The practice originated in China more than 3,000 years ago.  Many Asian businesspeople go to great lengths to incorporate feng shui into their corporate environment. In recent years, the feng shui philosophy has become increasingly popular in Western countries as well.

Feng shui proponents believe that employing its principles in your office can bring about productivity and success.

An office that’s inviting, organised, and aesthetically appealing can make work more enjoyable.

The 5 elements of feng shui

In feng shui, there are five elements that attract energy and need to be balanced. These include:

  • Wood. This element channels creativity and growth. Trees, plants, or green objects can represent wood.
  • Fire. This is the most powerful element. It creates passion, energy, expansion, boldness, and transformation. Candles or the colour red can bring the fire element into a space.
  • Water. This element is linked to emotion and inspiration. Water features or blue items can represent this element.
  • Earth. The earth element signifies stability and strength. Incorporate the earth element with rocks, carpets, old books, or things that are brown or tan in color.
  • Metal. Metal unites all the elements, while offering focus and order. Use objects that are metal or white, silver, or grey in colour.

How feng shui your office

There are many ways to bring Feng Shui in to your office space, from colour choice to furniture placement.  Here’s a few ideas:

Place your desk in the power position

According to feng shui, you should place your desk so that you are sitting in the “power position.” This is the furthest spot from the entrance of the room. Arrange your desk so that you can see the door when seated.

Create a strong backing

You can produce strong feng shui backing by positioning your chair so your back is against a solid wall. If this isn’t possible, try placing a row of lush plants behind your seating area.

Choose the right chair

A comfortable chair with a high backing is ideal for feng shui. It’s believed that a high back creates support and protection.

Introduce water and plant elements

Experts believe incorporating water features and plants into your workspace can creative positive energy. Try placing a fountain with moving water in your office. A live plant can also help improve indoor air quality.

Hang artwork

Surround your office with images and objects that are inspiring, such as pictures with mottos or images that symbolise what you want to accomplish.

Choose the right colours

Feng shui office colours should create balance without being overwhelming. Some popular choices are:

  • soft yellow
  • sandstone
  • pale gold
  • pale orange
  • pale green
  • blue green
  • white

Opt for natural lighting

When possible, use natural light from windows. Yellow-tinted and fluorescent lighting can bring about fatigue. If you must use artificial light, opt for incandescent, full-spectrum light bulbs.

 

What to avoid

Some common mistakes can hinder your feng shui office vibe. Here are some tips on what not to do.

No clutter

Eliminate the clutter in all areas of your office. This includes your desk space, the floor, and any bookshelves. Experts believe an organised office can increase efficiency and productivity while providing mental clarity.

Don’t sit back to back or face to face

If you must share your office with another person, avoiding sitting back to back or face to face, as these positions can create conflict. Try staggering your desks or creating a small barrier with a plant or other object to break up the space.

Get rid of sharp angles

Try to avoid furniture or objects with sharp angles. If you have these items in your office, reposition them so that they aren’t facing you while you work.

Don’t get carried away with colour

Very bright, vivid colours can be too much for an office. You want colours that are inviting, not overwhelming.