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Feng Shui your Office

Feng Shui is the relationship between our lives and our surroundings. Good Feng Shui allows energy, or 'chi' to flow smoothly throughout our environment. When Chi is stagnant, obstructed or moving too quickly, the imbalance is believed to lead to things like illness, financial problems and arguments. Many of us spend most of our time in an office or home office. They're often cramped, cluttered, uninspiring, and lacking in breathable oxygen, which isn't the ideal condition for a room where so much needs to be accomplished. Good Feng Shui promotes the health, happiness and hard work of office staff.

1404484_28060272 The image that always springs to mind when I hear the words 'Feng Shui'

1. Clutter

Unnecessary clutter causes stagnant energy, and promotes chaos and confusion. Get rid of everything you don't need. Old catalogues and papers can be recycled. Loose sheets can be filed away. If you need to keep it, find a place for it. Treat files with respect - they are the past, present and future of your business. An organised system is also a much more pleasant one, especially when you're trying to find an odd receipt or an up to date phone book. Fix or throw away broken objects and keep computer cables in a good order and out of sight. Use cable tidies and trunking if necessary. Keep your desk organised with trays, organisers and a pen pot or pencil case. Keep open shelves neat and tidy and make use of closets and cupboards wherever possible. If you have coat hangers use them instead of draping your coat over a chair or desk.

229203_7907 'It's organised mess'. Yeah, whatever.

2. The Desk

After de-cluttering your desk, it's time to examine its position. The 'command position' is where your desk is placed not directly in front of a door, but facing it, and not right in front of a wall or window. Being able to see the door prevents you from being startled or surpirsed. Unexpected interruptions and people 'invading' your space can lead to distraction and anxiety. You especially don't want to be looking at stairs, closets or toilets, and if you have no choice but to face a wall, hide it with relaxing nature posters. If you share an office, don't set your desk to face the other persons. This can lead to bad Feng Shui and confrontation. It can also make either person feel uncomfortable.

1394399_22095840 A better view than those health regulations from 1996...

3. Light

Fluorescent lights are the biggest killer of Feng Shui in an office. They buzz, flicker and cause unwelcome distractions which impact negatively on your work. Open up the blinds and bathe your office in natural light, especially if there's a nice view outside. Mirrors placed high on the walls can reflect outside light and images without reflecting everyone that walks past. Remember, we don't just need light to see. We also need it to survive. 'Mallumination' is the term coined for sunlight deficiency, which more and more people are suffering from as we spend all of our time inside, particularly in winter months when we have little choice. Softer light from lamps and ceiling lights is preferred over harsh, bright and fluorescent sources.

4. Plants

Everyone recognises the benefits of having plants in the office. They're an instant feel good factor. My personal favourites are lucky bamboo (it's so low maintenance), dragon trees and peace lilies. Peace lilies and similar plants can also help purify the air, and lucky bamboo in a decorative pot is an ideal desk plant. You can decorate the soil with rocks and crystals which also helps retain the moisture in the soil. Big leafy plants with stable pots are great to use close to the corners of the office, and can also be used to hide unsightly sockets or pipes. Try to avoid sharp and fierce plants like cacti, which can promote a hostile environment.

680236_17844073 This would be much more attractive with a spattering of river pebbles...

5. The Elements

EARTH increases feelings of stability and grounding, and represents wealth. Landscape and pastoral images are wonderful for an earthy office. Use wooden, brick and ceramic textures alongside earthy browns, sandy yellows and leafy greens. A sand filled Japanese zen garden is ideal for an earth environment.

FIRE increases productivity and creativity. Use red in the office. A red lamp, candle, or even a canvas print of a red sky or sandy desert will do.

1385838_21566743 You don't need to physically light the office on fire.

WATER represents communication and freedom. Mirrors (used sparingly as they can reflect bad energy), frosted glass detailing and low maintenance aquariums can brighten up a water office. You could also hang rippling sheer curtains or purchase a little fountain. Free flowing water also symbolises free flowing money!

740249_35787950 Unfortunately the water cooler does not count as a viable alternative.

6. Last Minute Touches

Here are a few ideas for peace inducing, distinctly oriental finishing touches to your newly Chi balanced office.

1024035_57038553 Yin Yang chime balls - just don't drop them on your feet, they're heavy.
  • Crystals and rocks can be used sparingly around the office. Light reflecting crystals hung in front of a window can be a stunning addition.
  • The soothing sound of wind chimes would be great in a larger office where they would not cause a distraction, or if you have a bit of outside space.
  • Bonsai trees. Although they can can be notoriously difficult to maintain.
  • Yin Yang balls are great stress relievers. Roll the decorative, chiming balls around your palm for a bit of bliss.
  • A little Buddha statue adds a peaceful touch to the office. You can find Buddha statues made from wood, metal, stone and jade.
794720_68379054 Gentle Buddha.

We hope we've helped you find a bit of office enlightenment.

We even used a centred font to try and Feng Shui balance this post! Now I just need to convince my boss to let me have a pet fish for the office. Or maybe a panda to help control that bamboo...

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