Feng Shui Your Cube

A businesswoman in her office cubicle with bamboo and stacked river stones

The office is an overwhelming crush of stress for many people. What steps can you take with your personal area to make it more relaxing and encouraging the flow of positive energy?

Feng shui (rendered as 風水 in traditional Chinese and 风水 in simplified Chinese) at home makes for a more relaxing and productive domestic environment. At home, you have control over your space. At work, you might not have any control over your space, so any chance you get to increase the flow of positive energy should be taken. Here are 8 tips to make the workplace a zone of relaxation, rejuvenation and a constant flow of energy that bring good things to your career and life.

Tip #1: Water

If this type of decoration is allowed on your desk by your employer, a small fountain will work wonders to bring peace and harmony to your work area. One woman who was not allowed to plug in a fountain kept two cups and poured water back and forth as a way to meditate in between tasks. Water is a key element in feng shui but it must be moving. A small aquarium will work wonders for your career but make sure there is no threat to paperwork or your computer if it were to overflow or suffer some other unfortunate accident.

Tip #2: A Small Mirror

If co-workers can walk up from behind, place a small mirror at the point where they would see themselves approaching – bad energy (and even ghosts in some ancient Asian legends) can see itself and will retreat when a mirror is in its path. If you have your own office, a small mirror centered just above the doorway will work wonders in making your working space harmonious.

Tip #3: Plants

Augment your space with attractive bamboo or other plants that aim vertically and do not have too may horizontal branches. Cactus, with its spiky needles, is out of the question. In fact, if a co-worker gives you a small cactus for your office, find out if this person has any knowledge of feng shui, as this is something a knowledgeable practitioner of the art would give to an enemy over whom an advantage was sought. Cactus stabs good energy, weakening it. Always water your plant and keep it healthy; if you are going on vacation, you might consider removing it from your office, as returning to an unhealthy plant will mean that getting back into the work routine will be more difficult. Better to bring a new plant that is fresh and healthy to hit the ground running upon your return.

Tip #4: Cable Clutter

A mess of computer and electrical cables is the feature of many offices, but the woven messes we perpetuate strangle the flow of good energy in our workspaces. While untangling the cords permanently is not realistic, hiding them from view with tubes and visual barriers that look good will assist the overall harmony of energy in your cubicle or office.

Tip #5: Desk Placement

The optimum placement for your desk is facing the door or entrance. If there is a window behind you, try not to sit directly in front of it. A wall behind you that has a small storage space would be perfect. This would give you the strength to move mountains on the job. If the view from your window is of a skyscraper close by, it is okay to sit with your back to that window as the mountain power will be yours to harness in your climb to the top.

Tip #6: Against a Wall

Facing a wall at work is a fast ticket to a dead-end job. But many cubicles are built this way and there is hardly any way around it. To defeat the dead end energy of the wall, hang an artwork that has a deep 3 dimensional illustration. Posters with graphic design will not suffice and calendars are worthless in defeating the flat energy killer of an office wall. Your picture needs to illustrate depth that appears to go way beyond the picture plane. A flat abstraction is no match for the dissipated energy; a well-painted scene of surrealistic wonder or naturalistic beauty will suffice, as long as it appears to be a boundless and deep pictorial space. This one well-chosen artwork could bring you more success in an office of cubicles that force their occupants to face the wall at work. Imagine being the best-performing employee in your area all because you chose the right artwork to pull in good energy flow while everyone else had calendars and trendy flat graphics to stop the flow flat, stunting career growth in the process.

Tip #7: Emulate the Boss

Many co-workers will frown on you if you were to have a picture of the boss in your cubicle. But a picture that emulates your boss is good enough. Energy flow from the top will find like-minded people in the company. Suppose your boss is of Polish descent. A small picture of Saint Wenceslaus (a patron saint of Poland) among some of your family pictures will suffice in pulling the leadership attraction toward your achievements. Many employees use small photograph collages in their cubicle to state a position of independence. Use yours to subtly unify your employment with the top decision makers.

Tip #8: Mind the Ceiling

A soft drop ceiling of acoustic tiles or a flat, unimpeded ceiling will always be the best friends good energy can have. A bad ceiling will have exposed beams or many pipes, bars or other lines moving through the space. You can combat this with the vertical bamboo plant discussed earlier as well as with a vertical light fixture pointing upward. A cup with many pens protruding out will help with the vertical energy to combat the horizontal clashing above, but don’t bother with this cup if you do not have the ceiling problem and do not let the pens get angled too diagonally.

Finally, if you are working your way to the top of the corporate world, make sure your space remains harmonious and as free of clutter as possible.

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