Feng shui is an ancient Chinese system of arranging your environment for a favorable flow of energy, also called qi. From how to arrange furniture to the right colors, follow these easy tips to create an atmosphere of zen in your child's bedroom.
First things first, let’s talk bed placement. Feng shui expert and holistic interior architect Anjie Cho says there is an ideal spot, called the commanding position, to place your child's bed to promote restful sleep.
"It's best to have the bed positioned so that you can see the door with the headboard against the far wall. You don’t want the kid to be directly in front of the door. Instead, across the room, diagonal from the door, is typically the most ideal position," she says.
Cho explains that the commanding position helps with sleep issues because it puts the child in command of their room. "They can see who's coming in and not be put in a position in which they can be surprised," she says.
In addition, it is important that the bed is not directly under a window.
Cho says bunk beds are not ideal because the child will sleep too close to the ceiling and their energy will be compressed. If you are short on space or your kids really want bunk beds, feng shui expert Francoise Courty-Dan says to keep these feng shui tips in mind.
"Bunk beds can be fun and save space, and should only be used if the kids are happy and comfortable sleeping in them and, more importantly, if they sleep well and their health is good," she says. "What some kids may perceive as a safe den may feel claustrophobic to others."
"Choose wood over metal and make sure the beds are stable and sturdy. Paint the overhead part of the lower bed in a nice color to create the impression of a bigger space, and hang some mobiles to allow qi circulation," Courty-Dan suggests.
"A youngster's perfect bedroom should have the right balance of yin and yang energy, which means it should not be too dark or too bright and be in harmony with the child's personal taste and personality," says Courty-Dan. "For walls, avoid bright colors, such as neon bright, or busy wallpaper, because it could overstimulate the child, affect her/his central nervous system and disrupt her/his sleep."
Cho suggests pastel blues, greens or pinks to create a calming atmosphere. "Those particular colors are healing and soothing in the feng shui world," she says.
Can your child use a boost of self-confidence? Try placing a full-length mirror in their room. "For a child who could benefit from a confidence boost, make sure that they have a full-length mirror in their room and that the mirror is hung at their eye level," says Laura Benko, "the city's best feng shui consultant" according to New York magazine. "If the mirror is too high, they will feel like they can never measure up."
In addition, she says to fill their room with images that truly uplift and support them. "For example, a picture of a teen pop star is not a good idea if the singer's message is superficial. A child's best artwork proudly displayed in a frame or a photograph that represents a special moment with loved ones will be much more comforting and supportive," says Benko.
"Encourage kids to put their toys away at the end of the day because being surrounded by a messy playground of symbolic activity is not conducive to a peaceful night’s sleep," says Benko, who says a clutter-free room not only helps sleep but also is important if they also do homework in their room.
"A simple solution is to make sure everything has a place. Use lots of covered boxes or baskets so you and your child can do a quick, clean sweep at day's end."
Get your child involved in picking art to hang in their room that depicts their interests, whether sports or another hobby, as well as their own artwork. If your child has a hard time sleeping, however, Benko says to avoid artwork with fast-moving imagery, like crashing waves or transportation motifs.
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