear on the skin. Oils for the heart include: bergemount, geranium, lavender, lemon, orange, rose, sandalwood, and ylang ylang.
    • Using animal spirit guides such as the wolf; they can assist in developing the ability to love, build community awareness and to nurture support for yourself and others.
    • Use of stones or crytals to support your open heart during meditation, energy work or simply to have on your person such as: rose quartz, peridot, malachite, emerald and anagonite.
    • Use of angel cards, SoulCollage® cards or other transformational cards can assist in your mediation and daily affirmations regarding your open heart lessons.

Teresa Van Lanen of Making Art of Life and Soul Connection, is an Occupational Therapist, Life Coach, SoulCollage® facilitator and Reiki practitioner.
Please follow and reach her on Facebook, Twitter and on www.makingartoflife.com..
She works with individuals who are wishing to connect with their inner spirit for a balanced happy life. Look for her fall Soul Connection workshops this month on the events page of her website.

Does you Life have Detours?

Does you Life have Detours?
I have spent many hours driving on Wisconsin’s roadways this year with the construction and detours every few miles. It reminded me of how life can throw you detours that you don’t expect. It is an interesting parallel; going along your day with a clear destination in mind, going a little faster than maybe you should, and all of the sudden you need to slow down, allow for others on the road and follow the construction detours to get eventually back where you initially intended. Our Wisconsin road crews are typically really good about letting us know of these little diversions on our drive, which is not always the case in real life diversions.

I guess life’s detours can sneak up on us if we are not wary of the signs. One day we wake up and say to ourselves, how did I get here? Where did I get detoured from my intended path? Maybe you did not consciously have an intended path in the first place. If that’s the case it is easy to get distracted and travel back and forth with no destination in mind and then you wonder, how did I get here? Other times life’s detours are for very good reasons and may lead us to better destinations than we first had planned for ourselves. Here are some questions to see what kind of traveler you are.

When a detour of life gets in your path how do you respond and what might it say about who you are?

  • “How did I get here? Where am I?” You may be out of touch with your self and out of balance. Many times when people are in stress they can dissociate or compartmentalize aspects of their life to survive. This is a feeling of being lack of control. Your destination is always an idea and never a reality.
  • “I need to get back on track and on my path”. You will correct the detour and get back to where you started. Sometimes this can be out of fear to explore or experience other things or lack of trust that you will be on the right path no matter where you are. Ask yourself, “Did I experience what life had in store for me with this detour so I can avoid it in the future? Or so I can go to a different destination that is right for me now?”
  • “Let’s see where this takes me.” You are an explorer and want to experience what life throws you way. You are flexible and confident that the universe has your highest good in mind. This is an example of living in the moment to fully grasp life’s experiences.

Teresa Van Lanen of Making Art of Life and Soul Connection, is an Occupational Therapist, Life Coach, SoulCollage® facilitator and Reiki practitioner.
Please follow and reach her on Facebook, Twitter and on www.makingartoflife.com.
She works with individuals who are wishing to connect with their inner spirit for a balanced happy life. Look for her fall Soul Connection workshops on the events page of her website.

Is Stress Stressing You Out? 6 Steps to Deal with Stress

In today’s fast paced, multitasking world we find ourselves more stressed than ever before. When someone is in stress it has direct affects from hormones that govern many tasks like digestion, circulation and the brain function. And there are secondary affects of stress that can lead to disease and emotional distress.

Here are 6 steps you can take to help you manage through stress related issues.

  1. Consciousness: We can accommodate to stress and numb out from the reaction and body response to it. Become aware and recognize that you are feeling stress. This is done with no judgment as stress is a response to a situation in our environment that we are hard wired to attend to. However, many of us are out of tune to our bodies and need to practice some form of conscious insight to our feelings and body signals (increased pulse and breathing rate…).
  2. Breathe: You want to break the philological response to stress and performing conscious breathing is a great way to do this. Conscious breath work is a form of meditation that will add increased oxygen to your body and stop the adrenaline from pumping in acute stressful situations. Breath work also opens your second and third chakras that can become stagnant in more chronic stressful situations.
  3. Affirm:  Affirmations during or after breath work is a good energetic message to ourselves and to the universe that we are intending a positive shift out of the stress. Find a few affirmations that apply to your situation, “I am safe, I am able to handle whatever comes my way with grace….” Use your affirmations by letting them evolve as you move through the stress process.
  4. A-line: Balance your energy through varied practices like yoga, Reike, SoulCollage®, or Ti Chi to open your energy centers. Responding to stress and moving though it even in the most positive way can leave residual heavy energy stuck in your chakra centers. The sooner you can move this energy on out the more centered and balanced you will feel.
  5. Analyze: Is this something in my control or not? If it is in your control and you have gone through the above steps it becomes easier to make a plan that a-lines with your highest good. Often times when something is not in our control it can also lead to anxiety as we feel powerless against it. This is where spiritual practice (what ever that may be) and trust in the universe for your highest good comes into play.
  6. Maintain: Revisit steps 1-5 frequently. They are fluid and may require repetition several times per stressful event. Feel empowered and not a victim; you are in control with how you choose to respond to stress once you are conscious of it. Reliving the event by repeatedly telling your story can keep your energy in the stress mode and your energy gets stuck in that pattern believing the reinforcement of the story is what is the truth.

Teresa Van Lanen is a life coach and Occupational Therapist with over 30 years of experience. She works with individuals and groups to release blocks and increase their level of joy and happiness. Visit Teresa on facebook or her website www.makingartoflife.com.

What are Chakras?


At the cellular level, every living thing is made from energy and all energy contains a unique vibration. One such vibration is called the chakra. Chakras are centers of swirling energy that funnel into different areas in our bodies. The chakra centers connect us to a higher level of vibration; to balanced emotional and physical well-being. Here are the major chakra centers and a brief description of what it looks like and its purpose:

The seven major chakras are:

  • Root chakra: Red in color. This chakra is the grounding force that allows us to connect to the earth’s energies and empower our beings.
  • Sacral chakra: Orange in color. This chakra often offers us the opportunity to lessen our “control issues” and find a balance in our lives; achieving emotional balance.
  • Solar plexus chakra: Yellow in color. This is the area that defines our self-esteem.
  • Heart chakra: Pink or green in color. This love center of our human energy system is often the focus in bringing about a healing.
  • Throat chakra: Blue in color. The healthfulness of the fifth chakra is in relation to how honestly one expresses himself/herself.
  • Brow (third-eye) chakra: Indigo in color. It is our avenue to wisdom – learning from our experiences and putting them in perspective; intuition.
  • Crown chakra: Violet or white in color. We use the seventh chakra as a tool to communicate with our spiritual nature.

When there is an imbalance in the chakra centers, we can feel disconnected with our selves. We may feel restless, anxious or confused, or become physically ill. There are many practices that can be used to rebalance your chakra energy centers. Yoga, reiki, meditation and breath work are some of the practices that traditionally address chakra balance. Another tool is to use SoulCollage®. Through meditative focus, you can find an intuitive pairing of your chakra center with an animal guide.

Animal guides in SoulCollage® can be used to assist in balancing our vibrational energy centers and to ask for specific assistance from these guides and energies. Some animal guides will continue to show up in various ways until they are acknowledged. This happens when we have images or actual animals that reoccur in our environment over a period of time. For example, I remember having several sightings of bald eagles: dreams of eagles, mailings with eagles on them and seeing three bald eagles on a road trip. These eagles needed acknowledgement and are now representing my solar plexus chakra in my SoulCollage® cards.
Use SoulCollage® cards as a part of your self-balancing and your spiritual meditation. The use of the animal guides that represent your chakras is a perfect way of doing this. I pull out my animal guide cards when I need some balancing and intuitively ask which chakra requires balance and why. Use this practice along with yoga or meditative practice to help with your balanced energy.

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