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Feedback from your home
Your space has given you some specific language that you can work with, both positive and negative.
--Carole J. Hyder

by Carole J. Hyder

You can tell a lot about someone by being in their home. Just as good friends give each other feedback, your home can provide some informative insights into who you are. Seeing the inside of someone's home is like a dip into their soul.

During my single days, I hung out with a friend who was the ultimate fashion-conscious gal. She never left her apartment without making some kind of style statement. Her hair was always in place, her purse matched her shoes and her jewelry was carefully chosen to accent her outfit. I presumed this fastidious behavior carried over into her apartment. I was speechless when I picked her up one day to discover her place was in total upheaval. Clothes were everywhere and furniture was helter-skelter. I saw her in a new light. Her clothes may have provoked one kind of message, but her home was in direct contradiction.

What I learned is that the true soul is expressed through where you live. Your space will not lie. It reflects the essence and the psychology of you and your home.

Here is an exercise that can help you pull back the curtain on what your space says about you, both positively and negatively. More importantly, it helps you determine what qualities you find admirable and would consider worthy of incorporating into your own life.

First, find one item in your home that you absolutely love-a piece of furniture, artwork, a rug, a wall color, fabric, etc. Write down one-word descriptors of that item-for example, unique, beautiful, elegant, etc. Write as many as you can.

Second, select something in your home that you hate or that just doesn't suit you. Write down one-word descriptors of that item-for example, overbearing, cheap, outdated, doesn't fit, etc. Write down as many as you can.

Now, use the positive words to describe yourself: I am unique, I am beautiful, etc. One by one, go through all the words putting "I am" in front of each one. There is something inside you that vibrates to the qualities of the piece that you cherish. There's a resonance, an identification, a synergy-the item you love is mirroring something in you.

Finally, use the words to describe what you hate or fear about yourself: I hate being worn out; I'm afraid I'm outdated; I hate that I'm broken, etc. You have now identified what feature and qualities you do not like to see within yourself. These may be qualities you have dealt with in the past or are currently experiencing. They may be qualities you fear that you may eventually take on.


Your space has given you some specific language that you can work with, both positive and negative. One can be your mantra and be repeated to yourself on an as-needed basis. The other phrases reflect what you do NOT want to be. Obviously, you want to fill your space with items that support your positive mantra and you'll want to remove or change the items that support the negative one.

This simple exercise opens your eyes to what your home may be saying to you and giving you clues as to who you truly are. Listen to the message you are getting from your environment.

Carole J. Hyder lives in Minneapolis and is the founder of the Wind & Water School of Feng Shui. This essay is an excerpt from her book "Conversations with your home." Used with permission. www.carolehyder.com

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