By now you’ve incorporated feng shui into your sleep routine, and maybe even your workouts. But if your workspace isn’t up to speed on a few basic principles, you might feel it where it hurts. Where? Your productivity.
According to Laura Cerrano, CEO of Feng Shui Manhattan and certified feng shui master, “Organizing your office will help set you on the right foot for running your business. If the energy is chaotic in your office, it can translate to your profession. Everything is interconnected.”
Balancing Yin and Yang to Boost Productivity
With that said, there aren’t hard and fast rules when it comes to organizing your home office. Rather, it’s a matter of assigning purpose and meaning to your space, according to your profession. The colors and elements you incorporate into the room will depend on the line of work you do.
“Someone who’s a personal trainer or a school teacher is going to be very high yang since they’re talking to people all day, unlike someone who’s a meditation instructor and is very yin.” If you employ more yang energy into your work, you may want to decorate with motivational quotes, books and brighter colors. But if you’re someone who uses yin, you’ll want to have more relaxing décor. Here are some more of Cerrano’s feng shui tips on how to organize your home office and channel the right energy for the career you want.
5 Feng Shui Tips to Make Over Your Home Office
1. Choose a rectangular wooden desk.
Cerrano recommends a foldable, multi-tasking desk for the bedroom so you can balance the high energy of the work desk with the calming yin of the bedroom. But if you have a separate room for your home office, a rectangular, wooden desk is best. “Wood is sturdy and relates to being stable and reliable — a characteristic that aligns with your career goal. A rectangle represents concentration and focus,” Cerrano explains. The color of the wood and the shape around the edges of the desk matter, too. A darker wood can make the space feel heavier and make work feel more challenging, especially if light-colored furniture fills the rest of the room. Also, opt for furniture with rounded edges, which promotes sheng energy. Unlike sharp edges (sha energy), sheng energy helps promote the flow of good chi and positivity, Cerrano says.
2. Take command of your space.
The most commanding position for a desk is when you can see who is entering or exiting the door, but it shouldn’t be completely aligned with the doorway. A desk directly aligned with the doorway symbolizes that your career may be on its way out. “Your desk should be up against a sturdy wall to make it feel supported and close to natural light from a window,” Cerrano says. Don’t have that luxury? Use full-spectrum light bulbs on tall lamps because they appear the most like natural light.
3. Fill drawers with purposeful things.
Clutter can mean different things to different people. A drawer full of pencils and pens might be unnecessary for a lawyer, but for an architect or an artist, they’re essential. When it comes to evaluating what you should throw out, ask yourself, “Am I someone who needs a ton of highlighters? How many notepads and folders do I need?”, Cerrano says. Then, take your organizing a step further and designate the drawers in your desk for contracts, payments and drafts you need to save.
4. Use art wisely.
Water represents movement, and that can be a good thing for both your finances and career. To help drive this home, some feng shui consultants recommend placing a small fountain by your desk or somewhere in your home office. Keep in mind most feng shui experts advise against running water in the bedroom, but you can test things out (be sure to turn it off at night). Or, try pictures. “Pick an image of a stream or a river,” Cerrano suggests. Photos of animals also generate good career energy, she adds. “You can have a painting or an image of whales, dolphins and birds in flight or by the water. You should also hang photos of places you’ve traveled to or photos of things that help define who you are,” Cerrano says.
However, avoid hanging things up on your wall just for the sake of feng shui. “You should hang photos that share strong characteristics about your personality and make you happy or feel inspired,” Cerrano says. This brings you to a place of authenticity and helps you understand who you are — both necessary for a strong career foundation.
5. Grow plants to grow your business.
Plants provide strong career feng shui for several reasons. For one, they’re green, which is the color of wealth, Cerrano says. (Touches of purple, pale green, blue-green and pale gold are also good colors to have.) Plus, honing your green thumb can have air-purifying benefits, and serve as a metaphor for movement in your career. “I like Boston ferns, snake plants and peace lilies. English ivy is also good, but you have to make sure you add a plant stand so that the vine grows upward and not downward. It’s a good symbol of your career growing upward,” Cerrano notes.
While feng shui can help boost productivity and clarity, remember that it’s not magic. Cerrano says, “If you want to be successful, it takes action. Ask yourself what have you done to make progress in your goals. Otherwise, the work you put into feng shui is meaningless.”