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Whether you are working from home or working at the office, your work desk plays a key role in your professional life.

According to Kellie Richardson, your work desk is integral to your career and financial success in more ways than you realise and it all comes down to the art of Fung Shui.

Kellie Richardson is a highly respected interior designer, creator of the term ‘Botox for your home’ and founder of Melbourne-based home design company Kurved by Design. Richardson emphasises that according to the principles of Feng Shui, there are simple things you can do to your work desk to create more energy and personal success.

Feng Shui is the ancient Chinese art of geomancy and it uses energy flow to harmonise and balance peace and prosperity in the home.

“As an interior designer, I am drawn to Feng Shui because integrating these elements into a home and your life creates a space that is not only harmonious but also extremely positive and aesthetic,” she said.

Trusted by clients and respected by those in the industry, Richardson is particularly well known for incorporating elements and principles of Feng Shui into her design concepts and she shares some of her tips on how to give your career the oomph it needs by changing up your work desk.

In 2020, Richardson won the global CEO Excellence award in 2020 for ‘Best Property Styling and Interior Design Business’. She is regularly asked to comment on all matters relating to Feng Shui and the home.

“Organising your work desk using Feng Shui principles can help create a harmonious and productive environment,” Richardson said.

Richardson has outlined some tips to optimise your workspace according to Feng Shui.

Desk placement

“The location of your desk matters. Ideally you should position your desk so that you can see the door while working with your back to a solid wall. This is known as the ‘command position’ and helps you feel in control and secure. Avoid placing your desk directly in line with the door,” Richardson said.

Remove clutter

“Clutter is not good for the mind so it is good to keep your desk clean and free of clutter. Clutter can block the flow of energy (chi) and create feelings of stress and distraction. Use organisers, trays, and bins to keep everything neat and orderly,” Richardson said.

Follow the Bagua Map

“The Feng Shui Bagua Map divides your desk into nine areas, each associated with a different aspect of life. Arrange your desk items to align with these areas. Draw up an image of your desk and use a grid comprising nine areas to identify where to locate items,” Richardson said.

Wealth (upper left): Place a plant or a symbol of prosperity in this area

Fame (upper centre): Display your nameplate, awards or something that inspires recognition in this area

Relationships (upper right): Place photos or objects representing relationships in this area

Family (left centre): Use family photos or items that remind you of your support system in this area

Health (centre): Keep this area clear to represent overall well-being

Creativity (right centre): Place items related to creativity and inspiration, like art supplies or a journal in this area

Knowledge (lower left): Keep books, reference materials or educational tools here

Career (lower centre): Place your computer or items related to your career goals in this area

Helpful people and travel (lower right): Keep a phone, contact lists or symbols of travel and helpful individuals in this area of the desk.

Include natural elements

“It is important to incorporate natural elements into your workspace as this creates balance,” Richardson said.

“Look for things such as plants, wooden desk accessories or a bamboo item, a small water fountain or a picture of water, metal desk accessories or a metallic photo frame, earthy items such as stones, crystals or pottery and finally the fire element, a small lamp, candles (real or LED), or items in red or orange.”

Use colour

“Use colours that promote a calming and productive atmosphere. Light blues and greens are soothing, while shades of red and yellow can energise. Avoid overly dark or bright colours that might be distracting or overwhelming,” Richardson said.

Consider lighting

“Good lighting is essential for a positive work environment. Natural light is best, so position your desk near a window if possible. Supplement with a good quality desk lamp to avoid straining your eyes,” Richardson added.

Personalise your work desk

“Style your desk in a way that suits you. Personalise your space by adding personal touches that make you happy and motivated, such as family photos, artwork or inspirational quotes. However, keep it balanced to avoid clutter,” Richardson said.

Maintain air quality

“Clean fresh air is good for the mind. Keep the air fresh and circulating. If you are in an office and don’t have control over the air flow, use air-purifying plants like spider plants, peace lilies or snake plants. Open windows when possible, or use an air purifier,” Richardson said.

Ergonomic setup

“Ensure your desk and chair are set up ergonomically to promote comfort and health. A comfortable workspace supports better energy flow and reduces physical strain,” Richardson said.

Maintain your workspace

“Regularly clean and reorganise your desk to keep the energy fresh and flowing. Remove items you no longer need and update your space as necessary to reflect your current goals and interests,” Richardson said.

Avoid a glass desk

“In Feng Shui, the choice of materials for your work desk is crucial because different materials can influence the flow of energy (chi) in your workspace. A glass work desk is generally not recommended in Feng Shui for several reasons,” Richardson said.

“Firstly, glass is considered cold and uninviting. Glass desks are seen as lacking in support and stability because glass is transparent and fragile. A solid, opaque desk provides a sense of grounding and stability, which is important for focus and productivity. If you have a glass desk, place a cloth over the top to cover the glass.

“Solid surfaces help contain and direct energy, whereas glass surfaces allow energy to pass through and dissipate. This can lead to a feeling of instability and scattered energy, making it harder to concentrate and be productive. By placing a cover over the glass, you are maintaining good energy flow which is critical for productivity and success.”

Richardson emphasised that by following these Feng Shui, you can create a work desk that enhances your focus, productivity, and overall well-being.

About Kurved by Design

Since 2016, Kurved by Design, founded by Kellie Richardson, has provided Melbourne with a range of home design services. The company umbrella comprises five different companies: interior design, property staging, retail furniture and homewares, property maintenance and its interior design academy. Its vast reach has made it a ‘truly one-of-a-kind company. In 2020, Richardson won the global CEO Excellence award in 2020 for ‘Best Property Styling and Interior Design Business’.