Comprehensive Guide on Feng Shui (Updated for 2017)
This article was last updated on 6th September 2017.
1. What is Feng Shui & What is its Purpose?
Feng Shui is a study of the environmental impact on the lives of human beings. It’s also referred to as the knowledge of how the strategic placement of your possessions can bring success in your life and improve your mental and physical health. For example, it's believed that if your bed is placed directly in line with your bedroom door, then you'll experience anxiety, frustration, and restlessness. There are people who have witnessed instant positive results in their health conditions by just changing the position of their bed - coincidence? Maybe! Maybe not!
According to Feng Shui, the most cherished possessions of your life; your overall health, relationship, financial stability and your worldly accomplishments can be positively or negatively affected by the surroundings you are living in. Bearing your overall well-being at the forefront, Feng Shui aims at striking a perfect balance between your life, external environment, and your surroundings. Feng Shui adjustments ensure people live in harmony with their environment the most convenient and easiest possible way.
Read on to learn more about Feng Shui home rules & Feng Shui home décor - to enhance the quality of your life and to increase the resale value of your property with this complete Feng Shui guide for home.
2. Feng Shui for Living Room
A living room is a high traffic space that entertains guests, brings the family together for a movie, hosts several indoor parties so on and so forth. Keeping this most sought-after space airy, naturally well-lit and clutter free is the first step to set up a desirable Feng Shui foundation for your Living Room.[caption id="attachment_359" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
2.1 Feng Shui Living Room Focal Point
Every living room will possess a striking element that takes the focal point position – it could be an accent wall that flaunts a surprising color, a magnanimous sunburst mirror piece, an oversized wall clock or even a fireplace that just stands out in the living room. When setting up a Feng Shui living room, your home décor options for a focal point can extend to an aquarium, that offers visual relaxation; an indoor waterfall or fountain setting that fills your living room with the soothing sound of moving water and even a cluster of money plant foliage that reinvigorates your space with the plant’s energy like growth, expansion, vitality and new life.[caption id="attachment_360" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
2.2 Feng Shui Living Room Mirror
If your living room is a closed space lacking natural light, extra lighting, mirrors, and the right paint color can transform the space into a Feng Shui living room that is capable of relieving mental stress. The Feng Shui living room mirror placement should be in such strategic locations that the mirrors reflect more light thereby doubling the positive energy light bring in. Extra lighting fixtures could include table lamps, side lamps, and floor lamps in addition to ceiling lights.[caption id="attachment_361" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
If your living room mirrors do reflect pleasant outdoor views like a river, greenery or a vast expanse of hills, this can suggest an abundance of pure energy reflexes. Reflection of trees brings in the energy of growth while the view of scenic mountains brings in the energy of healthy relationship. It is better to pull down the drapes if your living room mirrors reflect clutter, sharp edges of a window or anything that is depressing.[caption id="attachment_362" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
2.3 Feng Shui Colors for Living Room
When choosing Feng Shui colors for living room, understand that these colors set the tone for feelings people to experience in your space. Since a living room is the first threshold between the outside world and your home, Feng Shui derives a lot from nature when it comes to colors and ensures entering your home does not feel unsettled. The best colors for your living room are beige, tan, yellow, green or blue. These colors work great as they are associated with the earth element in the center of the Feng Shui Bagua - the Feng Shui energy map of your home used to analyze the energy levels of a space.
Since the living room is also a social space that needs to flaunt a lively environment, a variety of bright colors such as red, orange and green can be used to create bold statements in the form of accent wall, wall hangings, drapes, furniture accessories and the most enticing home décor accessories of all - the mystical Bokhara rugs.[caption id="attachment_363" align="aligncenter" width="800"] Source: WikiMedia[/caption]
2.4 Feng Shui Art for Living Room
While choosing artwork for a Feng Shui living room, pick serene pictures instead of confusing abstract art, pictures of sadness or violence. Images depicting nature, calm sea, happy faces and galloping horses can elevate the energy levels of your living room. Feng Shui art derives inspiration from nature; such wall arts can transform your living room into a peaceful retreat that can bring about a relaxed aura about it. The picture of galloping horses in the south of your living room is believed to attract the luck of victory.[caption id="attachment_364" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
2.5 Feng Shui Living Room Display for Luck
The best color for a living room in Feng Shui is considered complete when it is adorned with a picture perfect family portrait. Displaying a family portrait in a gold frame in the west brings luck to the family and activates the metal element of your home. The addition of a family portrait in the living room enhances the importance of family members.
2.6 Feng Shui Living Room Furniture
Firstly, the main furniture piece in your living room needs to rest against a firm wall since a free floating main sofa implies a supportless life. The smaller sofas can be placed in front of windows or be free floating in your living room. The L-shaped sofa is not acceptable in the Feng Shui belief since its shape indicates an arrow in the house. Also, this type of furniture instills imbalance and incomplete feeling in one’s life.
Secondly, it is also important not to put your back to the main door when you are seated in your living room as this means you will be subjected to unpleasant surprises and miss out on opportunities in life. Mirrors can come to your rescue if your seating arrangement requires you to sit with your back to the main door – place a mirror in your view to reflect the main door, so you don't miss out on what is happening at the entrance. This mirror must be positioned in such a way that the person at the main door must not be able to see a self-reflection in the living room’s mirror.
Thirdly, avoid cluttering your living room with too many pieces of furniture that can cause the living room to become crowded. The chi, an invisible energy referred to as the “life's breath” or the energy that binds life together, gets stagnant and blocked - this creates obstacles in the path of success for family members.[caption id="attachment_365" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
2.7 Feng Shui Apartment Living Room
Living room decor is a challenging task if you are dealing with a small space. If your apartment is small, the most important prerequisite is to have a bright and open entryway to allow more energy flow to nourish your living space. Since your apartment is small, put in extra effort to keep the entryway as clean as possible, with no clutter like footwear, clothing or excessive stuff lying around in open view. With a clutter-free space, you can sure have good Feng Shui even in a small space.
3. Feng Shui to Attract Greater Wealth
During the ancient times, there was no term for “wealth” in Feng Shui. Now the term “prosperous chi” or “prosperous energy” has evolved, and it’s called the “wealth chi” or “wealth area” of your space. Feng Shui is not about money in particular; it’s actually about success and prosperity. Lately, Feng Shui for money is something that has gained popularity since people have started believing adoption of Feng Shui offers greater wealth.
The primary expectation of individuals who are seeking the aid of Feng Shui is to accrue more wealth. These are people who want to achieve more in life but are not able to pull themselves ahead of their finances. Increasing your wealth is not always about increasing your income, but it can also be the ability to hold on to your wealth by making the right decisions in life. Many people are blessed with the ability to attract massive amounts of wealth, but in reality becoming rich by holding on to their money is never guaranteed.
The concept of Chinese Feng Shui is simple. You have to cheer up the energy of the environment in which you live to benefit yourself. It’s all about the positive energy that keeps people happy, alert and active. Tapping this kind of positive energy just requires you to make use of these specific areas where this energy is present or by activating this place-specific energy by using an object or an element.
3.1 Locate the Money Area in Your Home
Every home has an energy area that can be activated. It is only a matter of knowing where that area is and how to access the energy that is present there. Having said that, do you know which area of your home affects your income the most? Once you locate the wealth area of your home, you can begin to unlock the hidden money in your home and earn more money than you usually do.
Feng Shui experts use a map called “Bagua” to locate areas of your home that corresponds to each area of your life. Out of those nine areas, money and wealth is located in the top left corner of the Bagua which means that the wealth area is located in the left back area of your floor plan. A Feng Shui floor plan can be achieved by careful observation.
3.2 Taking Good Care of Your Wealth Area
The next step is to focus on what lies in the money corner of your home. If you have undesirable places like a bathroom or a laundry room in that corner, then focus on the improvements or alterations you can bring about in that space.
3.3 Enhance the Power by Using Objects
Once you have identified and reviewed your wealth area, you can begin to enhance it for greater fortune. For example, a Feng Shui bedroom tip is to add a plant or a wooden furniture in the back left area of your bedroom. Another Feng Shui bedroom decorating idea for a smaller room is to add a water element in the area such as an aquarium or a water fountain to enrich the area and activate your wealth sector. You can also put a money plant in that area as it is considered to bring in good luck.
4. Feng Shui to Attract Love
Most of us experience emotional downturn at some point in our lives. Feng Shui can help us rekindle love or attract new love by making minor changes in the physical setting of an environment. For example, Feng Shui bedroom for love can help you use positive energies in your bedroom to find love in your life. Below are simple variations that can elevate you from an emotional slump.
4.1 The Power of Pairs
Clear the clutter in your bedroom as it is the most important prerequisite to set-up a Feng Shui foundation. The next step is to infuse romance into the room by placing things in pairs – candles, lamps, pillows, and accessories. This not only brings about a romantic onset but also seems agreeable and inviting to your partner.
4.2 Bed Placement
The best placement for the bed in the bedroom is with its head against the wall. You should do this especially when you want to reattract love in your life. However, you shouldn’t place the bed against two walls in this scenario. This indicates one of you is trapped in the relationship, so it is important for the bed to have equal space on either side to keep it spacey and comfortable to move around.[caption id="attachment_366" align="aligncenter" width="800"] Source: WikiMedia[/caption]
4.3 Feng Shui Mirror Placement in Bedroom
According to Feng Shui bedroom methodology for mirror placement, mirrors should not be placed directly in front of the bed. It's considered unlucky to sleep right across a mirror. Therefore, you should place the mirror on the side of a room. As long as you’re not looking out past your feet and seeing the mirror, any position works for the mirror placement.
5. Feng Shui to Improve Your Existing Relationship
Love and romance are not limited to people who are looking for a soulmate as it plays a vital role in bonding a couple and thereby a family together. However, over time, certain personal habits and sour feelings can spoil relationships. As a result of such negative vibes, not only will the family bond suffer, it ruins one’s mental health as well.
Effective communication is critical to a healthy relationship. The lack of communication in a relationship will often lead to separation or an unhappy marriage. If you feel you and your other half don’t seem to be getting along anymore before you decide that you’ve picked the wrong person or think that you’re destined for an unhappy life, resort to check if the problem lies in your bedroom decor.
For example, have you moved into a new house recently? Or did you notice a lack of communication since the New Year? Or have you rearranged your bedroom or moved to a new room? All these are trustworthy indicators that the underlying problem could be resolved by changing the Feng Shui bedroom design of your room. To determine if the placement of furniture is the cause of restraint in your relationship, you need to determine the right locations where the relationship energy can be maximized by following simple Feng Shui home rules.
- Locate the relationship area in your room - when standing at your front door looking in, the area of focus is on the far left side in the middle section of the front foundation wall and the back foundation wall.
- Enhance the area with the use of Feng Shui elements.
- The element associated with this area is wood and fire can weaken this relationship.
- An oil lamp kept burning is the best remedy, but the drawback with it is the safety hazard especially in a bedroom.
- Your next best option is to place a red carpet or a Persian rug at the entrance of your room.
- You can also add a table lamp with a red shade.
- There are many other minute things to look at and review as well. For example, look around your home and see if you have burned out light bulbs. If you have, replace them at the earliest since this can lead to miscommunication.
- Next, you need to review the color of your kitchen, avoid the color red in your kitchen as this can lead to heated debates and conversation.
- Check if you have pictures of the two of you or your whole family that distract conversation in your bedroom & shift them out of your bedroom.
- According to Feng Shui bedroom rules, solid wood or heavy headboard is very important for the stability of your relationship.
- In a Feng Shui bedroom, pictures should be minimized if they don’t let you relax completely or if they make you feel uneasy.
- If you have a TV in your bedroom, then this would mean that the two of you are focused on your priorities and concerns rather than the communication with each other. Communication needs to be a priority in a relationship and it doesn't have to be all about the bills and obligations after all. It can be the fun talks that lighten your heart.
The simplest solution to a problem in Feng Shui is to get the individuals to be proactive with their problems. In dealing with issues that relate to relationships, how we handle ourselves is important since the situation we perceive ourselves in takes an upper hand over empathy. So you need to take some time to review your relationship habits and make a decision based on your analysis to incorporate some positive habits that can not only improve your relationship but also make your life better.
6. Feng Shui for Your Bedroom
According to Feng Shui, a good bedroom is what promotes harmonious energy. The Feng Shui bedroom tips listed below will help you to create the ultimate Feng Shui bedroom to please both senses and the flow of energy.
6.1 Feng Shui Bedroom Ideas
The most important aspect of a Feng Shui bedroom furniture placement is the actual placement of the bed. It can not only serve as a focal point of the room, but it can also have an impact on many areas of your life including your relationships, your finances, your overall self-confidence and your health.
When your bed is positioned in the right place in your bedroom, you’re likely to be more in control of your life, more productive and more proactive. This will give you a feeling that you’re moving forward in life.
- The first tip is not to have your bed directly in line with the doorway. According to Feng Shui bedroom rule, bed positioning directly in line with the doorway is referred to as the coffin position. People who sleep in the coffin position may begin to develop health problems and may experience an increase in anxiety or frustration. Therefore according to Feng Shui bedroom wisdom, the door should not be in line with your bed.
- Another common Feng Shui mistake that people make is, placing their bed in the gatekeeper position which means that their bed is on the same wall as the door. Such people have difficulty sleeping and they feel tired during the day.
- You should also abstain from shoving your bed into one corner of the room. Most people do this to maximize the space of their room, but in reality, it affects your relationship or wealth, depending on which corner the bed is shoved into.
Many of us experience trouble with sleep at some point in our lives. A bad night’s sleep can be categorized as:
- Taking too long to fall asleep
- Waking too often throughout the night
- Waking too early and not being able to go back to sleep
If any of these three categories describe you, then there are several possible reasons for the problem. Feng Shui bedroom rules dictate that a bedroom is a place of rest and, hence, it should not have too many windows or mirrors. According to Feng Shui bedroom plan, windows should not be too many as too many windows can cause sleep problems. Mirrors reflect sunlight, so in the morning when the sun rises, the mirrors intensify the light. If you have this issue, then it's not all that hard to solve - you just need to invest in some blackout shades. However, make sure the room not too dark for a bedroom that is too dull and gloomy is not a conducive space either.[caption id="attachment_367" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
6.2 Feng Shui Bedroom Layout Plan
Most of us don’t follow a specific layout plan for a bedroom usually because the main furniture in the bedroom becomes immobile due to space constraints or it is not flexible enough merely due to its size and bulkiness. But remember, the layout of your bedroom can affect your relationship, your ability to communicate with your partner, your ability to attract your partner, your sleep, your health, your wealth and other delicate aspects of life. Your bedroom is one of the most important areas in your home in Feng Shui and according to Feng Shui bedroom teachings; the layout affects and reflects your life, goals, and your achievements. Every bedroom has a unique story about individual life and current situation, and we can put ourselves in a better position if we bring our bedroom in alignment with what we want, since Feng Shui bedroom can influence every aspect of your life.
Every bedroom is different, but there are basic principles that can encourage a good night's sleep, improve your relationship or attract a life partner. There are three key components of a bedroom - read on to find out where they fit in a Feng Shui bedroom layout.
Your bed should go in one of the command positions of your bedroom in which you can see your bedroom door, but you’re not in direct line with it.
Your matching nightstand should be on either side of the bed. If you’re single, this creates balance in your life, and if you’re in a relationship, this helps promote equality and balance in the relationship, so it’s not dominated by either one. Decorate the nightstand with matching items including table lamps and other items that bring you joy. You can also put a picture of you and your partner during happy times, or even a pleasant smelling candle can adorn the nightstand.
The dresser should occupy such an area of the room where it doesn't disrupt the flow of energy. You should be able to open your dresser doors conveniently when you're standing in front of them.
If you stay in an apartment that offers a small bedroom, adopt other storage solutions if a dresser doesn't fit in in your room effortlessly or makes it awkward to walk through your space. In a Feng Shui bedroom, the way your room makes you feel is more important than the furniture placement rules.[caption id="attachment_368" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
Everything from plants, mirrors, scents, textures, and materials in the bedroom contribute to the experience that the bedroom offers.
Electronics like TV and computer should not be placed in your bedroom. Also, abstain from placing workout equipment and books in your room as all of these things relate to highly active energy which is not conducive to a peaceful night’s sleep. They will also represent a hard work schedule or highlight the struggle in your relationship or emphasize your career rather than your personal life.
This active energy in the bedroom can disrupt your sleep, cause stress and impact your health. So what is the feeling you get when you first walk into your room? Ideally, a bedroom should be relaxing, peaceful and private where you can escape from the external world.
According to Feng Shui, bedroom colors like light blue or green with accents of pink or red create a perfect balance of yin and yang energy. Everything in a Feng Shui bedroom layout contributes to the energy in the room. Therefore, you should carefully select the items that go into your room to make yourself feel good and peaceful.
6.3 Feng Shui Bedroom Wealth
Since the bedroom is the only place where you spend the majority of your precious private time, it has a powerful influence on every aspect of your life. To bear the fruits of Feng Shui in maximizing your wealth, you ought to learn how to use the Feng Shui elements in everyday life. Specific elements boost financial prosperity and wealth - Feng Shui wealth colors like red, purple and gold are intensely associated with wealth and using these colors in your bedroom can endow you with an abundance of wealth. Since these colors are deep and dramatic, it is best to use them in creative accent pieces like lampshades, candles, pillows and small trinkets instead of using them in abundance.[caption id="attachment_369" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
7. Feng Shui for Kitchen
The kitchen is the only place where all the five elements co-exist in perfect harmony – fire from the stove, water from the sink, earth in the form of granite in the countertop, metal in the form of utensils and wood in the table, door and window frames. All these elements together can add on to the natural energy of a kitchen to nurture the entire family. The following tips can ensure your kitchen’s positive energy is maximized to support your health and well-being.[caption id="attachment_370" align="aligncenter" width="1024"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
- The doors in the kitchen should not directly lead to the front door or the back door which means the chi generated in the kitchen can escape outside.
- A mirror reflecting the burner and doubling them increases wealth.
- Copper utensils attract positive chi.
- Plants and herbs planted along the East and South walls bring prosperity.
- The stove must be away from the sink since the fire energy can get extinguished by the water element.
Avoid letting dishes pile up in your sink, mops, and brooms lying opening in the kitchen and if your laundry room is adjacent to your kitchen, don't let the dirty laundry pile up in that room - all these can stop the generation of Yang, the chi energy of your kitchen.
- The doors of closets and cupboards must always remain closed since the protruding sharp edges interrupt the chi energy.
8. Feng Shui Tips for Dining Room
The family dining room's Feng Shui is vital to activate luck for the family. The ideal location for the dining room is the center or the most interior space in your home. This integral part signifies the heart of your home. When the heart of your home is regularly occupied by the entire family and is filled with togetherness, it creates harmony and prosperity.
Important tips to create a Feng Shui dining room:
- Fix a large mirror on one of the walls of your dining room to double the food on the table - this symbolizes abundance.
- The best shapes for your dining table are square, round, rectangular or Pa Kua shaped - the most auspicious 8-sided table for a family of three generations living together.
Crystals are considered to be Feng Shui morphine. Hang a crystal chandelier above the center of the dining table; since these enchanting elements come from within the earth, they have incredible healing powers - this helps in attracting quality energy, strengthen your personal energy field, clears negative energy from your space & much more.[caption id="attachment_371" align="aligncenter" width="960"] Source: Pixabay[/caption]
- Use fresh flowers on your table to attract lively chi energy.
- To activate the wealth accumulation luck, display a bowl of garlic in the center of your dining table. The garlic cloves could be imitation showpiece.
- Place a Tang Bell at the side of your dining table. By knocking the bell three times before each meal, you can welcome good fortune chi.
9. Feng Shui Bathroom Decor
Traditional Feng Shui proposed the bathroom to be closed off from the main house due to the possibility of Chi loss from the drainage & pipes attached to a bathroom.
With the advent of various advancements like plugs and toilet seats, the Feng Shui approach now is to keep the bathroom outlets to a minimal by closing them when not in use.
One important bathroom Feng Shui tip is repairing leaky faucets, closing the door as well as toilet lids after use, keeping mirrors and windows clean and to replace worn-out toothbrush, torn towels, and shower curtains.
From the Feng Shui perspective, the bathroom represents how you take care of yourself in the world. Another Feng Shui bathroom tip is that the bathroom should be nurturing, supportive, loving and inspirational as it is the only place where it is all about your “me time”.
Following these simple Feng Shui tips, you get your day to a great start that makes you feel like you're in control of your destiny.[caption id="attachment_374" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
- Add items you love to your bathroom. Create a feeling of luxury in your bathroom even if you’re on a budget. Beautiful plush towels that offer visual luxury and a shower curtain that you love will certainly elevate your mood.
- Adding rugs to your bathroom floor is a good idea as rugs offer a luxurious feeling not only to your senses but also to your feet.
- Splurge on personal care products that you love. Make sure that you invest in products that add value and make you look forward to using them. Good smelling toiletries evoke feelings of abundance and make you feel pampered head to toe.
9.1 Feng Shui Bathroom Pictures
The bathroom has a lot of water, the running water, and the water that is reflected in its mirrors, representing water from the five elements of nature - earth, fire, wood, metal & water. Creating a balance between these five elements is one of the vital components of Feng Shui. Since bathrooms have an abundance of water, you can restore its balance by adding the earth elements like gold, yellow and taupe to the wall color or by introducing these colors in towels, rugs, pictures and bathroom accessories. Beautiful pictures of nature framed in gold frames could be a classy pick.[caption id="attachment_376" align="aligncenter" width="640"] Source: Flickr[/caption]
Finally, as Wordsworth has aptly put - "To the solid ground of Nature trusts the mind that builds for aye"; scientific experiments and innovations concerning natural science go through a tedious cycle of trial and error; the sole reason being the insatiable human mind that is always finding ways and means to make terms with nature. Feng Shui is the aspirin that illustrates simple ways to utilize the environment to our benefit - just by altering the ways we perceive our surroundings.
10. 25 Additional Feng Shui Resources
Feng Shui is a study of every minute detail that surrounds us and as a result, it comprises of a vast subject-matter. Here is a list of additional Feng Shui learning material to delve more into this work of art.
1. Wikipedia needs no introduction and in all honesty, this is the first best place to kick-start your Feng Shui knowledge gathering
2. Popular houzz.com experts offer a crash course in Feng Shui
3. This beginner’s guide to Feng Shui by a former freshman at grad school could be a lifesaver if you are creating a home away from home.
4. Another beginner’s guide that further simplifies Feng Shui for outdoor space for summers.
5. Knowing yourself is a vital part of connecting with your environment. Use this guide and play with numbers to unlock the hidden goodness of your surroundings.
6. Here is a quick access to a plethora of Feng Shui articles plus a bonus offer to connect with Feng Shui experts on various social media platforms.
7. If you are active on Twitter, here are Top 10 Feng Shui Masters you can follow to get instant access to valuable tips & suggestions.
8. Looking for a guide to choosing a Feng Shui Practitioner? This masterpiece is definitely a good read.
9. Learn all about bedroom Feng Shui and how to recreate a Feng Shui dream home.
10. Do’s and don’ts to consider while you Feng Shui your bedroom.
11. Aid a good night’s sleep with these simple Feng Shui rules for your bedroom.
12. Flaunt your green thumb by equipping yourself with Feng Shui Q & A for plants in your bedroom.
13. Feng Shui your home with these 9 simple steps.
14. All you need to know about the mystique Feng Shui Bagua map and how to use it.
15. Feng Shui rules that have gained global recognition & practiced worldwide.
16. Feng Shui cures, elements, objects and more discussed by a Feng Shui practitioner.
17. Major principles of Feng Shui and more discussed by Chinese experts.
18. Living in a small space? Worry not, here is all about Feng Shui for the apartment.
19. Here is Feng Shui interior decorating as explained by an expert – an interview excerpt to know more.
20. Feng Shui secrets to attract the most sought after possessions - love and money.
21. Do you know the wealth corner of your home? Find out all about it here.
22. A self-analysis approach to Feng Shui and tips on making the most out of your environment.
23. Magnificent Feng Shui home designs that are worth viewing.
24. Feng Shui in a nutshell & the scientific reasoning behind Feng Shui.
25. If you have by now developed a passionate interest in Feng Shui, it is never too late to acquire new knowledge. This inclusive list of Feng Shui Schools could be your stepping stone.