Everyday Feng Shui: Success in 2013: Let your office work for you
By Maria McCullough
“The act of turning the places where we work into places that we love can transform our own lives, and will in turn positively affect the lives of everyone around us.” — Denise Linn
WHETHER IN YOUR HOME OR AT WORK, your office can act to empower or disempower you. Make your home/work office your place of power — what you do there leads directly to your prosperity and success. What is your office doing to your energy?
What is the ideal location for home or work offices? If your work is action-oriented, your office is best located in the front of the home or office building: in the Knowledge/Self-Cultivation, Career or Helpful People areas. If your work is more contemplative, the ideal location is toward the back, where the energy is more peaceful. If you can’t control the location of your office, whether in your place of business or at home, apply Feng Shui principles to create a more positively charged energy flow. Make sure you give your office the same level of attention you give to your best client or biggest project.
Recommendations for creating powerful home and business offices
• The most important recommendation is that your desk be placed so that you’re sitting in the room’s most powerful “command” position. You want to have a perfect view of the door. It is also best to have a solid wall, not a window, behind you. If you can’t move away from the window, put plants, shades or furniture as a buffer between you and the window. If your desk is built in and you can’t reposition it, put a mirror on or behind it to reflect the door.
• As always in Feng Shui, being organized is critical. Powerful, productive Chi cannot find its way through piles of papers, files and office equipment. Your productivity will skyrocket if you adopt an organizing strategy and stick to it.
• Sharp angles and corners promote irritation and aggression, so camouflage them with plants, fabric or small hanging items such a crystal. When buying new furniture, choose designs with rounded corners. Circular and oval tables are the best for sustaining harmony at meetings.
• Your chair, or “throne,” should be the most comfortable and ergonomically correct for you.
• Choose a desk large enough to store all of your work and give you adequate working space. Ensure that all wiring is hidden in desk openings, or behind screens or plants.
• This is a place for powerful art and colors, as well as awards, diplomas, and certificates that represent your career and contributions to the world.
Just as you would apply the Bagua to your entire home, you can apply the same Bagua just to your office. Beginning at its front entrance, check the arrangement of your office, whether at your place of business, your home or both, on the Bagua Map.
The Feng Shui Bagua (Ba-gua) Map, above, is represented as a grid of nine sectors. The Bagua comes from the Chinese philosophy, “The I Ching,” and literally means “eight trigrams.”
The areas within your office should take on the qualities of the Bagua area in which they reside. Stand at your office door and face the room. Determine if you are entering from Knowledge, Career or Helpful People, and arrange the room accordingly. By placing objects in your office that anchor the various Bagua areas, you stimulate and sustain your creative juices and provide your office with meaning and balance. Because your office is obviously smaller than your entire home/building, the fixes can be small yet powerful.
Here are some examples of enhancements.
Career Area of your office
• Items in black or very dark colors, glass/crystal items, items reflecting your work
• Art depicting water scenes; if you have room, a small bubbling fountain works well here
Knowledge and Self-Cultivation Area of your office
• Wooden bookcases, books, the colors of blues, greens, or black and in the shape of columns or stripes
• Healthy plants with rounded, soft leaves and art depicting nature scenes
Friends/Family/Health Area of your office
• Healthy floral arrangements, art representing flowers or perfect health, personal papers and files
• Photos of family, friends, colleagues, team members or representing a healthy work environment
Wealth Area of your office
• Opulent items in the purple color spectrum, art representing wealth, printer or banking files
• Healthy, round-leaf plants or small bamboo gardens
Fame Area of your office
• Items in the colors red, inspirational sayings, merits and awards
• Art representing the fire element such as the sun or a large animal, which symbolize power and focus on business
Love and Marriage Area of your office
• Art or photos depicting pairs of items such as vases, small objects or pictures, colors in red spectrum
• Fax machine, which enhances communication between you and clients
Children and Creativity Area of your office
• Photos of children or items representing your creative projects
• Items in metal and the colors of white and pastels; whimsical art
Helpful People and Travel Area of your office
• Photos or posters of your team, clients, spiritual guides, mentors, helpful people or desired travel locations
• Items in metal and colors of white, black or gray (a good place for a metal file cabinet with your client files)
Center Area of your office
• Items and art in ceramics, yellow colors, earth tones and rectangle shapes
Your desk and the Bagua
The same Bagua principles can also be applied when arranging your desk. For example: place a calculator, crystal bowl, computer monitor or bamboo garden in Wealth area (back left); a paperweight award, name plaque or lamp in Fame (back center); a vase with two roses, a picture of you and your mate in the Love area (back right); pens, markers or pictures of your children in Children and Creativity (right center); a telephone in Helpful People (right front corner); a black desk blotter or laptop computer in Career (in front where you sit); books or papers in Knowledge and Self-Cultivation (front left corner); an inbox with work files, a small flowering plant such as an orchid in Family, Friends, Health area (left center).
Feng Shui at work
Our biggest success this year has been the remodel of our home office, which is in the Career sector of our home. For many years the old, cluttered desk resided in the right back corner of the room (Love/Marriage area) ,with the user’s back to the door and facing the wall. Being an interior room, and having no windows, the lighting was very poor. I never enjoyed being in there.
My husband worked for a large corporation but did most of his work from home. It wasn’t until his project ended and he was offered retirement — a few years before he wanted — that I realized how disempowered our office was making him.
We quickly made plans to install a light tube for natural light, and replaced the dingy carpeting with beautiful hardwood floors. We purchased a large oak desk, but before we had the desk completely installed we took time sitting in different areas of the room to get a sense of where the power area was. In other words, where would we enjoy sitting and what would we enjoy looking at the most?
My husband and I both agreed to place it in the middle — the Fame wall — with our backs in the Wealth area facing the door. Now we look out to the entrance foyer, which is one of my favorite rooms in the house. We also took the opportunity to purge old files and create a sleek positive working environment. With an elemental balance and a place for everything, the energy shift could be felt almost immediately; my husband was offered a lucrative job for a new corporation, utilizing his skills and being appreciated, which made him feel productive once again. My career has also blossomed, with more class participants, home consultations and educational consulting. Now I can’t wait to sit behind the desk to write my columns, write my Feng Shui consultation reports or just check email.
A number of my clients have a home office/guest room arrangement. The same principles for desk placement and Bagua enhancements apply. One just moved into a new home that has French doors with a commanding view of her garden in her guest room/office. She chose to place her antique curved desk at an angle in the back left of the room facing the garden. On the wall to the right of the desk she has a futon/convertible bed. Since this room is in the Friends/Family Health area of her home, she has many family pictures in it, but the power of her desk placement, in the Wealth area, with both its commanding view of the garden and entrance door, make this a successful work environment.
Affirmations and inner work
Remember that in Feng Shui, intent plays a significant role in enhancing any area of your home or business. Intent is the inner work that leads you to a more harmonious life. Do you believe in yourself? Do you hold the vision of being a great success? Meditate on how to align you purpose in life to your professional goals. Inspire yourself with affirmations such as, “Everything I touch is a success,” and “Every day my work attracts magnificent people and opportunities in my life.”
Feng Shui on a shoestring
Feng Shui enhancements do not have to cost a great deal. The act of decluttering your office, turning your desk to face the door or placing a mirror behind it does volumes to create a powerful shift in your career energy. Just try it!
You can review any of the areas of the Bagua in greater detail in past columns on my website by clicking here.
Happy New Year and much success to you!
* * *
FOR QUESTIONS OR HOME CONSULTATIONS email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and put “Feng Shui” in the subject line, or visit my website (where you can read past columns) or find “Feng Shui by Maria” on Facebook, where I post pictures as examples to enhancements.
Also, check out my blog — just go to the website and click on “Blog,” and you can view many pictures and I will respond to your questions quickly.
Learn more in my next classes and receive $40 off a home consultation. I will be teaching more three-hour classes through the Benicia Parks and Recreation this winter and spring:
• Saturday, Jan. 26, 9 a.m.
• Saturday, April 20, 9 a.m.
The Parks and Recreation Guide is now available if you’d like to register. Participants will receive $40 off a home consultation. Mark your calendars — and invite friends!
Until then … Blessings!
Benicia resident Maria McCullough is the owner and founder of Feng Shui by Maria. She is a speaker and educator with more than 15 years’ experience specializing in residential, landscape and business consultations.