Feng Shui (translated to mean “wind” and “water”) is the eastern concept of creating harmony within one’s environment. So, if your office feels a little more like a jail cell than a place of motivation or productivity, it might be time for a bit of rearranging and feng shui-ing to increase the symbiotic relationship between you, your workspace, and your career. Incorporating feng shui into your office space empowers you to direct and enhance the Qi (pronounced “chee”) or vital life force energy in yourself and your space.
Before we dive in, here’s a short refresher on the guiding principles of feng shui. Essentially, the holistic way of thinking is broken down into the following three pieces, all of which intertwine and interact with each other to create a pleasant space.
- The Bagua is an eight-part “map” used to organize a floor plan (in our case, your home, work office, or desk). The eight points of the Bagua are described a little differently across sources but can be generalized as: Family, Wealth, Fame, Love/Partnership, Children/Creativity, Knowledge, Career, Helpful People/Travel, and, in the middle of all of it, you!
- The Five Elements, when used in tangent with the Bagua, can create a harmonious balance and emphasis on parts of your life. The five elements are Wood, Fire, Water, Earth, and Metal.
- Yin and Yang, which is the core concept of feng shui, is the balance of opposites, complementary forces within a space (e.g., black and white).
If you start feeling overwhelmed, remember that much feng shui has to do with intention and flow as much as specific pieces of décor within a room. Try using accessories within your existing space and simply rearranging them to get started.
Think of the Bagua as a loose map that guides the flow of your home. It can be based upon physical directions (North, East, South, West) or the front entrance of the room (or desk) you are trying to rearrange.
It Starts with Your Desk
Begin by arranging your desk (a metaphorical extension of your career) in the “commanding” position, which in feng shui and Bagua principles is far away from the door/entrance and at a diagonal if possible. Most importantly, position the desk where you can see your door clearly, allowing you to be fully aware of your surroundings.
Remember that you can emphasize a specific area of the Bagua by incorporating more aspects and elements of the map into your room. For example, if you are focusing on emphasizing your career, including curves, waves, and black elements into the north (or entrance) may help. Additionally, the element associated with career is water, so adding a small water fountain in your space may also encourage this focus.
The five elements (or forces), combined with the Bagua map, help to focus the energy within your space (again, this can be your whole home office, desk, or both, depending on your situation). Check out these elemental tricks for creating a balanced environment.
Activate the wealth corner of your space by incorporating the wood element. A small, green plant, especially traditionally known plants like lucky bamboo and/or a money tree, located to the east/southeast (or top left of the room from the door) may encourage abundance and prosperity within your career.
In tandem with the Bagua, the fire element can be used to boost fame or perhaps to be a standout team member within your career path. Try incorporating fire elements like a candle or another red, triangle-shaped object in the south-facing part of the room (or space directly opposite the door).
The water element is closely tied with the Career aspect of the Bagda. Incorporate soothing water and water-adjacent items (waves and dark colors like blue and black) into your space in the north (or entrance) of the space. Small water fountains or pieces of water-inspired art are good options for encouraging career focus in a feng-shui office environment. (On a larger scale, think of the soothing nature of large corporations who maintain koi ponds at the entrance of their buildings).
In feng shui, glass represents the water element (though some could argue that glass is created from earth elements such as sand, soda ash, and limestone). Another unique way to incorporate glass as a water element in your career space is with a Glass Office Chair Mat and a DeskGuard Glass Desk Mat.
Since water, as represented by glass, nourishes the wood element in the creative cycle, covering a much-used wooden surface (like a desk and wood flooring) with protective glass makes sense, especially when the intention is to activate wealth through career. And since plastic is a synthetic material that, according to feng shui, can block energy within the environment, a Glass Chair Mat makes the most sense.
Generally associated with knowledge, incorporating earth into your office space with brown, orange, and yellow aspects in the northeast (or to the left of the door) can be helpful. A small bouquet of sunflowers in a clay pot would be a perfect way to gently incorporate elemental earth into your space.
Metal may encourage teamwork for your career by aligning with the “helpful people” piece of the Bagua. Arrange any metal attributes on your desk (maybe a stapler on your desk or a metal file cabinet in your home office) in the west/northwest (or right of the entrance) of your space.
Ultimately, feng shui can be summed up in the harmony of opposites (or polarity) within a space: the yin and yang. Keep your space balanced to promote an even-keel, relaxed, and focused environment.
Remember: Keep it Flowing
When balancing all aspects of feng shui in your space, ensure that you create an open, natural flow. Cut down on clutter to minimize distractions or blockages. This is tangentially relevant to movement. Don’t let an old, cracked plastic chair mat distract you or keep you from smoothly moving through tasks within your space. Just like with the rest of the feng shui principles, keep an open mind and space that promotes wellness and focus. Keep your chair rolling and your career flowing in the right direction with a Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat to stimulate just that.
Learn more about the benefits of a Vitrazza Glass Chair Mat.