How can I calm my space down?

I have just moved from a house in a quiet town to Boston and feel there is just too much energy in my apartment! It has a large living room, high ceilings, a fireplace and a bay window facing the very busy street. My stuff doesn’t fit. I can’t get comfortable here!


A great way to help your transition from a quiet town to the Big City is to reduce the yang in your apartment by adding yin elements and features. A quiet town is yin—slower, quiet, peaceful; the city is yang—busy, bright and fast.

Energy shifts naturally within the environment from quiet to active, cool to warm, shadow to light. Too much or too little of a quality can cause an imbalance. This can be harmonized with Feng Shui by balancing the yin and yang energies of the space.

Your apartment is yang, with the high ceilings, very large living room, and full of stuff as a result of downsizing. The street noise and activity from people and traffic and tall buildings are also yang.


Add yin

Add yin with softness in drapes and sheer curtains on the bay window facing the street. This will soften your space, soften the sound and give you a cozy sense of privacy at night.

Change dimensions

Lower the ceiling height visually, by adding horizontal arrangements of pictures and lower the pictures to eye level. Bring the center of gravity down in the room with strong visual elements below eye level, including the use of lamps instead of overhead lighting.

Create intimacy

Create an intimate conversation group with the furniture centered on the fireplace, rather than the window. If furniture pieces are far away from each other in a large room, you are not invited to be comfortable.

Reduce yang

Too much visual stimulation (with all your stuff) is yang and can be stressful. Purchase a storage cabinet with doors and create extra storage shelving in the closets.

Bring nature into the space

Add plants and a gently flowing fountain to return to nature and divert your attention away from the street to a more soothing atmosphere.