If working from home is now your ‘normal,’ fengshui can help you reap the rewards. Samantha Wong reports
Surveys have long suggested that remote workers are more productive than their office-based peers. One of the reasons for this, as detailed in Stanford University’s How working from home works out(June, 2020), is that those of us who work from home find it more difficult to create a distinction between business and personal life, and we therefore put in more hours. The commute home, no matter how short, helps office workers switch off and draw a line under their working day. For remote workers this can be more of a challenge – and fengshui can help with that.
If your flat is big enough, your best plan is to set aside a ‘spare room’ as your home office. That way you can literally shut up shop at the end of the day – close your office door, and you’ll be less tempted to nip back to your computer after-hours. But what if your workspace is an add-on in an open-plan living room? A good option is to place your desk behind your sofa (so you don’t have to spend the evening looking at your in tray), or consider screening it off, either with a curtain or free-standing room divider.
What’s critical is that you avoid squeezing your desk into a corner of your bedroom – fengshui says you need to create as much distance as possible between the place where you work and the place where you sleep.
Decorate for success
Your home office mirrors your career and money coming in, so it’s important to design it right regardless of its size. As always, you need to start with the fengshui basics: unclutter your space (clutter drains your energy), improve your lighting system (especially if you often feel tired), and clear the air (stagnant air is demotivating). A ceiling fan will help get the sheng chi (beneficial energy) flowing, as will a couple of full-spectrum lights that simulate natural light, reducing glare, fatigue and eye strain.
When you walk into your home office, you need to feel energised and inspired. You are decorating your workspace with your success, wellbeing and productivity in mind, so include meaningful career memorabilia and family mementos that make you feel successful, appreciated and happy.
Green, the fengshui colour of wealth and success, is your go-to colour when decorating your home office. Use green on the walls and be sure to bring in a couple of green-leaved houseplants. The energy of plants will refresh not only the energy of your workspace but also your own energy. Know that jade, bamboo and all succulents are wealth-symbolic plants, and they represent creativity and growth.
Next up, there are three areas you need to activate in your home office to boost your career, and to do this you need a compass. Stand in your office and locate true north. This space represents your career, so decorate it with black or mirrored accessories. Now activate the southeast corner, representing wealth, by incorporating items that speak to you of money or introducing a plant. Boost the office’s south area, representing fame and reputation, with anything red. Note that encouraging your cat to hang out in your office will also help you gain recognition because animals possess powerful red fire energy.
You need to prioritise comfort in your work space, so invest in an ergonomically designed chair and a solid fengshui-approved desk. Avoid glass desks, as fengshui says they are too unstable. Metal desks are great for focus, but they are cold and impersonal, so add a tablecloth or wooden bowl. A wooden desk will boost your creativity, but the wood element carries a frenetic, scattered energy, so place a cool, calm lepidolite crystal near your computer. This will help you concentrate, while also shielding you from electromagnetic pollution.
Now all you need to do is position your desk correctly. It needs to be in the powerful command position, diagonally opposite the door. If this is not possible, place it in the southwest of your home office. This is also a corner of power.
It’s important that your back isn’t facing the door when you sit at your desk. If you can’t see the door, you will miss out on opportunities and find that colleagues are talking about you behind your back. If for some reason you have to sit with your back to the door, place a mirror on your desk so you can see what’s behind you.
You want to have a clear view of the door but you don’t want to sit too close to it or right opposite it. Why? Because the energy that rushes in through a doorway is too strong. If you can’t comply with this rule, place a small bell near the door, or a plant between your desk and the door.
There should be a solid wall behind you to provide support. If you have your back to a window, you can stop the incoming energy stabbing you in the back by hanging a picture of a mountain or a tortoise beside the window. Importantly too, don’t face a wall, this will mean that you are facing obstacles. If there’s no other way to position your desk, create your own window by hanging a picture of an inspiring landscape on the wall in front of you. This will also serve you well if you follow the 20-20-20 rule – as you glance up from your computer screen every 20 minutes, you’ll have a beautiful ‘view’ to rest your eyes on.
Cap A wooden desk promotes creativity, a plant boosts energy and a well-placed painting removes obstacles
Your pet’s red fire energy can help you gain recognition
Photos courtesy of unsplash.comTags: energy, Feng Shui, furniture, home office