Energize your cubicle workplace with Feng Shui!

I recently had the opportunity to volunteer at the Veteran’s Administration for their employee Diversity Day 2012 “Perceptions, Stereotypes and Conversations Leading to Understanding”.  Topics were wide-ranging and fascinating from What Our Names Say About Us to a display on how to raise Koi (with live fish)!  For those employees who stopped by my table on Feng Shui, I learned that many were interested in how to energize their cubicles. Office cubicles offer both opportunities for ease in working and problems to solve for the Feng Shui practitioner. 

What’s great about working in an office cubicle?   Office cubicles have been designed and arranged to maximize storage and optimize workspace. Most cubicles are built with plenty of storage space above and below the desk so you have clear space to work without having to store your files on your desk.  Another great option in cubicles is open, useable wall space either with a built-in bulletin board making it easy to place artwork that supports and enhances your workstation or a white board for making notes and keeping organized. Plenty of storage and a built-in art or planning wall are two good Feng Shui reasons to enjoy working in a cubicle.

What about the challenges of cubicle office space?  Most challenges revolve around feeling uncomfortable and dealing with noise.  We are at our best in terms of creativity and productivity when we are spatially comfortable and confident.  This can be achieved when we are seated in, what’s called in Feng Shui, the power or command position.  This is the place where, when seated behind your desk, you can see the door.  It’s also preferable to have a wall behind you or next to you for support.  In most cubicles you are facing one of the walls with your back to the open doorway when seated – exactly the opposite of the power/command position!  And, because it’s all built-in you can’t change the location of the desk.   What do you do?  With Feng Shui there usually is a way to “fix” an arrangement problem.   The fix is to place a mirror on the wall where when you look up from your work with a quick glance you can see if someone is coming into your space from behind you.  This easy fix can immediate give you the confidence of having control over your space – and you will be able to work more productively.    In addition to using sound cancelling headphones or placing a sound machine or water fountain on your desk (if allowed), mirrors can also be helpful to mitigate noise.  A mirror placed facing away from you toward the wall where the noise is coming from is a way to intentionally “reflect” back the noise away from you without negativity or judgment.   Obviously it’s also important to speak to your co-workers about keeping the noise down!

It’s always rewarding and fun to share Feng Shui and I particularly enjoyed meeting the open-minded, enthusiastic employees working at our local Veteran’s Administration during their “Diversity Day” many who said they’d be putting these Feng Shui recommendations into practice!

Practice Feng Shui: Listen to Your Clutter Meter

Decluttering your home is one of the easiest Feng Shui practices I know of to break the dam of stuck energy. It can be done without spending any money, unless you need to buy some storage bins. It can be done in any amount of time (5 minutes is all you need to de-clutter a coffee table!) and over time. To keep the clutter meter needle close to my tolerance level I schedule a de-cluttering date every week.

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Feng Shui lessons are everywhere: even on the road!

I was driving home from work on one of our first warm days of spring, enjoying the slight breeze and sunshine when I saw the driver in the car ahead of me roll down his window and toss a cigarette butt onto the street. My happy mood suddenly dissolved and I became incensed. I felt as if someone had dumped garbage onto my living room floor. How dare he and why did I feel this way, anyhow?

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What’s the best Feng Shui artwork? Depends on you!

In a Feng Shui consultation clients will often be ready to move their furniture around to change out the energy of their spaces. They may be eager to paint, or change the layout of a room or even its purpose but sometimes they’re surprised when I ask them to tell me about their artwork. What’s the best Feng Shui artwork? It depends on you. What’s on the walls is as important as what is in the room.

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Celebrate a Feng Shui Valentine’s Day all month long!

Who doesn’t need a little boost in the Love Department?  Practically all of us do and with Feng Shui, it’s easy.  Whether you’re looking for love, nurturing new love, or energizing mature love, you can use Feng Shui to create some energy around your goal.

Feng Shui is based on three important beliefs:  all things are alive with energy, all things are connected and all things are constantly changing.  We take these beliefs and use them in practical ways to create the lives we want.  Hence, we move things around in our physical lives (e.g., artwork, furniture, bikes, lamps that are alive with energy) to impact our emotional lives.   We are connected to our things and our spaces and we can change them around.  When it comes to enhancing love, Feng Shui gives us lots of options.

Two hearts equal love

Here are a just a few ideas:

  • Place things in twos around your home to remind you of your “coupledom” – it can be two candles on a mantelpiece; two vases with flowers on your table, two ceramic figures on a shelf, two chairs by the fireplace, two birdhouses in a tree.  You get my drift here:  the intention is two and the physical space holds two.
  • What if you’re not currently in a relationship?  Do the above anyway – if your intention is being in a relationship.
  • Look around your space and make sure that there is room for two – e.g., two bedside tables in your master bedroom, two stools at the bar, space for two in your closet.  Sometimes clients will tell me that they want to be in a relationship and their home is so packed with stuff there’s no room for another person.
  • Love is supported by the Fire element – use the colors of fire (reds and oranges), the shape of the pyramid, photos of your loved one and animal prints to spice things up.
  • When using the bagua, Feng Shui’s treasure map of your space, you’ll find the Love & Marriage area of your home in the upper right hand corner from your front door.   The Love & Marriage area is also supported by the Earth element – earth-toned colors, the shape of the square or rectangle and things made of earth, such as ceramics.   Two terra cotta birds sitting on a windowsill would work well here and here’s why:  you’d be using animals (Fire element) in a pair (two), made of earth, in an earthy color sitting in a rectangular window (Earth element x 3)!
  • When laying the bagua remember that all areas under the roofline belong inside it, which means for many homes there is an attached garage in one of the bagua areas.   I know what this is like because in my home, the Love & Marriage area is in my attached garage!  In order to enhance this area I keep it very de-cluttered (no stuck energy), and we’ve hung our bicycles and fiery orange kayaks on the wall together.

With Feng Shui, there is always more than one way to change or enhance a space and you can usually use what you have on hand!  It’s simple to try, so boost up your love energy during the month of February and enjoy the good vibes.  Happy Feng Shui Valentine’s Day!

In Feng Shui, environment affects us: witness the palm tree vs the garbage dump

I often use photos in my workshops to illustrate Feng Shui principles. Two of my favorites are of the palm tree and the garbage dump. I ask my students to imagine standing on the edge of a beautiful empty beach framed by a palm tree or standing on the edge of a large garbage dump. “Do you feel different in each of these environments?,” I ask them. Ah, yeah, is the usual response.

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Feng Shui bed placement and other guest room ideas!

If you are lucky, you will have guests coming and going over the next six weeks blessing your home with love and laughter, great conversation, fabulous food and gifts. Feng Shui principles can help you prepare for them and keep your home running smoothly. With Feng Shui, we’re always looking to make our spaces safe, comfortable and harmonious.

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Feng Shui luck: make your own!

Recently, when speaking about Feng Shui at one of our local library branches, an audience member asked a question that struck a chord: “We’ve had a string of bad luck lately. What can we do, right now, to change our luck?” It’s a great question because most of us have experienced what feels like a string of bad luck at some point in our lives. In fact, many heads were bobbing in agreement. Like many good questions (and I count this as a good one for just this reason) it was asked in a way that held the answer.

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