Making Peace with the Time Change

feng shui lightingGot this question today while teaching my feng shui certification class.

“Can feng shui help when we suffer from changing the clock back from daylight savings time?”

Good one! I never tackled this before, so I thought it was a good time to come up with some suggestions. It’s been over a week already since we changed the clock back, ending Daylight Savings Time. And, my butt is still dragging in the afternoon. I’m still completely disoriented by the lack of sun at 4:30pm. Everyone at my house, including the cats, are ready to eat at an hour earlier than usual.

So what do we do? Grumble? Complain?

Here are a few ideas that can help us settle more into this time of  year and find our peace.

Make sure the lighting is good

The lighting in our homes has a profound impact on our mood and even more so this time of year. Without natural light at the end of our workday, adequate artificial light in our homes will help with this transition.

Check the lighting in your most-used rooms. Do you feel comfortable, or does it feel inadequate? When I ask, most people tell me that their living or family room is too dim and feels uncomfortable. Why is it that we neglect our lamps? Most of us do, myself included.

First of all, most of the time, we do not have enough sources of light in a room. We may only have one or two lamps in a huge room, or a ceiling light.

Many rooms have ceiling lights connected to a switch by the door as you enter. But often these overhead lights are often too harsh. They caste a downward light and odd shadows, which drains our energy. If you have a room with an overhead light (such as a globe or ceiling fan light) turn it on and notice how you feel. Now, turn on a lamp or two, and turn off the overhead light. See how the energy shifts.

Another major contributor to low energy is low wattage. We might have enough sources of light, but only 40 watt bulbs in them. This could be fine if we have several lamps in the room, but not good if we have only one!  Check out this article for basic lighting 101. (It gives some useful information on types of lighting and how to determine the appropriate wattage for the use of a room.)

Need Fresh Stimulation?

There is never a bad time to add fresh, live plants and flowers to our home. I visited Longwood Gardens this past weekend and was blown away by the vibrancy and beauty alive in November in the Conservatory (fancy name for huge greenhouse!). We don’t need to bring that much into our homes to make it feel great! Remember, plants refresh the air, re-balance the moisture in the air (adds more negative ions), and we are always refreshed by the beauty of green!

Time to Go “Hygge”

Metal is the natural element for late autumn. The energy of metal is to contract. Contract and conserve, just as trees in the winter. They pull their energy inward to weather the long, cold, dark months. Since we cannot separate ourselves from nature, this is what we, as humans, are meant to do as well.

This time of year is meant to get all cozy and such. We can look at this time as a way to nourish and replenish ourselves. We can actually move into this time with a great sense of appreciation.

The Danish call it “hygge” (pronounced “hoo-gah”). Surroundings ourselves with warmth and light and all that nurtures us. Candles, soft lighting, a fluffy throw blanket. Cuddling around a fireplace with a great novel and a glass of cognac. That is hygge. (Here is an article I wrote for elephant journal.)

So whatever you need to do to help with this transition, remember: December 21st is only 5 weeks away!

True Nature Quiz! 

Five Element personality quizDiscover Your True Nature Element and make simple shifts in your space to attract positive energy.

Wood - Fire - Earth - Metal - Water

Learn about the Five Elements with Maureen's book
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Creating Luminous Spaces

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