Winter is the time for hibernation and dormancy, a state of stillness. In this state we turn inward and nurture ourselves as we prepare for the approaching newness of spring.
The Feng Shui element associated with the season of winter is water. And, of the five elements, water is considered the "reverting phase" and more Yin in nature. It's naturally cool, has the capacity to be still and produce an introspective influence. So, why not use this time as an opportunity to assess what works in your life.
If you still feel a little weary after a long, cold winter, if you are going through many changes as most people are during this stage of the world's social and economic affairs, start to connect with nature a little more. Slowly, without pressure, change pace a little and begin your cycle of movement and your advance into spring.
I love spring. It's the season full of beauty and celebrations, all of which reflect the wonders of nature, the rebirth and renewal of all things and a genuine optimism for new beginnings in all aspects of life.
For most of us, the pursuit to become more, to be renewed, vibrant and dynamic, is especially strong during the season of spring, when nature, our best teacher, clearly demonstrates the power of regeneration and rejuvenation.
Exploit this fresh and vibrant spring influence to your best advantage. Breathe it in, digest it and learn from it - use its influence to benefit your own life. Start by turning off the TV and taking a stroll in the park. Last week, my husband and I spent the day at our local National Park and it was glorious. The day brought with it a little sunshine, a light drizzle of rain, an abundance of flora, all varieties of wondrous birds, roaming kangaroos and the odd spurt of colour. Watch nature gracefully renew herself, from a small blade of grass to a big old tree, all expressing a clean, lively new energy bursting forth.
This is a great time for a brief review of where life is at - without pressure and without declarations. This is the time I particularly focus on my home and breathing fresh life into it. What is the Feng Shui energy of your home like at the moment?
To be able to draw in something new and fresh into your life it's generally considered you have to give up some of the old. Particularly old habits, old "stuff" that's sitting around simply because you can't be bothered moving it on, old thought patterns - whatever it might be - the thing, those things that do not serve you any longer - give them up. However, new energy does not necessarily equate to new things. Newness can simply come from a fresh way of looking at what you already have, a new framework of thought. It's that simple.
Everything has a certain vibrational influence and releasing what no longer serves you brings in positive energy and a genuine space for renewal. The simple act of redistributing what you already have, such as exchanging the cushions from one room to another, moving the wall art, re-arranging furniture, photos or rugs around the home, can breathe new life into your space.
Adding or removing something in your personal space, while not absolutely necessary, also frees up energy, space and time for new things to come in.
Since the late '70s, every spring, without fail, I go through every single cupboard in the home. I remove items of clothing from my wardrobe that either don't fit or I haven't worn in a while. I scrub the kitchen and remove bowls and utensils that are no longer useful or wanted and I do the same in the linen closet. I then give these items to a charitable organisation, to someone who needs them far more than me and...the cupboards are tidy and clean.
Finally, I choose a special day where I open all the windows and doors - open the entire home to fresh and clean energy.
So, get in tune with the energy of spring and tap into its source; listen to it and use the nature of things as a guide. In fact, this is how Feng Shui started thousands of years ago, as the committed and lengthy study of nature by the wise sages of the time. They listened with reverence, then translated their knowledge in ways that allowed us to connect more fully with the natural way of things and align ourselves with the rhythms of nature.
Renew, refresh, revitalise and enjoy.
Juliana Abram's courses are endorsed by the International Feng Shui Association