How to Feng Shui Your Office

You might've heard the term in passing, but what exactly is Feng Shui anyway? It comes from Asia and has to do with how you arrange your furniture? Sort of. It's as much about interior design as it is a way of life, a philosophy, and a spiritual practice. The words "Feng" and "Shui" are Chinese and translate to "wind" and "water" respectively. In consideration of how these elements affect the world around us (clouds, ocean currents, rainfall), its energy, and therefore our own energy (think E=mc2), the two words perfectly represent the Feng Shui practice and its thousands of years of history.

The idea is to place the objects in a room in such a way that your positive energy has no blockages, so it can flow as easily as wind or water, and therefore make you feel peaceful and happy. When it comes to office Feng Shui, certain practices are said to lead to earning more money. Because it's had millennia to develop, Feng Shui, which some call the art of placement, can be quite involved. Feng Shui consultants get paid good money to advise on even the smallest details of a room's adherence to the rules. But we know you're busy. So we've put together some quick and easy tips to try out this practice and see if you don't feel more relaxed and happy during otherwise stressful days. One thing is for sure: one of its main tenets is given to executives constantly, every day, and they swear by its effectiveness. It's number one on our list.


A physical mess creates a mental mess, so says Feng Shui. And so do countless organization and productivity experts. So let this be the time to clean out that stack of paper on your desk, get rid of old voicemails lingering in your inbox and clean out your desk "junk" drawer. You should keep a special eye out to toss anything that causes anxiety, but you no longer need. Have a stack of tax returns laying about? Put them out of sight. Have old sticky notes with the bosses' orders scribbled on them? If the tasks are done, get rid of them! Chewed up pencils in times of anxiety? Get rid of those too. Is there anything that's simply a color you don't like that you can replace? Toss it. This is about maximizing your energy and happiness.

Clean Up!

Give a good surface clean and/or dusting to your surface. Cleanliness is next to Feng Shui-ness. Have a book case? Don't bother dusting any book that doesn't represent where you are in life or where you want to be. You can put those in the share-a-book/take-a-book bin.


Have an ugly surface that is perhaps a bit too gray or beige for your liking? Spruce it up. If you're into red, so much the better. In Feng Shui, red represents prosperity. Buy a rug for the floor or colorful fabric to pin to your cube wall. Whatever makes you feel happy. 

Fix It!

Have a desk lamp with a burned light bulb? Get maintenance to fix it asap. No broken things in the Feng Shui office. That goes for anything else that may not be working fully. That jammed stapler? Ask your boss for the Office Max catalog to replace it. 

Feng Shui It! 

By now your office should be spic and span, and you should be seriously committed to keeping it that way. Now is the time to add a little extra touch to the works. In Feng Shui, seeing the opening of your cube or office is a must. If you face away from your entryway, buy a small mirror and place it on a wall so you can see behind you. Have column or ugly support post in your space? Cover it up with a plant. Plants with round leaves are highly advised. They give you oxygen and remind you of the great outdoors…Feng Shui loves nature. Flowing water is said to calm the nerves and promote a feeling of well being, have you ever seen a desk waterfall? They exist and you should feel free to buy one. Pictures of waterfalls are also acceptable. Small chimes that are rung every day (maybe before the boss gets in) will also give harmony to your day.

Enjoy some of these tricks and feel free to say, "Oh, I didn't notice," when your friends declare, "TGIF!"

image: Sharper Image desktop fountain