To create boundaries between your personal life and professional life, it is best to designate an area for your home office. Create a work area that you love, that inspires you to be your most authentic, innovative, and dynamic self.
The biggest challenges
Avoiding distractions and temptations is crucial for your productivity.
Lost in the noise of kids homeschooling, pets playing, your social media notifications beeping? In some cases, you need to set up soundproofing, or at least wear headphones.
In most cases smart scheduling and help from other family members will do.
Lost in the Bermuda-triangle of your tv set- remote control- comfy sofa? Glued to the snack drawer in the kitchen?
Finding the right space and mindset for work may be a little more challenging.
An inspiring design dare blends your chosen office space with the rest of the home in a way that it is inviting for you. Whatever your décor style may be- modern/ vintage/ classical-, it is all for YOU.
There is a variety of ways to get yourself in the right mindset for work. One of them is to initiate the appropriate space for it.
Another one is to dress up. As tempting as it may be to lounge around in your pj’s all day, changing for work will help you change into work mode. (Especially, when Zoom meeting are on the schedule.)
Feng Shui hint:
I do not recommend setting up your office area in your bedroom. No matter how organized it would be, your bedroom is NOT for work.
Photo Credit: congerdesign, Pixabay Database
The bare minimum
Are you curling up on the couch with your laptop trying to get work done?
When you delegate an area for work at home, it is easier (physically and mentally) to switch into work mode.
If you already have a designated space as the office, you can still reevaluate the situation. What is the best solution for all involved?
Sprucing up an unused nook/ closet or repurposing a room or even an outbuilding might be the perfect choice.
Choose a desk with a surface large enough for you. To avoid sitting for long periods of time: a sitting- standing desk is genius, it can be combined with a rise-fall chair.
Your monitor should be at eye-level to avoid strain on your neck.
Depending on how much you sit, a foldable chair or a barstool borrowed from the kitchen can be disastrous for your spine. Your chair must support your back ergonomically.
It does not have to be a rigid, plastic one. Look for a nice cushiony upholstered piece for comfort and style. Make a statement with a designer one, or an antique gem.
Your legs should have enough space.
If you are worried about the chair rolling over a rug, how about a wax-coated floorcloth instead?
Feng Shui hint:
Ideally, the desk should be as far from the door, as possible, but not in direct line with it. You should be able to see the door and the whole room.
If your back is to the door, and there is no way to change this setup, place a mirror on your desk or on the wall in a way that you can see behind you.
You must be aware of what is coming at you.
Images, patterns, colors can add zest to the most blah space.
You can use decorative frames, a grid/ a pinboard/ a clipboard to showcase cherished pictures, photos, drawings, cut-outs, lists- whatever is meaningful for YOU.
A piece of your own art will be a reminder of your creativity and resourcefulness.
Inspirational quotes, affirmations, mantras can elevate your collection to a higher level.
Wallpaper can be an amazing way to define the work area, even if it is only one wall, or just a section of a wall.
The psychology of color plays a huge part, either you want your nook to blend in with the rest of the home, or your room to stand out as a statement.
The effects of certain colors on your mood must be carefully considered. Want to be inspired, but not overly passionate? Cool, calm, collected, but evolving? Developing compassion, higher understanding, optimism? All these can be translated into colors!
(Here are a few examples:
- Blue: integrity, inner confidence, acting right in difficult times
- Green: renewal, growth, safety
- Yellow: boosting enthusiasm, optimism, positivity
- White: faith, possibility, creativity)
Pantone has chosen not one, but two colors for 2021: gray and bright yellow.
Feng Shui hint:
You can turn your whole wall/ room into a manifestation board, that will trigger your subconscious to find ways to nudge you to work towards your goals and desires.
So choose images consciously!
Keeping it organized
The impact of clutter and mess on the subconscious is devastating. Besides draining your energy, clutter can lead to confusion, foggy thinking, negative self-talk, feelings of low self-esteem/guilt/lack.
Smart storage is key to a high-functioning space. With today’s storage solutions, you can choose the absolute perfect system for you: one that is practical and visually pleasing.
Start a filing-system that works for you.
Have fun with picking files, storage units, cabinets, drawers, boxes, baskets, trunks, and tools. They can elevate not only your style, but your mood as well.
Upcycle old flea-market finds by sandpapering and repainting or wallpapering them.
You should be able to find everything quickly, so organize things by your convenience.
Personal items make your nook more inviting, but too many accessories can lead to distraction. Go easy on the quirky trinkets.
A color palette limited to 2-3 colors can help with a more cohesive look.
Keeping items stacked and using the space vertically will free up valuable desk space.
Discipline yourself to put things away when you don’t need them and empty your trash bin every day.
In addition to regular cleaning, space clearing is also important.
You don’t want cables swirling around the whole room, so the furniture layout needs to follow the sockets.
Mind the background showing during those Zoom calls.
Be mindful about virtual organization as well. Get on an online planner to keep track of to-do-lists and goals, short and long term. Creating and maintaining files and folders most accessible on your computer is crucial for saving time.
Feng Shui hint:
By keeping your environment clutter-free and organized, you ensure that the energy flows free, and you can be relaxed, but focused on your journey to abundance in the highest forms.
Photo Credit: Trinity Nguyen, Unsplash Database
Light and more light
Sunlight boosts the immune system, improves circulation, increases serotonin and endorphins, balances hormones; makes us more positive, energetic, productive.
It is imperative to let in as much natural light as possible. Clean your windows regularly and do not block them. Hang sheer and light curtains, if at all.
Lighter colors, a neutral floor, shiny surfaces will help with bringing more light to the area. Place your desk by a window, if possible. Getting away from the computer screen, looking in the distance through the window from time to time is good for your eyes.
If you don’t have enough natural light, you need good artificial lights. With smart bulbs you can determine what type and how much light is produced.
A task light can be fixed to the wall to have more space on the desk. You can choose a lamp with wireless charging. Be mindful of the glare on the screen(s).
Feng Shui hint:
A blocked window (from inside or outside) can cause frustration, stagnation. Brighten your hopes for the future by removing the block(s).
An environmentally friendly office improves health and increases cognitive thinking and productivity.
Using non-toxic paints for the walls, and reusable, sustainably sourced products and materials are a must.
Natural materials are not only always trendy, but of better quality, and make interiors look welcoming. Besides the trusted favorites, wood, bamboo, cork, why don’t you experiment with chic metals, or stones, that vary in texture and color? Throw in a few elements of surprise as well: gemstone, feather, shell.
There are numerous practical ways to be eco-friendly in your office:
- making recycle a priority
- setting your computer, so it goes into hibernation mode when you are away from the workstation
- switching to energy saving devices (LED bulbs use 40% less energy and last much longer than regular bulbs; smart power strips automatically turn off devices not in use)
- utilizing recycled paper, and both sides of it, or taking notes electronically
- EMF protection solutions.
Bringing in plants and flowers is the most amazing way to feel energized, function better, and be in a better mood. They can reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, pain, help us with concentration, memory, productivity, and connecting better with others. Aloe, spider plant, snake plant is the best for offices. You can have different types of plants on a vertical garden/ greenery wall. (Do your research on plants before placing them into a certain area/ room, especially if there are small children and pets around.)
Feng Shui hint:
Avoid thorny and fake plants. Get rid of dead plants immediately. Have healthy, vibrant plants, with leaves growing upward for generating good energy flow.
Photo Credit: Free-Photos, Pixabay Database
When organizing your time, prioritize taking breaks regularly to ground yourself, at least every 2 hours. Setting a timer is a helpful way to remind yourself to stand up and step away from your computer, drink some water, and recharge your batteries. Plan your breaks in advance:
- switch to another style of music if you work listening to music
- do some breathing exercises
- do yoga
- stretch, exercise
- take a brisk walk outside
- chat with a friend
- play with the dog
(Snack sensibly! You don’t want to gain weight just because you are working from home.)
Often, you need to manage stress that may not even be yours but coming at you from anxious coworkers at virtual meetings. Aromatherapy is an effective way to remedy body-mind-spirit. Nature sounds are incredibly relaxing. Spending time in nature is the number one way to raise your vibration. Occasional digital sabbaticals are strongly advised for a peace of mind.
Feng Shui hint:
Your own energy influences the energy of your place, and vice versa. Watch your thoughts, emotions, words, actions. Keep them hopeful, positive, balancing, healing, nurturing, encouraging, inspirational.
Using Feng Shui to pave the way to success and abundance
Align with the natural energy flow. Infuse your home office with auspicious energies, following the principles of Feng Shui when choosing the area, setting up the furniture, picking and placing colors, patterns, textures, items.
Take into consideration the balance of the Five Elements, the harmony of Yin and Yang, and the Bagua as your guide.
Good energy flow in your space will lead to you prospering in all areas of life.
Photo Credit For Featured Image: Slava Keyzman, Unsplash Database
Julianna Kocsis is a Feng Shui Specialist, Organizational Expert, Intuitive Vibrational Catalyst, Textile Design Archivist. She is also the founder of Talila Consulting. Bringing Order and Harmony to your Home, Work and Life.
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