Freedom... mental and physical clutter
We have all become familiar with the concept of feng shui, the harmonisation of our surroundings to positively affect energy patterns. Liza Evans, an international feng shui consultant, shows how you can use it for driving:
What is feng shui?
Feng shui is the ancient chinese art of balancing and harmonizing our environment, using the earth's forces to enhance sheng chi (positive energy) so that our immediate internal and external surroundings can be as supportive as possible. There is no "hocus-pocus" about feng shui and it is not necessary to be a believer to achieve positive results.
In feng shui the compass represents eight principal aspects of life and we need balance in each of these areas. By making changes to your environment it is possible to improve the corresponding area of your life:
- Career and life's path
- Family and health
- Recognition and fame
- Children and creativity
- Education and knowledge
- Wealth and prosperity
- Relationships and marriage
- Helpful people and mentors
Feng shui your car
You can adapt feng shui principles for your car by positioning everyday driving accessories in the appropriate points to actively support the corresponding areas. In feng shui our homes and cars are seen as an extension of our lives and personalities, therefore it is important that your rental car symbolises the image you want to portray - in terms of style and content.
- Clear your clutter so that the "chi" can circulate freely. Keeping your car clutter-free will help keep the energy inside as light and airy as possible.
- and outside of your car you will attract the chi and have a more comfortable ride.
- Windows are the eyes of a vehicle; by keeping your car windows sparkling clean you will both ensure good vision and be seen more clearly.
- As you drive, intermittently play calming music to help uplift your spirits and energise the chi.
- At the start of a journey spray a mixture of water and rosemary in the car to keep you alert and your head clear (7 drops rosemary to 10ml water).
- Feng shui is about "going with the flow" so make yourself as comfortable as possible, being sure of your route, well-seated and sure that your passengers have refreshments and something to occupy them.
- To energise the area associated with mentors and helpful friends, place a picture or quote from someone you admire in your glove compartment.
- Activate the career area of your car by carrying drinks for your journey.
- Energise the knowledge area by keeping maps in the driver's door pocket.
- Keeping a first aid box in the pocket behind the drivers seat will help to energise the area associated with family and health.
- You can energise your wealth and prosperity by keeping spare change for parking meters in the center console of your car.
- A flashlight stored in the trunk of your car will help to activate the fame and recognition part of your life. Alternatively invest in a reading light for night-time travelling.
- To help create a good relationship with your fellow passengers ensure there is music to suit all tastes. A car blanket will also help to keep the passengers warm and cosy during the winter/late nights.
- To activate the children and creativity area, keep travel games and books in the pocket behind the front passenger seat.
Liza Evans is a feng shui consultant and interior designer who writes and broadcasts frequently on the subject. A registered consultant with the feng shui society and founder of international feng shui day (14 oct), she is also feng shui expert for GMTV and QVC's web sites.
Sort your car out western style
There is a less spiritual and more western concept, faintly allied to feng shui, called ergonomics; the "science of ease of use" might be its best description. In countries where cars play a huge part in people's lives, car designers incorporate as many labour-saving devices as possible - from cruise control and automatic transmission to ergonomic seating and holders for soda cans. You can make your own adjustments, which may be simple, but may reduce stress:
- Keep the map in the same place all the time, along with a phrase book (if necessary) and a guide book for quick reference.
- Have necessities such as sunglasses, water, tissues etc as near to the driver as possible.
- Keep all the car documentation in the glove pocket, easily reachable if something goes wrong.
- Keep a flash-light easily accessible.