Feng Shui is the ancient Chinese art of arranging objects in order to affect the environment in a positive way. Now I’ll bet you’re wondering what the heck Feng Shui has to do with writing, right? Believe it or not, not so very long ago I would’ve looked at a title like this one and thought the same thing. Oh, I had read a Feng Shui book or two, and thought about applying bits and pieces of the philosophy to my home but I didn’t follow through. That is until I started doing research for an article on how the practice could help my writing. I was stunned to discover that many writers use Feng Shui techniques to improve their writing life.
Clear the Clutter
One of the first things you hear about when you begin reading about Feng Shui is how important it is to clear the clutter. That’s right, the most important thing to remember is to “pick up your toys.” The idea around this is that clutter blocks the energy or chi from freely moving in your work space and home, and as such allows that energy to become stagnant which can affect us as writers by causing things like writer’s block, and being uninspired.
One way you can clear the clutter is to start by putting all your loose papers into three piles. One for what you have to keep, one for what you’re not sure whether to keep or not, and one for the papers you can recycle. This makes it easy to go through your papers quickly. Then make sure you file or in some other fashion put away what you need to keep, and then find a place for what you’re not sure about until you can move into one of the other piles, and of course shred and or recycle the final pile.
Once you’ve done this, it’s just a matter of picking up anything else and putting it away that is laying around, particularly around your home office or workspace, although it helps to employ this technique throughout your home.
Clear off Your Desk
Yes, I know it sounds really weird. However, in order to put those things on your desk which will help you to be a better and more productive writer, you first need to clear your desk off.
If you have a file for where you keep papers relating to your current projects, or disk holders, staplers and tape dispensers, this is a good time to find another place for them, perhaps a small table to the left or right of your desk. Believe it or not having a clear desk space except for a few small items helps you to stay focused and concentrate on your writing.
The Bagua Map
Some items you can add to your desk space are, quartz crystals (these help specifically with concentration), or a small water fountain which can help by adding positive ions to the air, and the sound is relaxing as well. Another good possibility, particularly if you have a book out is a framed copy of your book cover. This reminds you of your successes so far and is another way to help you stay focused.
You can even take this one step further by visualizing what is termed a bagua map, which is a rectangular map with 9 equal sections. The bottom three squares from left to right are Knowledge & Self Cultivation, Career, and Helpful People and Travel. The middle three from left to right are Health & Family, Center, and Creativity & Children. The top three are Wealth & Prosperity, Fame & Reputation, and Love & Marriage.
You can place your quartz crystal in the Creativity & Children square in order to help increase your creativity. You could also put it in your Career area to enhance conditions with your career. This might be especially helpful to a beginning writer trying to jumpstart his/her career.
If you have decided to have a framed copy of your book cover on your desk, in order to increase sales you could put this in the Wealth & Prosperity or Career part of the bagua map on your desk.
Flowing water can draw money to you according to Feng Shui, so putting this in the Wealth & Prosperity area is one way to possibly increase your sales as well.
These are just a few ways you can arrange your desk according to Feng Shui in order to help you with your writing career.
A few other basics of Feng Shui are not to have your back to the door. This fosters a feeling of being watched, and of not knowing who might come up behind you which is uncomfortable. Since it is difficult to concentrate if you are worrying about such things, it is instead a good idea to have your desk situated in such a way that you can see the door. If this is not possible, one way to correct the problem according to Feng Shui is to hang a small mirror so that you can glance at it and see your doorway. That way you can see if someone is entering your home office.
Another tenet of Feng Shui is to have a wall at your back. This helps you to feel supported in your writing. Even better hang a picture of a mountain there, and double the feeling of security.
Want to keep the good energy flowing through your office space? Keep the clutter to a minimum. Open windows periodically and circulate the air in your space when possible. Don’t have a window? Open the door to your office and the closest window to it, the air will eventually circulate through your home office. This coupled with a small desktop water fountain will keep the energy or chi flowing smoothly in your home office or work space.
These are just a few ideas for using Feng Shui to help you with your writing career, there are many others which can be found in numerous articles and books which are available. I have personally tried the ones mentioned here and found them to be very effective in helping me to stay focused. I’ve also noticed an increase in what I am offered for articles which I’ve written, and an increase in book sales. So, what have you got to lose? A little time maybe while you set everything up, but I think you’ll find the benefits of Feng Shui far outweigh that little bit of time you lose initially in getting started.