How can our interior really be a source of well-being? How to arrange its interior so that it soothes us, what is the principle of energy cleaning, how smells can make us happier? Caroline Lamassoure, personal development coach, is also an expert in traditional Feng Shui and explains the link between housing and well-being.
What is your background, how did you become a personal development coach and more particularly an expert in Feng Shui?
After studying geopolitics, I started working in the European aeronautics industry. After 10 years, I could no longer find inspiration in my job, and personal events (my husband and I were literally struggling to have a child) came to profoundly question what I was doing on a daily basis. A skills assessment later, I chose to give myself between 18 and 24 months to 1) train myself in life coaching, 2) leave my company, find my successor and launch my new activity. At the same time, I began to train myself in Feng Shui for my own pleasure… I had no idea at that time that Feng Shui, this discipline so complex and subtle, would become one of the pillars of my professional practice. Thus, after an initial two-year training, I resumed a training in traditional Feng Shui from Badema (www.befengshui.com) who introduced me as much to the art of Feng Shui as to Chinese thought. I loved. I must have been Chinese in another life, it resonated with me so much! And then, after all that, I had two children (infinite gratitude).
What holistic practice has changed your life?
When we train at life coaching for two years, we have the chance to cross many new territories which are all holistic practices (NLP, sophrology, meditation, intuitive guidance, channeling, etc.). But the practice that has truly changed my life is that of Qi Gong. It allowed me to learn to channel, to control my energy (Qi). I, who used to experience great highs and great lows in energy, gradually progressed towards an ability to manage the flow of energy so as to have enough of it all the time (you cannot avoid the highs and lows, but excessive fluctuations can be avoided). The weekly practice of Qi Gong brings me more grounding, serenity, patience, presence, regularity, concentration, but also joy of living and openness of heart. It is clearly a health and wellness practice. Qi Gong has become for me, like Feng Shui, an art of living. I can guarantee you that I feel the difference when I am not practicing!
What do you think is the link between our well-being and our housing?
You can't imagine how much our house looks like us. And that's great news! Because if at some point, you can't move inside yourself, then you have to ask the Master for help and make the changes you need inside "home". . Our home is our second skin, it is the extension of our physical envelope but also of all these subtle bodies that surround us. The higher the vibration of your home, the higher your own vibration will rise. It is therefore necessary to take care of your house as you take care of your body: nothing should be left to chance, let alone messed up. Make your home the laboratory of your well-being by choosing to include the values in which you want to live on a daily basis: light, joie de vivre, love, abundance, serenity, sharing... When the house is fine, everything is fine!
What are the Feng Shui design codes? And the mistakes to avoid?
Your first compass (the compass is our main tool to measure orientations to the nearest degree) is your feelings. So first, if you feel that something is "out of order" or lacking in energy in your home, tune into your home frequency and ask yourself: what do I want to experience when I am at home? What would I like to change right now? Then there are indeed layout recommendations that are useful to everyone: for example, to optimize your chances of properly recharging your batteries, place your headboard against a wall, avoiding being in the energy path between the bedroom door and the window. Your room is a room Yin, that is to say whose energy is rather "feminine" we would say in "Western" language: favor soft colors and materials, rounded and non-aggressive shapes, and ideally no TV or tiled floor (or place mats). In your living room, place your sofa back against a wall with the best perspective to receive light and a view (we call it "the phoenix") clear and inspiring (on a window or a pretty painting for example). Television is not always the happiest prospect... Finally, since teleworking has now entered our daily lives, I recommend that you place your back against the wall, and not face a white wall which depresses and blocks your creativity ! If however you have no choice, dress your wall to make one mood board inspiring and helpful.
How to take advantage of light? Or how to make your home brighter?
My Feng Shui master, Badema, always tells us: "No light, no Qi", and Qi is life! Clear and open the windows to bring in the Qi. I have known in my career two people who did not open their shutters in the morning. Both were depressed...
The dimmers are very useful in order to choose the intensity of the light according to the hours of the day. Also consider mirrors that enlarge the space and reflect light, and finally place sources of indirect light in all dark corners. I dare to use the analogy: put some light on your gray areas… ;-)
What are the benefits of a great "spring cleaning"?
If in our culture, we talk about detoxification of the body at the time of spring, it is no coincidence. The Chinese have a great knowledge of temporal cycles and seasonalities. Spring is in Chinese medicine the season of renewal of energies. : imagine the strength that the little seed must show from the bottom of its ground frozen by the cold of winter, to raise the sap which will allow the young shoot to crack the ground and pierce in the light, then give leaves, and a few weeks later flowers and fruit. After the winter and the peak of energy Yin (inside), we emerge thanks to the light and milder temperatures (beginning of the Yang). It is the same for the house which has known several months of life turned inwards, and which must now restart the engine and clear the way to welcome the energies of the new year (which begins for the Chinese at the beginning of February with their spring). So how you detoxify your liver - the organ of spring par excellence - (based on a cure of black radish, artichoke or birch sap), we detoxify the house with sage, palo santo or a salt cure. And it's crazy good! We have more vitality, tone, mental clarity, a greater appetite for encounters and new relationships. And since creativity is linked to the energy of wood and spring, it's the season for sprouting ideas! So open the windows to welcome new opportunities, and plant the seeds of the projects that will germinate in the months to come. In general, align your posture with the cycles of nature, and your life will be smoother and more fluid.
What is the interest of energy cleaning at home, and what does it consist of?
By starting by emptying the cupboards and drawers of obsolete objects or clothes, you sort out your life, so in your mind, along the way you relieve the body of energy and make room for novelty. Don't be tempted to fill your new spaces too quickly, let life also give you surprises (and gifts). By dint of overfilling our lives (excess of Yang), we no longer know how to welcome the void (Yin), the alliance of the two making it possible to tend towards balance.
Then, the energetic cleansing begins by burning sage (which you will find in specialized stores) in each room in order to raise and dissolve the negative energies. You can also burn palo santo, or incense on hot coals. Let it act for at least half an hour, if possible more. When you feel that the time has come, open the windows wide and accompany the movement of the air currents with intentions: "I free myself from the old and I welcome the new energy with joy". Then, immediately wash your clothes, and take a good shower from head to toe! And if you're tired, don't be surprised, the energy shift is underway!
As for the salt cures, I recommend that you leave them on when you go away for a weekend or even a week: place in each room porcelain bowls filled with coarse salt and let it absorb the negative. When you get home, throw the salt in the toilet without touching it and feel how the atmosphere is lighter!
How to set up your office in telework to stay productive at home?
Over the past couple of years, I've seen a lot of customers “apologize” for taking up space with their telecommuting setup in the family home or apartment. Everyone must indeed find their place, but since we spend about 8 hours a day working, it is essential to take your place, and to give your activity (I am thinking in particular of entrepreneurs) all the place it deserves. We have never seen a CEO sitting at a small desk, in a small corner, of a small room.
The bedroom is not the ideal room because I have already said it, its energy is Yin. But to work, we generally need to be fed with Yang, that is to say with dynamism and interactivity. If however you have no choice, avoid having a view of the bed (at the risk of lacking motivation) and place yourself near a window. Until now, I was not a fan of mobile or wheeled offices, but since the health crisis has taught us (gratitude) to be more agile, so why not. For my part, when I work from home, I slide my desk in front of the window in order to benefit from an unobstructed view and the energy of the city, and put it back against the wall in the evening. Finally, as I said above, favor an unobstructed view in front of you and a wall behind you, this will promote perspective and support.
A trick / a little exercise to do at home for a little well-being after a difficult day?
After a difficult day, or a day of work and intense mental activity, I can only recommend that you take a complete energy shower: that is to say a real shower. The water that you let flow from the top of your skull (where the energy has accumulated during the day) to your toes will allow the dissolution and a better distribution of energies throughout the body. Bringing the energy down into the heart and the body also means walking barefoot on the ground (or even better in fresh grass or sand) to promote anchoring and grounding (the Earth has this ability to absorb and transmute energies), put on sacred or inspirational music to lower blood pressure and raise your heart's vibration, and if all that isn't enough, light a candle for concentration and relaxation, and do a few minutes of heart coherence or meditation. If your family life does not allow you to sit down to meditate or do some yoga postures, at the very least open the windows wide, take a deep breath, take a shower, change clothes and prepare a good healthy and lively meal. !
How do smells affect our emotions?
Lighting a scented candle, floating a few drops of essential oil at home, is setting off on a journey, one of those motionless journeys that connects us to ancestral memories. The olfactory system of the fetus is one of the very first senses to develop, so it is active very early. We all have memories of smells that take us on a journey through space-time, to our grandmother's kitchen when we were children, to a beach in Brittany or to an exotic country visited a few years ago. For me, the smell of freshly cut grass, for example, brings me back to the green paradise of my childhood!
Generally, everything that will stimulate all of our five senses goes in the direction (!) of a better self-knowledge, a greater feeling and a more intimate connection to our deep being, therefore to our emotions. The more we develop this feeling, the more we are in touch with our intimate and personal needs. By doing so, we are better able to take action to meet our needs on our own. Thus we realize that our happiness does not depend on our companion, our leader or our best friend, but on us. It is a virtuous circle that acts positively on our autonomy, our empowerment, but also on the management of our emotions and our relationships.
What are your best everyday tips for reducing stress?
On a daily basis, I listen while working on frequencies of Meditative Mind on Youtube. I'm a fan. When I'm tense, I do stretches, I try to relax the shoulders, jaw and stomach, and I use heart coherence more and more, which allows me to come back to the here and now. By practicing the breath at a precise rhythm, my mind calms down. At night, I combine heart coherence with reiki to fall back to sleep after a children's nightmare. Another trick is to communicate with the Master of the place: when I have to make an important choice, relax or take a step back from a situation, you can be sure that I use my house as a tool of appeasement. Intuitively changing a small piece of furniture, installing a frame that has been waiting for several weeks, tidying up the living room, creating a new atmosphere around the fireplace... everything is good to calm me down because taking action is often the antidote to little bike that circles in our head. And it works ! By taking care of my house, I take care of myself. I am constantly looking for balance, so when there is an imbalance, something must change inside: me (a posture, a thought, a mechanism), and my home (a perspective, a color, an orientation of furniture, etc.). Everything is connected. Everything resonates. Everything converges. And then sometimes, I just need to let off steam to get rid of the stress, so I start a crazy playlist and I dance with my children! The house is for that: to be yourself.
Follow Caroline's advice for a more peaceful life at home on @caroline.lamassoure
Next Feng Shui & Intuition energy retreat from March 18 to 20 in the Basque country (full) and Intuition and kundalini yoga workshop with Pauline Sax - Wednesday March 30 18:30 p.m. / 20:30 p.m. at Villa Gypsy Batignolles - Paris - (a few places left) on the account by @caroline.lamassoure