In feng shui you hear a lot about positive and negative chi. But…what is chi anyway?

Basically, all things are comprised of chi or energy. It is the invisible life-force that is present in everything that exists in nature, connecting the yang energy of heaven with the yin energy of earth. Without it nothing would survive.

Because our five senses help us interpret our environment, chi can also be described as what we see, smell, hear, taste and touch.

Feng shui is about tuning into your environment and learning how to balance and enhance the flow of chi. A sensorial experience is lacking when there is an imbalance of chi.

According to the Touch Research Institute, pre-term infants that were massaged experienced a 31 to 47% weight gain over newborns that were not receiving massage therapy. Now, that is a sensorial experience!

Skin is considered our largest sense organ. Nerve endings in the skin transmit sensations to the brain. The sensation of touch helps us to experience our space via physical contact.

An instant calm comes to me through the simple action of petting my cat. Feeling the vibration of her purrs, the softness of her fur, and the heat of her body as she is curled up in my lap brings me such peace. Tapping into my sense of touch during this interaction brings in a harmonious flow of chi.

Most of us love the pampered feeling of freshly laundered sheets against our bodies, the comfort of that perfect bed pillow or the warmth that the softness of a chenille blanket provides on a cold night.

Interestingly enough, however, physical contact is not always necessary to experience touch. We are affected by the mere appearance of certain fabrics such as satin or velvet. Just by having them in our space, we can experience in our minds how they feel.

Through the chi of touch, we can also apply the aspects of yin and yang. A smooth surface represents the metal element and can encourage going within or yin; a course surface represents fire and action and is considered yang.The key is to learn how to balance out all five elements (wood, fire, earth, metal, water) and yin/yang.

Textures can provoke emotions or bring fond memories. Fabrics that invite touching are likely to project the desire to connect on an emotional level. Apply a little feng shui and consider the messages being delivered by your furnishings.

Paying more attention to your tactile experiences will help you to create a space that is comforting and nourishing for you!

Author's Bio: 

Susan Tartaglino is a Red Ribbon Professional Member and Marketing Director of the International Feng Shui Guild.

After training with feng shui master Nancilee Wydra, founder of the Pyramid School of Feng Shui, Susan received her certification through the Feng Shui Institute of America.

Susan was first introduced to the concepts of feng shui during her residency in Hong Kong in the 1980’s. After discovering how influenced people were by their physical environment, Susan was instantly intrigued and eager to learn more about person-place connections.

Becoming a feng shui practitioner was the perfect path for Susan to share her enthusiasm and embrace the power of feng shui to positively affect the lives of others.

Susan enjoys a dedicated meditation and yoga practice, spending healing time with nature in her garden, and hanging out with close friends and her two cats.