Is your home office a spare room full of whatever doesn”t fit anywhere else? Does your daily commute end with winding your way through a corporate maze to your own crowded cubicle? Do you sit down at your desk and push piles of papers aside to create a little workspace?
If this sounds familiar, and you know that your productivity is suffering, maybe you want to try a little feng shui in your workspace.
Feng shui (pronounced “fung schway”) is the ancient art of placement and design that balances and enhances the energy flow in an environment. This can be placement of a home on a piece of property, location of an office building on a city block, orientation of rooms in a house, arrangement of furniture in a room or objects on a desk.
For a complete feng shui evaluation, you need to consult with a professional. It”s far too complex to address completely in an article. I”ll just give you a few examples of techniques you can try so you can see if feng shui is for you.
In any situation, there will obviously be believers and non-believers, and this is true of co-workers as well as spouses. To effect change in the corporate environment or at home, you have to start with yourself, and realistically this may be all you can accomplish.
At the center of this belief system is a powerful reality that you need to be able to embrace: There is an energy flow that BRINGS abundance to all of life. Using feng shui to attract things to you means removing blockages and enhancing this natural flow. This doesn”t mean you only need to move the furniture around and then sit back and wait for the money to arrive; it removes the suffering and struggle and leaves you working from a place of peace at the center of your being.
Clutter is stagnant energy that leaves no room for growth. The tendency to save things because “someday you might need them” indicates a lack of belief in the energy flow that brings abundance to you. Your message to the universe is that you don”t trust that it will provide for you. The flow stops.
This energy flow, called ch”i (“chee” enters through the front door of any building or room and is then dispersed. It also enters through windows. It exits through doors and windows too. During the day, it enters through windows, at night it exits, hence a reason to close curtains. Think of it as air or water flow; it”s like that.
If you want more opportunity in your work environment, make sure the path to the door is as wide as the door. This goes for paths, hallways and outer rooms. The easiest way to attract ch”i is to get rid of clutter; no toys scattered on paths to the house, no shoes strewn in the middle of the hallway or piles of boxes between the world and your desk.
If the ch”i entering through your door immediately meets a wall, you can compensate with mirrors. If the ch”i enters and there are windows directly opposite, it enters and leaves again quickly. A partition or some other object, or even curtains, can slow or diffuse the flow.
Next is the orientation of your desk within the office space, and placement of objects in the room and on the desk. When you enter your office, stop and face the interior. Divide your office into 9 equal-sized areas. Each area represents an area of your life, and also relates to a color and an element. The front three, from left to right, are skills/knowledge/wisdom; career/life path; and helpful people/travel. The middle three are family/foundation; health; and creativity/children. The back three are abundance/prosperity; reputation/fame; and relationships/love/marriage.
The idea is to locate your desk, if possible, in the area “where you work”. Are you an artist or an teacher? A travel agent or a marriage counselor? A banker or a work at home entrepreneur? A few rules of thumb:
1) Never put your desk directly in front of the door, and don”t orient it so your back is to the door. Either face the door directly or so you can see the door without turning.
2) Place things in each section of the room that enhance the meaning of that area of your life. For example, the obvious choice for the knowledge area is books relating to your work. A not so obvious addition would be an empty vessel, symbolizing openness to new knowledge. In the career area might be milestones of your career such as diplomas or awards, or business cards and brochures, etc. Your phone, rolodex, and photo of your mentor might be in the helpful people area.
Family would be photos, or maybe religious objects if your foundation is your faith; the health area stays open and uncluttered; and something you”ve created is placed in the creativity area.
Water is a universal symbol of abundance, so an aquarium, fountain, or even a picture of a waterfall would be appropriate. The reputation area would contain whatever you would like to be known for. The relationship area would contain momentos of loved ones, or symbols of love. You can put pairs of objects in this area: two roses, two photos or photos of pairs of friends.
3) Do the same with the arrangement of objects on your desk. Use the same areas, but keep it simple. Balance out the presence of electronic equipment with a plant or bouquet.
You can also enhance a particular area with color. There are colors that soothe (blue/greens stimulate (reds invite collaboration and social gatherings (oranges and browns enhance mental activity (yellows suggest oppulence and abundance (purples, maroons, reds). There is an element and color associated with each area also, but that is way too much to get into here.
Bottom line, though, is that your office has to feel good to YOU. Follow your instincts and you”ll create a more productive, abundant space.