Over 4,000 years ago the ancient Chinese began developing ways to layout their buildings and rooms in a way that matched their cosmology. This quickly turned into promises of health, good fortune, and happiness. People bought into it because they did feel better in these rooms.
but it wasn’t necessarily because of something cosmic or magical. It was because they created a common sense decorating scheme, one that has rules that can be applied to your bedroom as well.
Reading: How to feng shui your bedroom
Let’s talk about how to apply feng shui to your bedroom in a simple way and get 90% of the benefits with about 10% of the effort.
what is feng shui?
feng shui the ancient art of Chinese geomancy, in which the layout of the rooms in your home is designed in such a way as to create a sense of harmony and balance.
It all started as a spiritual practice related to the “architecture of the invisible forces”, but the auspicious aspect is not emphasized in the contemporary West.
We let the rules inform us, but we focus mainly on the decoration and design parts.
The invisible forces mentioned above are related to the chi (or qi) that flows and unites our homes, rooms, the planet and the universe in general. the flow of chi energy is the life force of everything.
There are many ancient disciplines, such as the school of the form, the school of the compass and others that bring the five elements or the eight cardinal points, respectively. modern western feng shui focuses on the bagua or pa kua symbols of Taoist cosmology.
Anyway, you don’t have to delve into all that to reap the benefits of a more relaxing and harmonious bedroom. you just need to know the basic rules and you can improve the feel of your bedroom quickly.
how to do feng shui in your bedroom
feng shui literally translates to “wind and water.” the idea is that these forces should flow freely and can combine to bring positive benefits, but if they are blocked by poor bedroom layout, everything can become corrupted with negative energy causing illness and bad luck.
what we want to think about is not only the placement of your bedroom furniture in your most important room, but also the directions in which they face and in which you will face your body.
You don’t have to think about it in terms of energy, but how it affects you psychologically. it will make more sense to you if we justify each rule in this way. it’s about balancing the five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal and water.
feng shui bedroom rules
Let’s jump right into the 17 bedroom feng shui tips, explain the logic behind each one, and show through pictures how they work. We will try to organize these bedroom ideas in order of importance.
1. make your bedroom door visible from the bed
There’s a choice for you to make here, based on two schools of thought regarding bed placement. I’m of the opinion that the foot of your bed should always face the opening of your bedroom door.
This creates peace of mind because it adds distance between you and any potential intruders. gives you more reaction time and greater situational awareness.
The other way to do this is to place the bed in the “dominant position”, which means the bed should be positioned perpendicular to the door so that the side of the bed faces the opening to the room.
place your bed this way only if it doesn’t bother you mentally. otherwise, it’s best to place the bed where the door is at your feet, and best if it’s in line with the door. this makes you feel at peace by reducing the sense of threat.
I feel like this works only in much larger rooms, mostly rectangular shaped rooms where the door is at one end of the long orientation and the bed is almost at the other. Also, stay away from bedroom door alternatives, which will destroy the atmosphere completely.
2. have weight symmetry & space
Symmetry means having balance between two sides, like a square or a circle would if you folded them in half or diagonally. But notice I specifically pointed out “weight and space” too. You can’t always achieve symmetry of space but you can balance it out with weight and color.
When we say symmetry, the center line we are concerned with balancing is the middle of your bed. That doesn’t mean you should go shopping for a second side table if you only have one. just keep the same space on both sides of the bed as a general rule.
You can use your dresser to balance the other side. Since one is undoubtedly larger, it will have to be further away from the bed to create the harmony we are looking for.
then again, depending on the color, you can zoom in on the dresser. now think of various types of floor lamps, a chest of drawers, the closet door, and any chairs that are present.
You want symmetry not only on both sides of the bed, but also 360 degrees around the center of the room. the illustrations will help you achieve this.
3. works of art should be calming and relaxing. appropriately placed
First and foremost, any artwork should be calming. Avoid posters from bands and movies and go for prints of paintings.
Abstract art with soothing colors or paintings of serene places work best. this generates positive energy by promoting a relaxing aura in the room you rest in at night. your life force is everything and this balances you.
If you only have one piece of art, don’t put it above the head of your bed. this is fine if you have multiple pieces of art, but your largest wall art should be placed on the solid wall opposite the foot of your bed.
this is for you to see when you wake up to start your day in a calm frame of mind. A feng shui consultant might also say it’s the last thing you see before you go to sleep, but we all know it’s a book or a cell phone these days (which breaks the rules).
4. no electronics except lighting
See also: Clear your clutter with feng shui by karen kingston
You should have zero electronics in your bedroom except lighting. If you can avoid lamps as well, that’s even better. Not all of us have large enough windows pointing in the right directions, though. Why such a strict policy?
Electronics create an unnatural light. digital alarm clocks have flashing lights, among other types of clocks. they all emit electromagnetic fields that can disrupt the flow of chi. they also prevent your bedroom from reaching its natural maximum level of darkness, which can also disrupt your sleep.
5. choose the right window shades
Curtains are good for the same reasons mentioned above in aiding your room to reach maximum darkness, though you don’t want a pure blackout. The slight light of the moon is a positive, though blocking out a streetlight is more important.
Try to choose the right thickness of material to block out most of the light at night and let in sunlight to start waking up naturally as the sun rises.
When it comes to colors, avoid excitable colors like red and depressive colors like black. Those who believe in the magical aspects of feng shui will say to avoid pink because it could create an atmosphere conducive to adventure.
avoid colors that make you feel anxious or moody. color psychology is a real thing. choose a solid, muted, calm color. don’t select a color that closely matches the walls or furniture in your bedroom. a darker or lighter shade of the same color works well.
Finally, for any window that isn’t small, go for floor-to-ceiling curtains or those types of blinds, although curtains are visually better. don’t complicate your room with patterns or too many ruffles and waves in the fabric. keep it simple. your curtains should blend in with the rest of the room, not be a standout feature.
6. keep clutter to a minimum
It feels good to cram a room full of things you love and are familiar with. That tends to help make a space feel like it’s yours exclusively. That’s how “space” becomes “place.” But in a bedroom you want spaciousness with minimal distractions to become engaged with.
Its goal is to reduce excitability and promote relaxation. With this and other best feng shui principles, less is more with that “less” being in the right places and looking in the right directions. clutter-free is the way to be. this includes strange books, pillows, bedside tables, etc.
Clutter blocks the free flow of chi and is psychologically disturbing. When you decorate and design your bedroom, think about the philosophy of minimalism and you will be heading in the right direction.
7. have a solid headboard on your bed
Your bed’s headboard plays a big psychological role in your sense of well-being and safety. You want a solid headboard, versus one that is made of vertical bars or horizontally slatted wood. Basically you don’t want open space.
You want a solid piece of wood behind you. parawood is said to be the best, but I wouldn’t go that far. the headboard can also be upholstered.
I personally suggest avoiding the type with shelving and cubbies. you want a solid surface that nothing can penetrate or hide in to give your mind psychological assurance that all is well while you sleep.
Make sure the headboard matches your comforter and any of the sheet types you choose, especially when it comes to colors and patterns.
8. prefer rounded furniture to sharp corners
You’ll have to decide if this affects you. It doesn’t bother me and I prefer sharp corners, but the idea is that the chi has a more difficult time flowing around corners than it does rounded surfaces.
if you must have these harder corners, do not point these corners towards your bed. they carve “poison arrows” that splice chi into those areas.
in this case, a circular side table is better than a square one, although a square side table with smooth, rounded edges is better than one without decorative edges.
this is about what your mind finds most calm and relaxing. As a man, I prefer the masculine energy of dark wood with sharp edges.
9. choose a natural and dispassionate color palette
When choosing a color for your walls, decorations, and furniture, try sticking to color shades you can find in nature. And most definitely avoid colors like bright reds, oranges, and yellows.
you want less saturated shades of whatever color you choose because you’re trying to avoid excitability.
be careful with color combinations. It’s okay to choose a secondary color to add complexity and make certain elements “pop”, but make sure that the combination of two calming colors doesn’t become an exciting combination.
Promoting romance and other fiery energy emotions is fine, but creating passion in the sense of arousal is against your interests.
10. when possible, accentuate natural light
We touched on this before but it deserves it’s own rule. The light of the moon and the sun are great enhancers of chi flow. They help you regulate your circadian rhythm, melatonin levels, and energy levels throughout the day.
You want the window shades to open and close easily and you want the window to be next to the bed. if the window is behind the bed you will not benefit from the light, and if it is at the foot of your bed it will give you too much light while you sleep.
don’t cover your window with a dresser or your headboard. you want it fully exposed and usable. opening the window at night can allow fresh air and chi to flow through. the cool, fresh air and natural scents throughout the night will leave you breathless and give you a restful night’s sleep.
11. use scented candles, air freshener, & incense
Auspicious scents not only ward off negative energies (make you feel relaxed and comfortable), but they hide nasty scents like a clothes hamper or cat litter box. You can use these scented candle alternatives to compliment the atmosphere you’ve created with your color scheme.
you can walk down the aisle at walmart or target and easily find a matching scent. air freshener companies have already color-coded their cans.
Various types of candles can also bring romance, calm for meditation, provide some fire energy in the room to balance chi, and provide dim lighting as needed. frankincense is a great option if you like those flavors.
12. do not place your bed under a ceiling fan or beam
See also: How to feng shui your nightstand | WellGood
This helps create some complexity is your symmetry balance, forcing you to not physically center everything around your bed in the room.
You’ll find it feels better to have this balance offset, but according to feng shui, having your bed under the center beam of your sloped ceiling creates pressure on the body and the room.
This means that you will be in an area where chi cannot flow freely. the same goes for a ceiling fan, which interrupts the flow of chi. this can also cause you to sit in dry air pockets where the moisture in your nasal passages becomes too dry.
It’s almost better to remove the ceiling fan and opt for one of the ceiling fan alternatives.
13. you don’t have a multipurpose room
This means that your bedroom should be a bedroom and nothing else. You don’t want to cram personal office space in there, a craft table, or anything else that doesn’t aid in sleeping or storing your clothing. Keep it sleep related.
The reason is that, psychologically, you train your mind to be more active in that room than just sleeping and relaxing. In feng shui terms, you start to foster and manifest the wrong energies, creating an imbalance of chi.
14. don’t keep belongings under your bed
It’s tempting to slide big plastic boxes of Christmas decorations under your bed so you don’t have to climb up in the attic or garage. But don’t store anything under your bed, and especially items not related to sleeping and clothing, even if you have skirts or bed skirt alternatives hiding them from view.
This is because you want air to flow under your bed to aid cooling and help keep your innerspring and foam mattresses from molding as your body releases oils and moisture into them (box spring alternatives can also help with this). And also something related to wind and water energies!
15. plants in the bedroom are bad feng shui
Because we read about using plants to balance energy in other rooms, many of us assume plants in the bedroom would be fine, but it’s the opposite. You want the chi slightly flowing but staying passively in the bottom half of the room where your body rests.
the plants create an active flow of energy, cycling it upwards towards the ceiling. You’ll also find it difficult to create symmetry and keep your color scheme complementary with plants in the room.
16. stay away from big mirrors
The problem with big types of mirrors in the bedroom, especially ceiling-to-floor mirrors, are two fold. They make the room seem twice as wide, which throws off all visual balance by duplicating the room.
It is said in feng shui philosophies that mirrors not only attract chi, but also push it in the opposite direction. it creates too much movement, which implies activity, which is the opposite of rest.
17. do not use water as a decorative element
Water doesn’t rest. It is an active force that moves powerfully, disrupting calm energy as it carves a path through the room. That means having the ocean or a river out of your window’s view, having a fish tank, or even paintings of water should not be placed in the room.
While water is said to create wealth and abundance, it counteracts fire in your bedroom feng shui, recharging your libido and vital energies while you sleep, which you know is important for mental health. a beach house theme is fine in your home, but keep it out of the bedroom.
feng shui bedroom design examples
Below, we’ve created some simple bird’s eye view feng shui bedroom design images that illustrate how the same bedroom can do both good and bad.
While you’re at it, ask yourself what rules they’re breaking and see if you can figure it out. we’ll explain why each one is good and bad too, so don’t worry about that. soon, you’ll be the best feng shui expert you know.
feng shui design of bedroom #1
First and foremost, this layout nails the symmetry. Both sides of the room are balanced from left to right.
Top to bottom is close and will carry more weight with a piece of art above the dresser. you could throw a small piece of furniture like a chair in the bottom right to balance the weight of the door on the other side.
It also places the door off the center of the bed, which is nice. you don’t want the door and the bed to be in a straight line. the fact that the foot of the bed points towards the door means that they fulfilled one of the fundamental rules.
The only rule broken with this design is that the head of the bed blocks a window. there aren’t many better options since you can’t easily move the windows around. using a curtain to completely cover that window would be a nice move.
good feng shui design #2
This layout is perfect. The foot of the bed is aimed in the direction of the door and it is furthest from the bed as possible. The symmetry is achieved with the rug and the two nightstands or nightstand alternatives.
And the right types of vanities and artwork are key, and they’re on the opposite side of the room from the bed so the artwork is visible when you pass out and wake up.
Also note that no windows are obstructed by the bed and will not shine directly into the eyes of the sleeper. some artwork on the wall opposite the windows would be nice in this scenario.
feng shui bedroom design #3
This room feels great in terms of balance and symmetry. One problem, though, is the bed avoids covering up any windows, but there’s one problem. The door opening to the room is behind your head, which will produce subconscious fears and paranoia while you try to relax.
another problem is that this room has become a multi-purpose room. might make sense for a teenager or college-age person who needs to study, but the mind will be trained to have constant attention and strain in this room instead of relaxing.
get the feng shui of your bedroom!
Using the rules and examples above, you can probably rearrange your room in less than an hour and have it feeling better than ever. with a little more effort, you can apply a little more of the guide to get it done.
makes a big difference, especially in the quality of your sleep, because your body can relax more because your mind is not on guard throughout the night.
psychologically trusts your design choices and knows that it can respond better to anything that might happen and feels more harmonious overall. feel free to contact a certified feng shui master if you want to go further.
See also: 3 Schools of Feng Shui – Roomhints
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