When I lived in Bali, I would sometimes entertain my Balinese friends with tales of life in the West. Something that would always evoke astonishment and a great deal of laughter was explaining to them what common practice it is in western offices to position desks up against the wall. They would find this absolutely hilarious, not just because it means that people sit facing a blank wall rather than having a view of some kind, but also because they all have their backs to each other. ‘Don’t people like each other?’ they would ask me, incredulously.
Most Balinese people have never heard of feng shui, let alone studied it, but being so etherically connected to the extraordinary land energies of their island, they all have an innate sense of what feels right and what doesn’t. They can feel the energy flows that feng shui knowledge is based on.
The best position for a desk
The reason I’m prompted to write about this, today of all days, is because all the furniture in my office has been moved to the centre of the room while redecorating, so instead of my usual expansive view, all I can see is two tall cupboards directly in front of me, creating the feeling of facing a solid wall. It’s only for a day, but the effect is stifling. I don’t even like to think about how it would affect me if I sat permanently like this.
The best position for a desk — as any Balinese person or western feng shui consultant knows — is facing into the room with a solid wall behind you and a view of all the doors and windows in the room. Sitting diagonally opposite (catercorner to) the door is better still, and is known in feng shui as the “command position”. It is always necessary, of course, to first check that this will not place you in a geopathically or electromagnetically stressed area that could be harmful to your health. This can be tested for by dowsing for earth lines and using special meters to measure electromagnetic fields (EMFs).
If you visit the offices of successful executives, you’ll often find that they have intuitively placed their desk in the command position of the room. In fact it’s rare to meet achievers of any kind who sit looking at a wall. Facing an insurmountable obstacle generally has the effect of quashing a person’s spirit rather than inspiring them to do great things.
The worst position for a desk
The worst desk position of all is sitting with your back to a door. The explanation most often cited for this is that sitting in this position releases the stress hormone cortisol, whereas sitting facing a door releases the feel-good hormone oxytocin. Feng shui masters have known about this beneficial effect for centuries.
What can you do if you are not able to move your desk to a better position? In some cases there are feng shui remedies for this, and in some cases not. I don’t give personalized feng shui advice from a distance because there are too many things that can get missed that way, so please don’t email to ask. The best I can suggest, if you’re concerned, is to find a feng shui practitioner in the area where you live who is also proficient at dowsing and has professional equipment to check levels of EMFs. At the very least, bear all this information in mind next time you set up a desk in a new home or job so you can make wiser choices for yourself.
Copyright © Clear Space Living Ltd 2013