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January

Welcome to the Feng Shui For Real Life E-zine, a monthly e-magazine with tips, success stories, and clutter-clearing advice to help you make simple Feng Shui changes to attract wealth, harmony, love, and much more.

Keep in touch between issues of the e-zine.
  • Connect on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/FengShuiForRealLife.
  • Follow my blog at www.FengShuiForRealLifeBlog.com.
  • Check out the latest articles on www.FengShuiForRealLife.com.
  • Watch my videos on YouTube.
  • Submit your questions via e-mail.
Carol M. Olmstead
Feng Shui Master Practitioner


Feng Shui Tip of the Month – Stick to Your Diet with Feng Shui
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If you made a New Year's resolution to lose weight this year you're not alone, because losing weight is at the top of the list of New Year's Resolution for 2014. Check out these nine Feng Shui tips to help you stick to your diet:
1. Hide Your Kitchen. If the kitchen is the first room you see when you enter the house, you're motivated to look for food. Keep the kitchen door closed or hang a mirror or artwork near the door to distract your eye away from the room. Avoid hanging photos on the fridge because they call your attention there.
2. Avoid the Color Red. Restaurants know that the color red stimulates appetite, but it's best to avoid using too much of it in your kitchen if you're trying to lose weight. Instead, choose blue, black, or floral patterns for your table coverings, place mats, and napkins.
3. Switch to Blue Plates. Blue is the color of the Water Element that reduces blood pressure and pulse. The term "Blue Plate Special" was popularized during the Depression when restaurant owners found that diners were satisfied with a smaller portion of food when it was served on a blue plate.
4. Remove Clutter. Excess "stuff" in the kitchen, basement, and attic can overwhelm you and psychologically add weight. The act of cleaning out the weight of the clutter in a kitchen can impact the weight of the person doing the clutter clearing.
5. Clear Your Closets. Get rid of clothes you've been saving for "when you lose weight" because when you hold on to clothes that don't fit, it symbolizes holding on to old behavior patterns. Plus, if you are holding on to outdated clothes you won't feel motivated to lose enough weight to wear them.
6. Remove Blocks to Weight Loss. Relocate your workout equipment to a room where you will actually use it. Donate or sell any exercise equipment you don't use, because keeping it sends a negative message of weight loss failure.
7. Add Mirrors. A mirror hung strategically on the refrigerator door or on the cabinet where you store snack food will reflect your body and reinforce your resolve to change your image.
8. Dine at a Beautiful Table. Decorate your table with fresh flowers, candles, and even use the "good" dishes so your smaller portions will seem more lavish. Treat yourself as an honored guest in your own home, especially when you are trying to change your eating habits.
9. Balance the Yin and Yang. Vary the color of your foods, serve light colored foods in brightly colored containers, and mix hot and spicy foods with lighter and milder flavors to create a Feng Shui balanced meal each time you eat.

Click here to read "Feng Shui Tips For Weight Loss" under the Articles tab in the "About Feng Shui" section on my website, www.FengShuiForRealLife.com.


Clutter Clinic -- 12 Things You Can Easily Throw Away
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January is Get Organized Month, and I say the way to celebrate is "just say throw" to your clutter. One easy way to clear clutter is to toss or donate things you never use anymore or that you never really needed. Is your utensil drawer so full you can barely close it? Are the plastic containers breeding in your kitchen cabinet overnight? Are you ever going to use that Bundt pan again? Here's a list of a dozen things you can donate, trash, or share with your friends so you end up with a clutter-free and more peaceful home.
  • Kitchen Utensils - Do you really need all of those duplicate spatulas, scrapers, and servers? Offer some to your friends, then donate or trash the rest of the dups. •
  • Coffee Mugs - Do you drink enough coffee or tea to justify all of the mugs you are keeping? Same advice here, choose those you love and donate the rest.
  • Plastic Containers - Do you have more tops than bottoms, or vice versa? Match up the tops and bottoms, then toss the singletons.
  • Vases - Are those inexpensive florist vases really worth keeping? Keep a few of the prettiest ones and get rid of the rest.
  • Magazines - Are the issues on your night table more than 2 months old? If so, you'll probably never read them and they will be put to better use if you donate them to a school or arts center.
  • Unread Books - Do you have a stack of books you "should" read but never get around to it? Time to donate them to the local library or trade them online through sites like www.paperbackswap.com.
  • Clothes - Are you holding on to clothes for when you lose weight? You'll actually feel lighter if you get rid of them and make room for new clothes in smaller sizes.
  • Kids' Artwork - Are you keeping every masterpiece? If a creation is not worth framing and hanging, take a photo of it and toss the original.
  • Electronics - Do you have a jungle of power cords and electronic paraphernalia in your desk drawer that may or may not work with your current equipment? Match up the cord with the gadget and let the rest go.
  • Linens - Do you even know if the sheets in your linen closet fit the current size of your beds? Keep two sets of sheets per bed, then find out if a local animal shelter can use the rest.
  • Medicine - Are any of the prescriptions or OTC drugs in your medicine chest expired? Keep the meds you're taking, then take the rest to your pharmacy rather than flushing them or throwing into the trash.
  • Toys - Have your kids outgrown the toys in their rooms? Help them choose toys to donate to less fortunate children, especially right after a birthday.

Want more? Click here to read another six ideas in the article in Family Circle Magazine.


Success Story – Attracting Buyers to a House
My client needed Feng Shui help because her home had been on the market for almost a year and had been shown less than a dozen times. No one seemed interested in even coming to look at her beautiful home in a prestigious neighborhood. When I arrived two things were immediately obvious. First, while she said she was ready to move forward after her divorce, there were reminders of her marriage throughout the home and it felt like she wasn't ready to let go of the house. Next, the third bedroom had been custom designed with built-in bunk beds that could be unappealing to some buyers, and the room needed to be re-purposed.

Here's what she wrote:
I wanted you to hear the positive response the house received after following your suggestions to remove everything personal. I went shopping for a foyer rug and made the other changes you suggested, especially getting rid of things from my marriage. You won't believe how much I took down from the walls. I asked my agent to remove the photo of the bunk bed room from the property listing, and I'm working on ideas to re-stage that room for a new purpose. As you suggested, my son and I packed five of our favorite things in a moving box as a sign that we were ready to move out - and the next day we had a showing! My agent said that the home felt very different this time, and that it seemed to shine in a different way. He said the buyers repeatedly commented positively on the feeling of the home, especially that it felt light and welcoming. So it looks like we are on our way to selling the house. Plus, I never realized I was holding on to so may things from my marriage. And unexpectedly, all of a sudden my love life is amazing. Wow, you are the best!

I would love to share YOUR success story. Email Carol Olmstead or call 1.800.652.9038 to schedule your home or office consultation.


Ask the Feng Shui Maven
Q: Your column about gift giving reminded me that I have a dilemma. A dear childhood friend died recently and her mother sent me one of her rings as a memento. It's gold with a large amethyst. I don't normally wear rings, although I might wear this one for special occasions if I can do so in a positive way. I would have to get it resized. Is this the best way to honor her memory, or would be better to display it, put it away, or get rid of it (hate the thought of doing that)?
A: I'm so sorry for the loss of your friend. How special that her mother thought to send you a memento. It's obvious that you don't want to get rid of the ring so that's not an option. As an alternative to resizing the ring, displaying it, or keeping it in a drawer, you could have the amethyst reset into a piece of jewelry that you would actually wear, like a pin, a pendant, or a bracelet. Or, you could create some kind of art piece that you would display in the Helpful People area of your home to symbolize an enduring friendship.

Q: My sister has our mother's ashes in an urn that she keeps in her home office, and it creeps me out. What room should she keep them in?
A: In Feng Shui, ashes are considered extremely "yin" or low energy, and it's not appropriate to keep them in a house along with the living. Some cemeteries and memorial gardens have places where ashes can be stored and the family can visit. Another suggestion is to return them to nature. Perhaps you and your sister could scatter or bury them in a place where your mother liked to visit.

Q: I'm missing the Helpful People area of my home, but the missing corner is on the concrete driveway. How do I make this kind of correction on a hard surface?
A: I recommend painting a small design on the driveway to mark the missing corner. This would be placed where the walls would come together if your house were a complete rectangle. I like to match the color and shape of the design to the Element that activates the bagua area you are missing. For example, the Helpful People Area is activated by the Metal Element, so you could paint a simple silver circle on the concrete. In fact, that's the correction I made on the driveway for my own missing Helpful People area. Just be sure to check your correction frequently, and if it's been worn away by the weather immediately repaint it. You can find detail for making this correction in Chapter 6 of my book, the Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office.

Do you have Feng Shui questions?
E-mail them to Carol Olmstead, then watch this ezine for the answers.


Feng Shui For Real Life In the News
There was lots of media coverage for Feng Shui For Real Life toward the end of last year. In case you missed any of these articles, click on the links below to read them.

Living Feng Shui Magazine. I was pleased to join my Feng Shui colleagues in contributing to the exciting new Living Feng Shui Magazine. The theme for this issue was flexibility and my article is titled "Opening Up a World of Possibilities with Feng Shui."
Click here to subscribe and read my article in the Winter 2014 issue.

Su Casa Magazine I was interviewed for the article "Positive Energy - the ancient practice of Feng Shui promotes balance in the modern home" by writer Ben Ikenson in the Winter 2014 issue. Click here for the digital issue, then read the Feng Shui article (it's on page 44 in the digital issue, page 42 in the printed version).

Eco Lifestyle and Home Newsletter
I write a monthly Q&A column for this newsletter that focuses on eco-friendly lifestyles.
January 2014: Creating Home Sanctuary with Feng Shui
December 2013: The Feng Shui of Gift Giving
Click here to read all of my columns.


Feng Shui For Real Life Bookstore
Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office --
Secrets For Attracting Wealth, Harmony, and Love
"Move your stuff, change your life." The Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office includes Feng Shui basics, a monthly guide to clutter clearing, hundreds of Feng Shui tips, and success stories. This is the book that will help you learn how to attract wealth, achieve harmony, improve relationships, advance your career, and clear clutter. Highlights include a month-by-month guide to clearing your clutter and a day-by-day calendar of fast fix Feng Shui tips, and links to download free bonus articles. The perfect gift for everyone on your list - clients, colleagues, family, friends - and a great way for real estate agents to say "thank you" and welcome home buyers to their new home.
Voted "Best How-To Book 2010"

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Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office
254 pages
Retail Price: $15.95
Special web price: $12.95
Click here to purchase your signed paperback copy.
Also available at Kindle and iTunes.


Feng Shui Workshops
Feng Shui Home Party
Feng Shui + Friends = Fun
I was overwhelmed with party requests for the 2013 holiday season. If I couldn't get to your home in 2013, please contact me again and we'll schedule your party for early in 2014.

This is your invitation to host a fun and fascinating Feng Shui Home Party. I'll provide an interactive 2-hour Feng Shui afternoon or evening workshop at your home for you and your friends, and you get a free Feng Shui home consultation. Everyone learns practical Feng Shui basics and tips they can take back to their own homes, gets handouts, a copy of my book, and some surprises. A Feng Shui Home Party is a chance to get together with your friends and learn Feng Shui in a relaxed atmosphere, with advice for the homes and apartments in your neighborhood. Your workshop will be customized for your group, with popular topics like "Finding Love with Feng Shui," "10 Ways to Attract Wealth," or Creating Harmony at Home with Feng Shui."

The Feng Shui Home Party is perfect for housewarming parties, bridal showers, holiday get-togethers, or a special "girls night in."

Here's How It Works:
You invite up to nine guests, provide refreshments, and get a Feng Shui consultation for your home. Everyone learns Feng Shui basis, participates hands-on in the host's home consultation, and gets a copy of my book. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers. Guests also get a deep discount if they book their own home consultation.
Click here for details and to schedule your Feng Shui Home Party.


Custom Workshops
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Bring one of my workshops to your city. I will create a custom presentation for your business or group to help you make simple changes to attract wealth, harmony, and love. From keynote speeches, to "munch and learn" workshops, to half-day or full-day seminars, my interactive sessions are full of practical advice, tips, and fun. Feng Shui workshops make great fundraisers because they always sell out.

Here's what people are saying about Carol's workshops --
Carol rocked it with her powerful workshop, and how great to have the entire day to soak it as she covered so much. Everyone really LOVED it! Carol's fresh take on Feng Shui is invigorating yet light enough to actually make changes and see immediate results in a space. Her book is additional reinforcement to her live trainings. Carol makes the process fun and yes, anyone can do this! -- Jennifer Ashton, Jennifer Ashton Interiors

I have enjoyed Carol's lively and informative Feng Shui presentations, and I always leave with new insights and tips that I can immediately put to good use in both my home and office. I’m excited to have Carol create a custom workshop for my group.
-- Lainie Grimmer, CPCC, ACC, Creating Clarity Coaching

I received great feedback about the Creating Home Sanctuary "munch and learn" Feng Shui workshop you gave at our design studio, and what an engaging person you are. You did a terrific job! -- Lisa Samuel, ASID, Samuel Design Group

Thank you for a great presentation! Really great stuff.... you are a whiz. -- Val Romero, Founder, Women Make a Difference

I welcome your referrals. If you know of a group or organization that would be interested in scheduling me as a speaker, e-mail Carol Olmstead or call 1.800.652.9038.


Feng Shui Consulting Services
I work with clients nationwide, either on-site in person, or remote by phone, e-mail, and Skype.

On-Site Consulting
I will visit your home, office, or business and help you rearrange your space, shift energy, and transform your life. On a regular basis, I work with clients in the Northeast (DC Metro Area and Maryland Suburbs, Baltimore, Annapolis, Northern Virginia, New York City, and New Jersey) and the Southwest (Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and Denver). Nationwide, I consult on request throughout the US.

During the consultation I will teach you Feng Shui basics, then we'll go through your space and I'll make suggestions for changing the placement of furniture and objects and dealing with color. We will move what we can at that time and I will leave behind a written step-by-step Feng Shui Makeover Plan of recommendations for you to follow, a ToolKit of information to help you make the remaining changes, and a copy of my award-winning book, the Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office: Secrets For Attracting Wealth, Harmony, and Love. All sessions include 30 days of free Feng Shui coaching to help you continue to make changes and move forward.

Here's what clients are saying about Carol's On-Site Feng Shui Consulting:
You stood here in my family room and said, "Now that the renovations are done and no more fixes are needed, there are no more excuses, it's time to write." And that's what I'm doing. Your consultation was a big factor behind this exciting time for me, and you can tell everyone that I said so.

I am love, love, loving my Feng Shui'd home. I have added red to many of the rooms, like you talked about, and what a difference. Thank you again for coming and doing your magic.
J.P., Executive Coach

Appointments fill up fast, especially on weekends Click here for details and to schedule.


Remote Consulting by Phone and Skype
When an on-site consultation isn't possible, I offer Off-Site and Remote Feng Shui Consulting in the US and internationally for homes, offices, and businesses. There are two options, either Whole House Consultation or the new Room Rescue Package for one room in your home. You will receive advice for re-arranging furniture and accessories, selecting and hanging artwork, choosing the right colors, clutter clearing, re-purposing what you already have.

Here's what clients are saying about Carol's off-site Feng Shui consultations:
Thank you for the advice you provided during our Room Rescue consultation. You are the instrument to help me achieve tranquility and peace of mind.

The floor plan analysis told me everything I need to know. I especially appreciate the Hotline Coaching Package so I can continue to check in with you and ask questions as I move things around and before I make purchases. Loved your suggestion for art in my bedroom.

To schedule your on-site or remote Feng Shui consultation, e-mail Carol Olmstead or call 1.800.652.9038. I welcome your referrals.


From the Feng Shui Store
In the Feng Shui Art Gallery – The Feng Shui Menagerie Collection”
Artist Morgan C. Leshinsky created this original series of high quality giclée prints and note cards to use as Feng Shui cures for specific bagua areas in your home. Called The Feng Shui Menagerie Collection, these prints are modeled on the traditional Chinese zodiac, but with a fresh simplicity that is both contemporary and original.

The Rooster and the Pearl"
"The Rooster and the Pearl" is a powerful Feng Shui Office Cure to cut down on gossip, back stabbing, and office politics.

"Nine Goldfish"
The image of nine fish - eight gold and one black - is a classic Feng Shui symbol for attracting wealth because it represents growth and movement. The single black fish represents protection for your health and career, as well as increased earnings. In an office or business, this image also represents healthy competition in business.

Click here to see all of the art cures offered in the Feng Shui Store.

Purse Hangers
Where do you put your purse? There is a Feng Shui saying that "your purse on the floor means money out the door." You carry your money, credit cards, and checkbook in your purse, and in Feng Shui, putting these on the floor represents disregard for your wealth and income. Plus, scientific studies also show that your purse can be contaminated with numerous bacteria when it comes in contact with the floor. The Feng Shui remedy is a Purse Hanger that lets you hang your purse safely from a table or desk. I have found folding purse hangers that fit neatly in your purse. It's the perfect gift for all the women on your list. The 2" disk opens to a sturdy 3" hanger. I stock them in elegant black and silver, plus I have a few available in assorted colors.
Click here to order a purse hanger for yourself and for your friends at the Feng Shui Store at www.FengShuiForRealLife.com.


Beyond Feng Shui – How to Winterize Your House
As I write this, much of the US is in the deep freeze or recovering from blizzard conditions, so I took notice of the post in the Women & Co. blog about winterizing your home without breaking the bank. Here are some of the tips:

Check your furnace. A plumber or HVAC technician will make certain a heating system has proper ventilation to avoid buildup of carbon monoxide. If you have more than one zone in your home or business, only heat the areas that your family actually uses. Don't build a fire in an empty room, and never use your gas stove or oven as a source for heat.

Dodge drafts. The potential energy savings from reducing drafts in your home can range from 5% to 30% annually. Cold air can get in under the front door, so it's important to maintain the door sweeps on both entry and storm doors. Put weather stripping between the door and jamb and add a draft protector.

Watch the gutters. Inclement weather, storms, and just normal wear and tear can take a toll on your gutters. When the gutter is clogged, water not only spills over the outside edge but also can get between the wood fascia and the flashing causing the ice to push everything apart. Plus, the wood can rot over time allowing water and drafts to further invade the home. Checking and correcting early will result in significant savings.

Dress up the windows. Good-quality window treatments, especially those made of tightly woven fabrics, create an energy-efficient barrier and can help reduce the use of fuels for heating, saving you money. If properly sized and installed, you can turn down the heat, especially in an apartment.

Click here to read more winter proofing suggestions in the post by Suzanne Rust for Women & Co.


F Y I
Do You Want to Use Articles From This E-zine? While articles in the Feng Shui For Real Life E-zine are copyrighted, I encourage you to reprint them and link to my website. I ask only that you credit Carol M. Olmstead as author and include my website address or link to http://www.FengShuiForRealLife.com when you print the article or use it online.

Make Sure You Receive Every Issue of This E-zine. I hate spam, but unfortunately sometimes spam catchers block the words “feng shui.” To ensure that your copy of the Feng Shui For Real Life E-zine does not get caught in your SPAM filters, please add my e-mail address the domains www.constantcontact.com and ui.constantcontact.com to your address book, approved senders list, or white list.

Check the E-zine Archives. If you missed any previous issues of the Feng Shui For Real Life E-zine, you can download them from the “Archives” page on credit Carol M. Olmstead as author and include my website address or link to http://www.FengShuiForRealLife.com.

Need a Space Clearing or House Blessing?
Carol Olmstead is an Ordained Minister specializing in Feng Shui house blessing ceremonies and space clearing. Call 1.800.652.9038 or e-mail Carol for details.

Schedule a Consultation or Workshop. If you would like to set up a home, office, or business consultation, or schedule a customized workshop, contact:
Carol M. Olmstead, FSII Feng Shui Master Practitioner
1.800.652.9038
www.FengShuiForRealLife.com

E-mail Carol Olmstead


Carol M. Olmstead, FSIA, was certified by the Feng Shui Institute of America, and awarded Red Ribbon Professional Status from the International Feng Shui Guild (IFSG) and was elected to the IFSG Governing Board.

Feng Shui For Real Life, LLC, and the Feng Shui For Real Life E-zine serve as a reference and guide for the principles of Feng Shui and as such bear no responsibility for results a client or reader experiences. Individual results may vary based on the client's participation and intent.

©2014, Carol M. Olmstead


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© Copyright 2017, Carol Olmstead