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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.
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Carol M. Olmstead
Feng Shui Master Practitioner

Feng Shui Tip For July: Balance the Yin and Yang of Summer
It's summertime in the US, and to paraphrase the old song, the living is not always easy. In Feng Shui, the high temperatures and bright sunshine of summer are associated with hot, yang energy. On the positive side, this makes us want to socialize (margaritas on the patio) and adds passion to our lives (summer romance). But too much Fire can also have the opposite effect, making us feel tired, listless, and just plain burned out. Perhaps that explains why we read "beach books" at this time of year. To balance this strong, yang energy, your focus should be on cooling down your home and office by adding the counter balance of yin, or quieter, energy. For example, one simple way to add yin to your home is by switching to cool blue sheets on your bed. In your office, try turning off the overhead lights and letting the natural daylight light your workplace instead of hard Metal Element energy of fluorescent lights.

Here are some more of my favorite summer tips for balancing the yin and yang energies of summer:
• If your home décor colors are hot, like reds, purples, and oranges, balance them with lighter accents of ice blue or pale green in bedspreads, pillows, or tablecloths and napkins for a calming and cooling effect.
• The harsh, corkscrew energy of a ceiling fan located directly over your bed can cause pain or illness. To balance this effect, hang a crystal from the pull chain to symbolically lessen the cutting force.
• Use your stove occasionally, even if you prefer using a microwave or barbeque grill in hot weather, because an unused stove implies untapped resources or ignored opportunities.
• Your deck or porch is considered part of your home in Feng Shui, so choose high-quality outdoor furniture and keep it clean and in good condition throughout the summer.
• Before you leave your office for summer vacation, give your desk drawer a vacation from clutter by tossing non-usable items, including all those dried-up pens, pencils with worn down erasers, and bent paper clips.
• When you go on vacation your empty house becomes passive, yin energy that can draw negative energies, like burglars. To balance this, set timers to turn on several lights and a radio set to a talk station to create active, yang energy in the house.

More tips for balancing yin and yang can be found in my book, the Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office - Secrets For Attracting Wealth, Harmony, and Love, now among the top 20 Feng Shui books on

Clutter Clinic -- Odd Couple Clutter Clearing
Life is not a sitcom, but sometimes spouses or partners can be like Felix and Oscar of The Odd Couple who can't agree on what's clutter and what's a keeper. My colleague Hazel Thornton, a professional organizer, writes in her Organized for Life Blog that she's often called upon to mediate disputes between "Felix and Oscar" couples about what "stuff" goes where in a home. Often her recommendation is something neither person has considered. Here are some of Hazel's thoughts about clutter counseling where a couple can't agree on what to keep.

If you are Felix, the neat one. Does your partner's clutter make you cringe? Is your spouse sick of hearing you nag? It really helps to have an impartial professional to hear both sides of an issue and give a practical opinion that will work for everyone. Start by working on your own stuff, like your clothes closet, your part of the office, the kitchen or garage, and sometimes the "other" will be inspired by the results and by the fact that you're happier, and start organizing his or her stuff. Figure out what the tangible and intangible cost of clutter is for your partner, whether it's lost time, wasted money, family discord, missed opportunities, or living in C.H.A.O.S. (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome), then demonstrate that the benefits of organizing far outweigh the cost of getting organized.

If you are Oscar, the messy one. Hazel offers an unexpected solution here: if you can usually find what you are looking for, she suggests you might be messy, but organized. That said, could you support your partner by keeping common areas neat if you had a room, or corner, or shelf, of your own to keep as you pleased, with no nagging? Would you be more interested in getting organized if you had a system that was based on your habits and personality and designed to help you keep it that way easily?

Compromise is the key. This is not about changing Felix or Oscar into different people. Hazel suggests designating a spot for Felix to put Oscar's stuff if it starts to become an annoyance. But Felix - and this is important - no nagging. And Oscar, you must make it a point to keep agreed-upon areas clear of your clutter. And no getting resentful if you left something out and Felix put it in your agreed-upon spot.

Success Story – Barbara's Trifecta
Barbara is a longtime friend and colleague who has put a lot of Feng Shui advice into action. I was delighted to receive her recent e-mail with some especially good news related to her wealth and abundance.

Here's what she wrote:
After reading your last wonderful newsletter, I was motivated to "step up" my cleaning up and rearranging my office. It's a small space, but workable. I noticed by looking at the bagua that my Wealth Area was obstructed by a pile of tote bags, recyclable grocery bags, computer bags, etc. I removed the pile from the upper left part of my office by dispersing and putting the various bags in true storage locations like the coat closet, on a high bookcase shelf, and such. Within the week, I had a trifecta of wealth related wonders:

1. A contract that had been put on hold for lack of funding got almost fully restored
2. I was accepted to a prestigious leadership program, a top goal of mine for the year.
3. I won First Place in the local Sister Cities International Poetry Competition for Disabled Writers.

Lots of hard work went into these three things, but opening up my Wealth Area definitely allowed them to flow into my life. Thanks for your ongoing excellent, practical, and educational advice.

Congratulations to Barbara on her well-deserved honors!

Ask the Feng Shui Maven
Q: I'm planning to fence-in an area in the backyard for my dog and wanted to pick the best bagua location. How do I use the bagua for my backyard?
A: Use the bagua for a backyard by standing outside with your back to the house and hold the bagua in front of you. The best bagua location for pets is either the Family Area or the Creativity Area of the bagua. And don't forget it's important to clean up after your dog because if you live in a house surrounded by poop, more poop is what you will attract into you life. You can download a bagua from the Basics section of my website,

Q: We just moved into a new house and love everything except the mirrored closet doors in the master bedroom. I have read this is not considered good Feng Shui, but we can't afford to replace them for a while. Any other options you can suggest?
A: Hang a curtain rod over the mirror and hang some lightweight drapes that match your wall color. Tie back the curtains during the day so the mirrors can reflect light into your room, but keep them closed at night to calm the yang energy of the mirrors while you sleep.

Q: I live in a apartment and each night I put the outgoing trash bag by the front door so that I remember to take it to the trash chute when I leave for work in the morning. Is there a better place to keep it?
A: "Where do I keep the trash?" was the first question I asked my teacher when I started to study Feng Shui more than 15 years ago. I certainly didn't want it in my "Wealth" area, or "Love" area, or "Health" area, or any other area for that matter. His answer was that since we have to have a trashcan somewhere, use the smallest size container you can live with and empty it frequently to keep your chi from getting stuck. It's good that you take out the trash every day, but the front door is the "mouth of chi" where all positive chi enters, so that's not a good place for trash. Try leaving the bag in the trashcan until it's ready to go, and hang a small sign by the front door that says, "remember the trash!"

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

Feng Shui For Real Life Blog
Here's a recent post from the Feng Shui For Real Life Blog:
Fables, Folktales, and Feng Shui
Feng Shui has Chinese roots, but I find Feng Shui-like advice in fables, folktales, and proverbs from other cultures. These tales always seem to have the same theme - advice from a wise man or woman and a very cluttered house.

Click here to read the post and to subscribe to the Feng Shui For Real Life Blog.

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"

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
Custom Workshops
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
Nationwide, I schedule On-Site Feng Shui Consultations for homes, offices, and businesses. 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, Phoenix, and Denver). All consultations include written recommendations, a ToolKit to help you continue to make changes after the session, and a copy of my book, the Feng Shui Quick Guide For Home and Office.

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.

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

Purse Hangers From the Feng Shui Store
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

Beyond Feng Shui – Avoiding Jet Lag
For those of us who fly frequently, we know the feeling - the sleepiness during the day, insomnia at night, poor concentration, confusion, hunger at inappropriate times, and irritability that come with jet lag. This year if you are flying across several time zones for summer vacation, try these ideas from to help you avoid jet lag.
1. Adjust your internal clock. About four days before departure, gradually shift your sleeping and eating times to coincide with those at your destination. Once you arrive, adopt the local time for your daily routine.
2. Opt for overnight flights. You'll have dinner at a normal time and arrive at your destination in the morning or afternoon, which is the best way to replicate your normal schedule.
3. Curtail coffee. For 12 hours before, as well as during, your flight, avoid caffeine, because it can keep you up instead of letting you sleep on the plane.
4. Stay hydrated. Drink at least 8 ounces of water for every hour you're in the air, even if you don't feel thirsty. If you wear contact lenses, clean them thoroughly before your flight, use eye drops in the air, and consider removing your lenses if you nap. In your carry-on pack a bottle of moisturizing lotion, lip balm, and a hydrating spray with essential oils to spritz your face with occasionally.
5. Avoid or limit alcohol in-flight. Cabin air dehydrates you and alcohol makes dehydration worse, plus altitude changes can quicken the effects of alcohol and even worsen symptoms of jet lag.
6. Try to sleep on the plane. This is especially important when you're traveling overnight or flying west to east. If you can't avoid coach, opt for a window seat and bring enough padding to prop yourself up against the wall.
7. Use sleeping pills wisely. An airplane is not the place to try out a pill for the first time, so only take medications you are already familiar with.
8. See if melatonin is for you. Consider taking the nonprescription drug melatonin, which the body uses to set its time clock. Some studies suggest that taking 3 milligrams of fast-release melatonin prior to bedtime for several days after arrival in a new time zone can ease the transition.
9. Get outside. Make sure you get 15 minutes of sunlight, without sunglasses, as soon as possible upon arrival. The effect of sunlight on our circadian rhythms is dramatic. Going without it for a prolonged period of time while on the plane is bad enough, so make it a priority as soon as you arrive.
10. Don't drift off too early. Unless you arrive at your destination at night, don't go to sleep as soon as you reach your hotel. If you're really exhausted from travel, a 20-minute nap could easily become a three-hour nap, which will disrupt your sleep schedule even more.

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 when you print the article or use it online.

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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

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

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.

©2013, Carol M. Olmstead

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© Copyright 2018, Carol Olmstead