Feng Who? Feng Shui! It literally translates to ‘wind and water.’ It can appear somewhat puzzling for someone who is unfamiliar with the ancient practise so I will keep it as uncomplicated as possible.
Originating in China some three thousand years ago, feng shui has its origins in ‘chi’ which is energy or universal life force that is in and around everything. Chi has both ‘yin’ and ‘yang’ which are interconnecting yet opposing energies that compliment each other. An easy way to understand this is imagining the ebb and flow of the tides and how one cannot exist without the other. The aim is to maintain a positive flow of chi and minimise or eradicate negative energy, thus achieving a harmonious and balanced environment.
Feng Shui works with five elements which are water, fire, wood, metal and earth which we incorporate into our space until we are satisfied the balance of chi is at an optimum. Before we add these to our working environments, it is essential to firstly declutter your area. No one can sustain working in an environment that is untidy with items piled high, unnecessary objects, discarded items, wrappers, dirty coffee cups, bits of paper and old receipts…..the list goes on. Whether it takes an hour or a week, decluttering thoroughly and properly is essential.
Ensure your area is clean. Wipe dust from furniture, ensure walls are fresh, vacuum the floor and make sure windows are free from smears. Remove cobwebs from the ceilings, disinfect all keyboards and door handles.
Now that everything is spotless, the desk, table or chair that you work from needs to be as far from the entrance as possible and facing forwards so you can see immediately anyone coming into the room, with your back to the wall and preferably a high backed chair. This is the ‘ power position’ and promotes success and gives an air of importance.
It is believed that chi enters and leaves our environments through windows and doors so keeping these slightly ajar not only allows for the continuous flow of positive chi but will also prevent the room from becoming stale and stagnant by providing welcome ventilation.
The elements, as mentioned above can now be introduced to our working spaces by means of ornaments, pictures, textures, furniture and furnishings, books and houseplants of either the appropriate colours or elements.
Water relaxes, renews and refreshes and is often depicted by the colour blue. Fire brings passion and determination and is red, orange or yellow. Metal brings power and focus and is grey, silver or white. Earth grounds us and soothes. The colours for this are typically browns and greens. Wood brings growth and reflection and are forest colours, different hues of green and rustics are popular.
It is strongly believed that feng shui can improve work environments to become healthier, more productive, minimise stress, more efficient, financially abundant, improved decision making, increased motivation and productivity. Many well known global companies continue to invest in feng shui experts to maximise their potential. An example is multi billionaire Donald Trump. Love him or loathe him, he has made no secret of commissioning different feng shui masters for his various institutions over the years. He is reported to have said ‘I don't have to believe in feng shui. I do it because it makes money’.
So, just because we do not understand something or even believe it does not necessarily mean it will not work for us.