Our surroundings form sensory-rich narratives of our lives, punctuated with details and belongings that hold our intentions in place. And because our life stories intersect with our work worlds, creative spaces are equally worthy of mindful design.
Consider what words first percolate when you ponder your workspace. Are you comfortable inviting people into your busy hive? When we "match" our intentions with our environments, it springboards productivity and well-being – an excellent tonic for keeping energy up and making strides in our careers at the same time.
If your office feels like a messy maze, here are five shui tips to guide you onto a wide-open path, both professionally and personally.
1. Get fresh.
Been working in the same exact spot for over a year? Roll up your sleeves and take everything out of your work zone. Wipe down the entire space. Your elbow-deep efforts cleaning shelves, vacuuming corners, and wiping down baseboards will feel like coming out of a long hibernation. This quality of attention to any environment jolts awake our senses and energy, priming us for a satisfying stretch into new territory.
2. Leave open space.
Post-purge, only bring back what is useful, necessary and presently applicable. This is a ripe chance to recycle ruthlessly. Be mindful with every single thing; otherwise, standstill energy and attention vampires will hinge themselves right back into place. Choose a couple of nooks to leave empty – 20% open space is a good goal. When we allow room to breathe, we welcome new possibilities. Think of something you’d like to see shift in your life – be specific – and watch how accommodating those opportunities become.
3. Show up fully.
A desk is a representation of how well we support our own success. If a desk is too small, it hampers our efficiency. When a desk is too large, it can make opportunities feel out of reach. Consider it a worthy transaction to find a desk that delights you. Remember, even necessity deserves to feel beautiful.
4. Face your life.
If your desk currently rests against the wall, does it ever feel like you "hit the wall" on projects or opportunities? In shui, the ideal placement for a desk is to face the doorway – a little off to the side instead of directly in front of the door. However, this arrangement isn’t economical in all spaces. So, to mitigate any work roadblocks, hanging a print of an open landscape on the facing wall can be liberating. Not only does this bring nature indoors – a symbol of growth and nourishment – but also, it provides plenty of room to embody and pursue all of your big ideas.
5. Mix with the living.
Living energy is the yin to technology’s yang. Our interior worlds often consist of hard edges and straight lines. Mama Nature has all the right curves – she's supple with flowing lines, textured surfaces and asymmetrical angles. To soften the manmade interpretations of the environment and bring balance into your surroundings, try incorporating plants, swirling prints, natural elements and colors. When your space feels vital, so will you!
p.s. How about setting up an enlivening creative space for your kids, too?