QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What are some good fengshui or energy-positive gifts to give others? I would love some ideas from you.

One of the things I liked about learning feng shui was that it helped me narrow down my gift-giving options. Some occasions require more sophisticated gifts, but when you just need to pick something up for someone, feng shui is a good tool for choosing the right item. Keeping it simple, I have chosen items that you can find in ordinary stores. The following are gift ideas for general occasions:

• Candles. Candles represent the sun, which gives life to nature and offers opportunity, vitality and warmth. Candles also have the energetic ability to burn off negative energy and clear the air. Candles can help its recipient clear the space of lower energies.


• Plants. Especially full, lush and vibrant ones, plants universally are feng shui positive items. They literally are small pieces of nature that when brought into the home create fresh air and fill the space with positive, healthy energy. If you know the person is not good with, or does not like live plants, a quality silk plant still symbolizes growth and brings vitality into the environment.

• Water fountains. When placed appropriately, water represents flow, abundance and new opportunities. Placing a water fountain in the bedroom brings the energy of worry into the space, but when placed in the entrance of the home — so that the water direction is flowing toward the interior of the room — it brings the energy of wealth and prosperity. A water fountain is a good idea only if you know the recipient is the type who will enjoy and maintain it. Keep in mind that stagnant water means stagnant energy.

• Books. Representing wisdom and knowledge, books are a wonderful way to open someone’s mind to something new and exciting. If you know the person has a specific interest, a few books on that topic always will be appreciated.

• Sweet treats. Fruit baskets, wine, chocolates, sweets and the like are excellent gifts, symbolizing your hope that the recipient will have a full, sweet and abundant life.

If you are getting something for a couple for their new home or a wedding present, consider the following: Giving two of something — especially matching items — whether images, lamps, candles, candelabra or vases filled with flowers, fosters a sense of balance and strengthens partnership in the recipients’ environment. When giving a feng shui positive gift, the key is your intention and the symbolism of the gift. You never can go wrong when you go with nature-based items and products, because the very essence of nature is what supports us.

Alice Inoue is the founder and Chief Happiness Officer at Happiness U, a friendly educational establishment at Na Lama Kukui (formerly known as Gentry Pacific Design Center) on Nimitz Highway. At Happiness U you’ll find dozens of inspiring classes all geared toward personal growth, helping you live a more purposeful and ease-filled life.