Our environment is fundamental to our general enjoyment and disposition. That’s why the Chinese geomantic concept of fengshui has dominated even Western cultures, where stress is abundant. Due to the fact that stress is usually as a result of work, it’s becomes especially important to apply the principles of fengshui to our home office.
Many of these principles can be applied to a commercial office also, but may not be as easily implemented. Since your home office is located, well, at home, its proximity to the areas you dedicate to rest and relaxation means it absolutely needs to be filled with good vibes for your mental well-being.
There are a number of fengshui guidelines to take into account when furnishing and decorating your home office.
De-clutter to De-stress
You know that saying, “A cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind?” Well, it’s absolutely on point. It’s nearly impossible to focus when our surroundings are filled with clutter. That’s why implementing a decent storage system in your home office is crucial.
Tasteful and sparsely filled bookshelves help make this possible. Low-sitting bookshelves can be just as useful as high bookshelves, and are less imposing, allowing you to think more clearly. Bookshelves that are built into the wall are also useful for freeing up space.
Invest in a desk with drawers to create even more storage space. Ottomans are also a lovely touch that double as storage space and a sitting space. It’s equally important for your office fengshui to be efficient as it is for it to be comfortable.
Bring in Nature
The biggest mistake many commercial offices make is creating a space that feels like a workshop more than an environment for progress and success. Fluorescent lighting, lack of windows – these things can contribute to serious mental strain. It’s important for the human body to feel close to, or in touch with, nature at all times. Too much distance from the outdoors causes us to go stir-crazy. For that reason, natural light is essential to balancing your office fengshui. Make sure there are large windows in the area you place your home office.
Keep your home office close to an exit as well, so as to encourage outdoor breaks between tasks. Also bring in some greenery. Potted plants go a long way toward cleansing the air in your home office and lending a positive aura.
Place a potted plant in the corner and maybe line your window sill with some succulents. They’re easy to care for, and aesthetically pleasing.
Mind Your Positioning
The biggest factor in fengshui is positioning. For optimal office fengshui, try to designate a south-eastern section of your home as your office space. Similarly, always keep the south-eastern section of the office space itself positive and clutter-free.
The Chinese believe that the Southeast area is responsible for “prosperity and abundance”. It ensures success in your life’s endeavors.
In addition to general positioning, it’s equally important for your office fengshui to properly position the objects within the room.
Mind the placement of chairs. The chair in which you work should never be unsupported, and should always have some sort of fixture behind it (a bookshelf, cabinet, wall). This lends an air of security and solidity.
Similarly, chairs should never be directly facing each other as that suggests confrontation. Place chairs that are facing each other at a slight angle for a more amiable atmosphere.
Furthermore, office fengshui principles dictate that you should always have an unobstructed view of the doorway, but you should never face it directly. This will also give visitors into your home office a more welcome feeling, and prevent you from being distracted by outside goings-on.
Your back should not be to the door either, but if it must, place a mirror across from you to keep your view of it open. Mirrors also give the room an illusion of largeness, making it look bigger and more open than it may be.
Pick the Right Colors
The best part: your home office’s color scheme. Naturally, you’ll want to avoid distracting neon shades and settle for less distracting ones in a space that requires your utmost focus. Fengshui assigns different meanings and benefits to different colors.
- Red, orange, yellow & other warm tones: Best for creative individuals. Suggests passion, warmth, high-energy.
- Blue, green, and beige:Inspires logic, stability, ease. Great for programmers, scientists, engineers, mathematicians.
- Wood:Wood or bamboo finishings add warmth to any room, and symbolize growth and prosperity.
- Metallic: Grays, whites, and metallic shades are bright and enlightening. They stand for precision and efficiency.
Office Feng Shui Final Touches
The ultimate goal of fengshui is balance. Not just work-life balance in this case, but aesthetic balance. Find touches that complement each other. For example, if you get a lot of cool natural light, add some warm wooden touches to your home office (like a wooden desk or chair).
If you have wood-paneled walls, maybe consider a more metallic desk. Feng shui does not insist upon perfect decorative unity. Spicing up the décor or adding in some personal touches, like abstract sculptures, will go a long way toward bringing positivity to your workspace.
And, positivity is the end goal here. Even when choosing artwork for your home office, steer clear of artwork portraying dark or violent themes. Geometric shapes instill focus, while bright colors deliver motivation. From ceiling to floor, there are important touches that help your office fengshui tie together neatly – hopefully making you more productive in the end.