by Kathryn Weber
Being married is wonderful when it’s wonderful. But when it’s not, staying married when you’re unhappy can be a certain kind of misery, and divorce can often feel like the only answer. Yet even when a divorce is the best option, there’s still a feeling of loss, disappointment and, many times, failure.
And it’s in our homes, and in those despondent feelings, that we can often become stuck.
One of the best aspects of feng shui is the ability to help you cope with loss, trauma, and the emotional turmoil that can naturally occur in life, but that can seem especially painful after divorce. It’s often more difficult to re-adjust after divorce than it is an emotional trauma because a home is a shared space for couples.
The house often quite literally symbolizes the couple, making the space around you feel lonelier and filled with hurt – and can keep you feeling frozen and unable to move on.
When your partner in life is gone, your home may feel especially empty, or you may move after divorce and then feel the pain of “singleness” in your new space. No matter whether you stay in the home you shared with your spouse or if you moved on, feng shui can help you heal and begin moving forward again in both your home and your life.
Use 7 these tips to create a supportive environment that helps you to let go of the past and move healthfully, happily, and wholly, into the future.
#1. See your home in a new way to reset your heart and eyes.
In feng shui, just as in love, the heart and eyes are connected. We fall in love with someone through our eyes and the feeling goes straight to our hearts. After divorce, the symbols and items in our homes can be powerful reminders to our eyes of the loss to our hearts.
Because you’re starting over, it’s important to help your heart “re-set” itself by taking the visual reminders of our former relationship away or moving them into different areas.
Start by taking down all the artwork in your home and moving it into a new position.
This helps you re-awaken your eyes and heart to a new way of feeling and seeing again. Take out old photographs of you as a couple so you don’t see your “then” self. Next, go out and take photos of yourself with friends as you are now and put those into frames.
#2. It’s important that you see yourself in your new life.
Have a friend take candid photos of you doing things you like such as walking your dog, doing yoga, or cooking with friends. Posed photographs can sometimes feel hollow, but when you see yourself in your life doing things you enjoy, it can be very validating of your new life.
#3. Replace old symbols.
Just as a house often symbolizes marriage and the couple who lived there, so can other items, like bedroom furniture, or a favorite chair or desk. Start in the bedroom and consider swapping out bedroom furniture with new replacements. If possible, replace the mattress.
The bed is the single most significant symbol of a marital relationship, so the actual bed you slept on should be replaced or changed.
At the very least, have the mattress sanitized or bring it outside to spend at least four hours in bright sunlight. If you can’t replace the bedroom furniture, try repainting it or swapping out lamps and accessories with something new. Look at furniture or decorating items that most represent your former spouse and remove or replace them.
You are given permission….
To let go….
Sometimes we hold on to our old marriage items and symbols because they’re….still perfectly good, brand new, too expensive to throw away, or it will hurt to get rid of it. A wedding album and a wedding dress can actually be thrown away. Your old spouse’s favorite chair can be donated. Let go of wedding gifts and other wedding items. If it makes you feel better, keep one photograph but let the rest go. Or, box them all up and remove them from the premises.
To do as you like…
It’s important to replace old patterns of behavior by introducing new habits and patterns. That means you also have permission to do what you want when you want. Create a new schedule and watch those period TV shows you liked so much but didn’t get to see on the weekends. Don’t adhere to old schedules or activities, create new ones. Instead of going to the lake on Saturdays, take a day trip to new locales in your area.
#4. Build in new sources of support.
Look for places and people who support you and your quest to begin anew. This can be anyone from friends you go out with to finding a therapist, a singles group, or a trainer to help you create a personalized workout. Think about professional help too.
This can be a financial adviser, a better attorney, or even a feng shui consultant who can help you clear your space of old energies and re-energize your home. Bodywork like massage, network chiropractic (a specialized form of chiropractic that releases old traumas), BodyTalk or Reiki can also be helpful. Activate the northwest corner of your home with something metallic or with crystals and gems to bring those sources of support into your life!
#5. Love on yourself.
Treat yourself the way you’d treat a good friend. Buy some of your favorite things, such as scented candles, or a specialty coffee. Set up a schedule of regular pampering with manicures or pedicures and do things that make you feel taken care of and loved, and that maybe you didn’t do for yourself when you were married.
#6. Love on your house.
Start seeing your home as your space and not just as the space that someone left or that you’re alone in. Buy your home flowers every week to energize it and introduce fresh, vibrant energy. Clean it regularly or hire a new housekeeper to clean it for you. Attend to any maintenance issues. When you take care of your home, you are taking care of yourself.
While it might be tempting to avoid your house, don’t. Put a little extra time and TLC into your home. Find things to change or redecorate that bring you joy. This is a hopeful sign and symbolizes you moving on and bringing renewed energy to your home. Consider changing the color of your front door, swapping out light fixtures, or repainting a room. This puts a personal energy stamp on your home that says this space is your space, and that you enjoy it and are moving forward with hope and expectation.
#7. See your life and your home grow.
Create a fresh, growing start by adding new flowers or plants at the front door. Buy a pretty plant to set in a window indoors and pot up new plants for your patio. Try adding a kitchen garden with herbs. Plants are one of the best ways to add new energy to your home and to your life. Seeing their growing energy and having your hands in dirt is nature’s way of showing us new life, a fresh start, and renewal.