If you feel like your office is holding you back from reaching your full working potential, there are many ways to address the problem. The short answer is to cut down on clutter and make the room comfortable, but a good working atmosphere goes farther than that. The ancient concept of feng shui is a popular way to create a balanced atmosphere in modern Western work environments.
Feng shui goes far beyond all the coffee table books you remember from the late 90s. In simplest terms, it is a balance of energy. The concept derives from ancient Chinese belief and was most often applied to sacred buildings and tomb sites for protection. Today, people use the feng shui guidelines to keep negative energy from dominating a room. Simple changes like de-stigmatising clutter by simply removing it can make a world of difference in how you work and how clients respond to your office.
Think about every element of your workspace. Even simple features like office chairs can change the entire mood of the room. If you take clients, you would not want to force your visitors to sit in hard, uncomfortable chairs. You may also consider the Feng Shui principle of balancing the natural elements when picking a chair. Something that sits lower to the ground will leave people more comfortable and closer to the Earth. Have them face a window if possible. Include elemental design into your layout, such as a fountain, to create the sense of movement and flowing ideas.
Other Ways to Create Energy
Maybe you don’t feel like having a power outlet near your head would cause energy disruption, and maybe you have no choice but to partially block a window with furniture. Frankly, trying to achieve the authentic sacred, pure atmosphere of ancient feng shui is not entirely possible in today’s western business culture. However, you can still apply some of the practical principles to create a better working atmosphere for yourself and those around you.
For instance, you may not think purifying the air makes any difference, but a simple plant brings a brand new energy to your office space. Boxes and files may surround you, but making sure that at least the entryway to your office is completely clear will create a more positive atmosphere for those entering your office. Excessive power cords and appliances create a synthetic, oppressive atmosphere, so trying to organise and hide cords will give the room a more natural feel. Even if no one ever visits your office, you still do, and that should be enough motivation to make your office welcoming.
Most people know the feeling of walking into a cluttered, miserable workspace. It makes you want to leave as soon as possible, and this is no way to make progress, creative or otherwise, at work. An organised, personalised office with balanced features and positive energy flow will enable you to perform to your full potential each time you enter it. Don’t let an unbalanced office separate you from your creative energy.