If you’re anything like me, you probably spend way too much time at your desk, whether it’s in your home office or a cubicle at work. Luckily, there are many ways you can improve the vibe of your work space. Plants, for example, will breathe life into your office, literally. Essential oils will make the space smell heavenly and boost your mood too.
Another way you can seriously create more good juju and take your work vibe to the next level? Feng shui, the ancient Chinese art of placement.“Feng Shui principles provide guidelines for how to successfully arrange our space with intention and meaning,” says Feng Shui consultant Jen Boyd. “Our environment influences the way we feel and it’s important that what surrounds us is supportive.”
“It helps us discover how to create the most harmonious spaces for our mental, physical, and spiritual well-being,” adds Dara Dubinet, intuitive astro-geographer and Feng Shui consultant.
By simply placing things in your office in a certain way and bringing in essential Feng Shui elements, you can boost your productivity, attract more wealth, and feel good on all levels—mind, body, and soul. Into it? Here’s how to Feng Shui your office, according to the pros.
Step one: Declutter, declutter, declutter
Before you infuse your office with good vibes, you first need to get rid of all the clutter, Dubinet says. Specifically, make sure there is no clutter on the floor so “chi,” aka life force energy, can flow freely. She also recommends tossing out or fixing things that don’t work and removing things that make you feel any negative emotion. (Goodbye, lame mug you got at the office holiday party last year!)
Step two: Face your desk towards the door
Desk placement is also very important in Feng Shui. It needs to be pleasing and comfortable so you’ll actually feel inspired to work and get things done. According to Dubinet, the best placement is having your desk face the door. “When we face a wall with our backs to the door, someone can surprise us and ‘stab us in the back,’” she says. This sounds dramatic, she says, but it can create a subtle anxiety, and can make you annoyed when someone inevitably ends up surprising or interrupting you at work.
If you work in an office where you can’t necessarily rearrange your desk, Dubinet says a fix for this is to place a mirror on or near your desk so you can see who is coming and going behind you.
Step three: Keep your window open and clutter-free
The air quality in the office is important for elevating your productivity. If you have a window, Dubinet recommends opening it and keeping the sill clear of clutter. “ It will help the chi to flow through the room,” she says. “Windows represent our child’s voice—our creativity.” You can also score some Feng Shui bonus points if you add some drapes, a mobile, or a wind chime to create some extra movement.
Step four: Infuse it with pleasing scents
Making your office smell really good will also uplift the energy of the space. Dubinet recommends diffusing lemon essential oils. “This scent promotes concentration and has calming and clarifying properties that are helpful when you’re feeling angry, anxious, or run down,” she says. Other office-apropos scents include lavender, peppermint, and cinnamon. If you’re in a shared or small office space, be sure to check with your coworkers to make sure they’re cool with your chosen scent. You don’t want to be that person.
Step five: Balance the five elements of Feng Shui
In Feng Shui, there are five elements: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. Both experts say that it’s important for your office to have a balance of all the elements for optimal flow. Here’s how to bring in each of the elements.
- Wood: The easiest way to bring in some wood is with plants. Boyd says greenery symbolizes growth and provides an uplifting energy for your career. Where exactly you place your new potted pals will also determine what you’ll attract more of into your life, whether it’s love, wealth, or more good vibes.
- Fire: The element of fire helps bring warmth to a space and also helps with fame and recognition, making it especially important to play up the element in the space where you work. Dubinet says you can infuse fire into the space with candles, triangle shapes, and the colors red, pink, orange, and yellow. Boyd also recommends telling the story of your successful career by displaying diplomas, awards, and artwork that depict upward mobility and positivity.
- Earth: “The Earth element helps us have calmness, stability, and protection,” Dubinet says. Ceramic items, pottery, or tiles will bring in some grounding vibes as will earthy tones like brown and light yellow.
- Metal: Metal is all about clarity, light, precision, and sharpness. “It helps eliminate distractions,” Dubinet says. The colors that represent metal are grey, white, iron, and—you guessed it—metal. “Keep at least one item made of metal on your desk so that you are reminded to finish what you start,” Boyd adds.
- Water: “The water element brings calm, flow, ease and refreshes,” Dubinet says. “It is a symbol of abundance and an important cure for wealth.” Adorning your office with water fountains, glass, or mirrors will help with the flow. You can also accentuate with the colors blue and black and add in wavy, curvy shapes too.
Let this be a lesson to you: You don’t have to resign yourself to having a sad, dull, dreary workspace. With a few simple design tweaks, you can have a more enjoyable space to spend your 9 am to 5 pm hours—and potentially one that will breed success and productivity, too.
Got all that? Here’s the low-down on the various Feng Shui colors to know, too. And improve your love life just by rearranging your bedroom furniture the Feng Shui way.