Feng Shui in the Clinic Setting – Part 2
In the first part of this article (IVC, Winter 2013), we talked about how Feng Shui can be used in veterinary practices to enhance the environment as well as interactions with staff, clients and the animals we are entrusted to work with. We will now address some of the traditional cures used in Feng Shui, as well as the colors that can adjust and move energy so the work environment is balanced and allows for optimal productivity.
What is a “cure”?
A Feng Shui cure is an adjustment you can make that positively shifts the energy of your home, property or workplace. When you change the energy of your environment with a cure, you can experience new, positive influences from that environment. Cures put the power of Feng Shui in your hands, and by applying them you can change your life in any area you wish.
There are many “schools” of Feng Shui and this ancient art also can encompass oral traditions. For the purpose of this article, and to simplify the enormous array of cures, we will limit our discussion to reliable and simple methods that can be brought into any veterinary practice.
Mirrors are known as “the aspirin of Feng Shui”. They can be used to draw in as well as reflect energy. When in doubt about which cure to use, the mirror will serve you well.
The mirror can be any shape — square, rectangular, round or octagonal. Octagonal mirrors tend to have the most powerful and positive symbology, and if possible should be the first choice. Square and rectangular mirrors symbolize balance, and round mirrors symbolize oneness and unity.
A mirror can add light or brightness, attract new energy to your space, repel harmful or negative Qi, redirect energy flow, restore a missing space in a room or building, and expand an area to energetically create more space.
An example of where you might use a mirror would be on the front door of your practice. The front door is considered “the mouth of Qi” and sets the tone for the whole practice. If the front door faces an unsightly or negative structure, the mirror will redirect the energy away from your facility when it’s placed using the Mudra, Mantra and intention discussed in Part 1 of this article. If the front door faces something beautiful, peaceful or auspicious, the mirror will bring in that positive energy and allow it to flow smoothly into the practice.
Mirrors may also be placed above desks. This allows for clear and accurate thought, which in the case of receptionists can enhance accuracy. If receptionists are reviewing the charges incurred and prescriptions dispensed, mirrors will greatly eradicate mistakes in these areas. Mirrors above the doctors’ desks help encourage a clear and uninterrupted train of thought when deciding treatment protocols, options and plans. They can help keep doctors on track with appointments and restore calmness between patient visits. Remember, you must put in the intention of what you would like to happen when you place the mirror, and say the Mantra nine times.
If your office is set up with long corridors, and/or if clients tend to come in and walk past the reception desk without checking in, this is usually due to Qi whisking them through, causing confusion and chaos. By placing a mirror at the end of the hall, or on the wall beyond the reception desk, the Qi will be slowed down and allow clients to walk in and see where they need to be, helping to ensure smooth movement through the practice.
Chimes and bells
Sound is very effective for clearing out old and negative energy and bringing in new and positive energy. The most powerful sound cure would be one with a ringing quality such as chimes, bells and gongs. Sound can awaken and alert, stimulate new energy, provide protection, and create harmony, peace and balance.
Wind chimes can be used for a multitude of curing purposes, inside and out. Metal chimes tend to be best because they emit a clear tone, and brass is the most favored metal. However, the beauty of Feng Shui is that what resonates with you is what will work, so if you favor the sound of something other than metal, feel free to use it. If over time you do not gain the result you were looking for, then you may need to re-evaluate your choice. When hanging chimes, the use of a red ribbon/string/thread will give the best results.
Hanging a wind chime outside the front door of your practice will enliven and enhance the energy coming into the facility. The gentle sound of the chimes will help calm an upset client, which in turn calms a patient in distress. The energy of an outside wind chime also brings prosperity into the practice, which can mean payments made at the time services are rendered. Many large animal facilities have trouble collecting payment; putting wind chimes outside the facility can greatly reduce the number of receivable accounts.
Hanging chimes or bells on doors inside the practice will awaken energy and make the staff work optimally even in the most chaotic circumstances. This is particularly important in treatment rooms and pharmacies where we must perform without mistakes.
Brass bells placed on the reception desk and rung after each client leaves can ensure a cleansing of possible negativity as well as a clearing for the next transaction and client when they come through.
Plants and animals
A living cure can be utilized anywhere in a space. This particular cure actually uses the energy or vitality of the living plant, fish, bird, etc.
Plants and flowers are used in Feng Shui to bring color into a space as well as symbolize new life and growth. Rounded leaves are generally best as opposed to pointed leaves. Sick and dying plants should never be used. The most powerful plants and flowers are live ones, and the second best is silk. Dried arrangements are “dead” Qi and should really not be used because they can negatively influence your environment and the people in it. If you must use a dried flower arrangement, just be sure it is not placed on the front door; as we stated earlier, this is the mouth of Qi.
Outside landscaping should incorporate plants and herbs that can help heal ourselves and our patients. Generally, what grows abundantly in the landscape is what we need, so it is not uncommon for catnip to grow well for veterinary practices, dandelions to be prolific for detoxification and lavender to flourish for its healing and calming properties.
Fish are very auspicious and can bring prosperity into the practice. Traditionally, nine goldfish in total – eight gold and one black — will bring the most prosperity. The fish and environment must be healthy and aesthetically pleasing for this cure to be effective. The water must be clear and not murky, and algae levels must be adequate for the tank and not take over and become unsightly. If any fish die, replace them at once.
Birds and other in-clinic animals are also very important and give vitality and energy to the practice. Again, they should be happy and healthy; any signs they are not need to be addressed as soon as possible or negative energy will impact the clinic environment.
The final cure we will touch on is water, which in veterinary practices is sorely lacking. Fountains and waterfalls create new energy flow in the environment. Moving water creates sound and instigates a healthy refreshing release of negative ions. This provides a sense of well-being and makes breathing a bit easier.
Flowing water means flowing money; a fountain placed by the front entryway will allow money to come into your practice. The best fountains are ones in which you can see the flow of water, and the water pools rather than disappearing immediately. Another powerful fountain is one that works like a turning water wheel. Having a small motion-activated fountain in your exam room and reception area will ensure timely movement with appointments.
All these cures will work providing you add your Mantra and Mudra nine times, include your positive intention, and re-evaluate your environment periodically. You may need to adjust and re-adjust your cures as you see and feel the changes in your workplace.
Incorporating some of these Feng Shui cures into your facility will help with all aspects of the veterinary practice, from attracting clients and patients to collecting fees and having a healthier, happier workplace with less employee turnover. In the next issue, we will discuss the Ba-Gua, a cleansing ritual, and more cures for your practice.[sidebar
Color can affect every area of our lives, and opportunities for using it to improve the environment are innumerable. Color can adjust the energy of an entire room, change a mood or activate an emotion and the subconscious mind for success. Color can be used by painting a room or just adding a hint of a particular hue in an object such as a flower, book or painting. When we talk of color, we can use shaded variations to soften, evoke intensity, or add subtly to our lives. In veterinary medicine, there are many important colors you can incorporate into the practice so you may work in harmony with others and help heal your patients.
• GREEN signifies new life, new beginnings, growth, vitality, energy and hope. It is the color of spring and can be used in waiting rooms. Clients come to us for a variety of reasons, ranging from treatment for their animals and education for their care, to emergences and surgery. All these situations need hope and vitality.
• PURPLE is the color of wealth and royalty. It’s the extreme value of red — the Chinese saying “it’s so red it’s purple” means great energy and power. This is an excellent color to put in areas of power such as doctor’s offices, treatment areas and the pharmacy. Purple has a calming and clearing effect. It help keep thinking uncluttered and maintain balance in our thoughts.
• BLUE signifies knowledge, the sky, life and hope and is a very good color to put in exam rooms. Blue promotes the healing process both physically and mentally.
• YELLOW and EARTH TONES are the colors of health, the earth, grounding and connection. They can be used in areas where we gain nourishment, such as kitchens and break rooms. Yellow is also good for the reception area because it keeps our first line of defense grounded, uplifted and connected. Many transaction mistakes can be alleviated if yellow is in place to keep reception staff alert and thinking clearly.
• RED is a very powerful color and offers protection, energy and activity. Too much red can make us ill, so it is best to use it as an accent in areas such as surgery and rehabilitation rooms. If your practice has a space for training or lectures, red will help keep attendees awake, engaged and able to hear the power of whatever is being demonstrated in this room. Generally, red is used on the front door as strong protection from negative influences. Michelle J. Rivera, MT, VDT, is an instructor at the University of Wisconsin and The Healing Oasis Wellness Center, a post-graduate educational institution offering state-approved programs as set forth by the Wisconsin Educational Approval Board. She is also the co-owner of The Healing Oasis Veterinary Hospital, Inc. a holistic veterinary practice offering massage and rehabilitation therapy, chiropractic and Chinese and Western Herbology. Michelle has completed the Chinese Herbal Medicine program from the China Beijing International Acupuncture Training Center, and has been certified in Chinese Medicine by the Wisconsin Institute of Chinese Herbology.