Yes, I’m aware that the title is a lyric from a song recorded by Wang Chung. Nonetheless, here’s an interesting correlation: Approximately 50 percent of business owners work from home offices, and the majority of them dislike the furniture arrangement, blaming clutter as the foremost impediment to their productivity.
Sorting through clutter, rearranging furniture and other home adornments and making a home office more functional and productive is often accomplished as a last resort; many are doing it using the ancient art of object placement called Feng Shui (pronounced fung schway). Literally translated, it means wind and water. All that’s necessary for getting started is you or someone with a strong back and an open mind.
Some historical background on the subject explains how it works. The basic tenets of Feng Shui are relatively sensible, offering practical applications for potentially improving specific areas of life, assuming you believe in them.
The ancient Chinese art and practice of Feng Shui began in the West Han dynasty around the third century BC. Feng Shui presumes that the earth is a living thing, has life, energy and is influenced by natural, metaphysical and cosmological factors. The United States was first introduced to Feng Shui during the California gold rush of the mid 1800s; the Chinese brought their Feng Shui principles to this country. For decades they were foreign and difficult to accept for early Californians. Now, we’re embracing a modern-day form of Feng Shui called Western Feng Shui involving minor changes to the basic principles via the “Form” and “Compass” schools.
The basic theory of Feng Shui, Yin (black) and Yang (white), the harmonizing factors of the universe, are opposing energies are day and night. Yin and Yang totally depend upon one another; one doesn’t exist without the other. The goal is achieving a balance of Yin and Yang.
Feng Shui details are complicated; we’ll use the basic tenets for beginners. Start by analyzing your environment. Two schools of thought comprise this function: the Form school and the Compass school. The Form school suggests using the physical environment of your land for determining where to live. The Compass school deals with the compatibility between an individual’s energy and the celestial energy from his/her environment. Both are used; we’ll use the Compass school because it’s easier.
Foremost is identifying the ideal office location; north side is best. If physical layout prohibits, choose southwest, northeast or south. With your office situated, focus on following Feng Shui intricacies that are simplistic but, according to believers, enhance business prosperity and productivity.
Sit with a solid wall behind you supporting your life. Never have a window behind you.
Place electronic devices (e.g., computer) in the southeast wealth sector, attracting more business.
No shelf over your desk. This symbolizes burden, the world crashing down on you surprisingly. Heavy shelves are harmful.
Avoid sharp accessories pointing at your desk. That’s Shar Chi symbolizing the cutting knife-edge; a disapproving finger pointing at you. No office cactus; needles create negative shar chi or stagnant, harmful energy.
Comfortably walk around your desk, thereby reducing or controlling workload and offering space to breathe easily.
Remove clutter; keep desktop tidy. No in / out trays on your desk and unused items.
Don’t place a desk in a room between two doors; Chi passes by along with good fortune. Good energy walks in one door, out the other door.
Never set a desk at the top of a staircase; Chi rolls down the stairs, losing opportunity and wealth. If unavoidable, place a mirror above the front door looking in and facing the staircase.
If people entering your office face a wall and a long corridor, place a hanging crystal in this area; good chi will accumulate. Place mirrors to direct Chi into your office.
No electronic items near the main door; considered “hot,” causing energy to dissipate heat; disperses good Chi.
Don’t place an empty vase by the main door; empty vessels deplete good Chi attempting to enter your office; fill a vase with flowers.
Light candle wicks ensuring they are burnt, even if unused. Unlit candles are bad Feng Shui representing possibility limitations.
Place fish tank or fish pond in the southwestern corner of your office. Consider adding a small koi pond in the southwestern sector outside your office.
Enhance wealth and prosperity adding an indoor water feature in the southeast area of your home or office. For luck, place it in the north. A tabletop, bamboo or flat round stones fountain is ideal.
These are the basic tenets of Feng Shui; it’s up to you to do with them as you choose.