First-day-of-school resolutions: 1) I will review my notes every night. 2) I will never ever skip class. 3) I will not go out on weekends until my homework is done.
Well, good luck, I say. If any of the above sounds like you, you’re either: A) an absolute keener, B) lying to yourself, or C) a freshman yet to be enlightened by the realities of university life.
Maybe what you need is a Feng Shui (pronounced: fung shway) makeover!
The Chinese believe in cosmic energy called chi. Much like Tai Chi, an exercise where chi is circulated throughout the body, the goal of Feng Shui is to encourage chi to circulate freely around your living space.
If you follow the rules, the results promise a calm and peaceful environment, thus promoting physical and mental health. And hopefully, for those in need, this will lead to better grades.
The first key to Feng Shui is order. Its opposite, clutter, not only blocks the free flow of chi, but it is a reflection of your inner state and does not produce the optimal sleeping and studying atmosphere. Translation: All those pizza boxes, pop cans, dirty clothes, and crumpled pieces of paper have got to go!
Here’s a basic checklist. All bathroom products, (i.e. acne cream, razors, make-up, etc.) and school stuff (pencils, staplers, white-out) must be kept away and out of sight when not in use. Dirty clothes must be put away and shoes must be arranged in the closet. Garbage must be taken out everyday. Books not currently being read must be shelved. Wall decorations cannot be loud (e.g. concert posters are not very Feng Shui friendly).
The idea is to have a room that is easy on the eye, a place where your mind and spirit can relax. Clean lines. No clutter. Everything in your room must have a purpose. If dirty laundry or loose papers are scattered on the floor, your new friend chi will not feel welcome.
The cooler aspects of Feng Shui come with furniture placement. Feng Shui says that from your bed you must be able to see people as they enter the door to your sleeping sanctuary, a.k.a. bedroom.
If not, a mirror must be strategically positioned across from your bed so that you can see the reflection of the door. Superstitious ones take note, in China they also believe that a door placed at the foot of the bed is considered a “death position.” Similarly, a mirror directly at the foot of your bed will drain away fertility.
Proper desk placement is crucial. Its best spot in the room is diagonally opposite and facing the door. In this position you are most receptive to chi. Feng Shui no-no’s include placing your desk with your back to the door or a window, or directly facing a window.
If you have a computer, Feng Shui theory recommends that it be not placed in the bedroom. For those in one-room abodes, this may be impossible. In that case, you could try perhaps to somehow separate your sleeping area and studying area. Let’s say, by putting all your study materials and books in one corner next to your computer. When choosing a desk, consider that rectangular shapes encourage decision and solution making, while oval or round shapes foster creativity and new ideas.
Feng Shui encourages people to surround themselves with nature. Man-made materials such as plastic and metal are considered stagnant; they carry no chi, opt for wood furniture. In dark corners, where chi is blocked, grow a plant to promote its flow.
Lastly, for those relationship-impaired, a bright light such as a candle or lamp placed in the most southwestern corner of a room is said to bring love into your life.
A Chinese proverb says that in life we have: luck, destiny, education, virtue and Feng Shui. Feng Shui-ers believe that we can improve the quality of our lives by concentrating on the last three.
If you already have a Concordia ID, you are most likely on some kind of educational mission. And while virtue is a completely personal thing, only one other thing remains-Feng Shui.
Of course, there are no guarantees that an abundance of chi can boost you onto the Dean’s list. But on the other Feng Shui hand, emptying out the trash, putting your desk here and your bed there certainly won’t lower your GPA either!