One of the basic tools for a feng shui practitioner is the bagua map. It’s a nine-part grid depicting the different areas of a space (home, desk, office, what have you) and how they correspond to different areas of life. Think of it as a general blueprint for any feng shui endeavor. To let the positive energy flow, follow the basic guidelines below.
The ideal office is a room of your own with a regular shape (preferably square or rectangle), natural lighting (at least one window), a solid door you can close, and a good position for your desk. One of the great advantages of having your own office is that you can usually perform more decorative Feng Shui adjustments than if you work in a cubicle. Of course, not every company can afford, or desires, to put every employee in his or her own individual space.
1. Consider painting your office blue. "Color has a huge impact on our emotions," says Benko. Bold colors such as reds can excite and promote aggression and anxiety. "Think about why so many fast food restaurants are painted in reds and oranges," she says. Painting an office environment in these colors will make you want to leave early. The best colors for an office, according to Benko, are pale green to inspire creativity, blue to create a sense of calm, or gray for sophistication.
If you work from home, you can apply many of the same principles of feng shui for offices that you would apply in any other work environment. Keep the entrance of your home neat, clean, and free of clutter. The same goes for the entrance to your office room. Even if you never meet clients in person at home, this is an important step in opening up the flow of energy and welcoming positive improvements to your work life.
As the end of year approaches, it's often easy to feel overworked, sluggish, and a little deflated. You might secretly hope that the holiday break was already here, but despite your wishful thinking, the last quarter of the year is also often the busiest. Between holiday parties and social gatherings, you're also expected to tie all your loose ends before the year's end. Cue late nights at the office or working from your sofa or bed after dinner as you try to make it to the finish line.
To ensure harmony and calm your nerves/soothes your temper, play some music around you. Aim for calming melodies or songs without any lyrics. Try to avoid anything too upbeat or energetic as it may distract you if you’re meant to be concentrating on your work. However, different people respond to different music. If you find rock ballads to be soothing, go ahead and play them. If you are running your own business, having soothing music place in the office is good for business and your employees. Alternatively, getting your clients to meet somewhere with pleasant music can ensure higher chances of discussion or deals.
13. Add in an air-purifying plant or two. Offices are notorious for high EMF (electromagnetic field) devices, which sap energy and pollute the air. Air purifying plants will help to increase the oxygen available to your brain (a definite bonus while working, we can all agree) as well as refresh the space overall and keep positive energy levels high.
The Feng Shui Ying Yang symbol pictured above represents the translated meaning of Feng Shui, which is “wind” and “water”. Feng Shui office designs incorporate some common sense and basic design ideas like a clutter free and organized office space. However, Feng Shui goes beyond that to positively influence employees, customers, clients, and guests who visit your office space by allowing for the flow of chi, or life force.
Cerrano also reminds us to think of function above all when planning your home office space. "Remember to take into consideration the function of the office, and become decisive with the type and amount of furniture that is needed. This will save you time, money, and reduce stress," she says. "Invest in a supportive office chair, especially if you plan on sitting for several hours in a day. Experts say moving more during the workday and stretching is the best solution."
Wood elements are usually easy to incorporate into office spaces because desks and other office furniture is readily available in all different types of wood. The wood element represents loyalty and also promotes creativity and inspiration. Your wood element is best positioned in the eastern corner of your office. If you do not have actual wood furniture, you can also use brown or green colored decorations.
"Overall, create an environment that highlights you professionally and personally," recommends Cerrano. "Your selection of décor on a subconscious level is an energetic extension of what you are attracting. For example, when I first started my business, I knew my main clients would be from the New York region, yet I was curious in extending my feng shui consulting firm to reach national and international clientele. To align that intention with the surroundings of my home office, I chose to display an antique world map. Within a short period of time, I began attracting clients beyond the New York border."
There are a few feng shui principles you can follow to bring more energy into your space. "Make sure you have good air circulation," says Cerrano. "When the weather is good, feel free to open up the windows, and if you can't, consider looking into purchasing an air purifier (especially if your home office has no windows). Do your best to avoid locating your home office in the basement." Allowing natural light to penetrate into the office is proven to increase productivity, according to a study from Northwestern Medicine and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. "On that note, if you are able to establish a commanding position that allows you to be supported by a solid wall, see the office doorway with no obstructions, and have a view of the outside, it's a triple win."
When you are designing your office environment, not only should you strive to have a desk setup that is practical for your work purposes, but you should also try to ensure that your desk would create positive energy so that you feel more motivated and energized as you work. Most people spend most of the day sitting at their computer desk, and when you spend several hours sitting in the same position looking at the same desk, it is easy for your morale to slide.
Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese practice that involves arranging your environment in a way that allows the energy (or Chi) to flow smoothly through it. This energy is made up of five elements (Wood, Earth, Fire, Metal, and Water), and its believed that the flow of this energy can have considerable effects on your finances, health, happiness, and personal relationships. Whether you believe that it is the flow of the chi, or that the ancient practice tapped into great design and sense of proportion, the practice can definitely has a positive impact on design.
After you map out the sections, ask yourself which parts of your life and/or business are most important to you or perhaps need some more attention. If there is any specific section you want to focus on in your life, try putting items that promote that related section of the bagua map. For instance, if you want to focus on your family, add a photo of them or place a plant in the “Family & Community” section.