How To Manage Clutter On The Work Desk

Clutter is never a friend of feng shui.

In extreme cases, it can create harmful negative energy and cause sickness. But what’s more of a concern is how it creates a mess of energy and disrupts the flow of chi.

Just look at it this way.

If you are brewing a cup of tea, would you throw loose tea leaves into the teacup in a clutter, or use tea bags to manage that clutter of tea leaves?

First and foremost, your work desk should be relatively neat and free of clutter by default.

Why would you want to display your messy tendencies to your colleagues anyway.

If you find that your work desk is constantly cluttered, during or after office hours, or even perpetually at any time of the day, and have a feeling that it is affecting you one way or another, then decluttering it might just be the metaphysical solution to your problems at the workplace.

Here are some of the common factors that cause clutter and how to manage them.

Huge stacks of paperwork

There was a time when having piles of documents lying on the desk is something to be proud of as it shows that one has a lot of stuff to do.

It implicitly implies how hardworking that staff is, how productive he is, and how important he is in the office.

But these days, it is just a sign of a slow worker who is struggling to perform and organize his job tasks efficiently.

However often times, it is just the nature of the job position and scope of work involved.

If you have to contend with piles of files and documentation regularly, don’t leave it in front of you at the office desk.

This frontal placement blocks your view and your ability to absorb positive energy.
Instead place them on the left side of the desk.

The tall stacks of paperwork on the left can stimulate presence of the green dragon to support your work proficiency.

Only place it on the right side if there is already an object on the left taller than the stacks of paperwork in height.

This is because the right is where the white tiger is. And it should not have a stronger presence than the dragon, baring exceptional circumstances.

Whatever you do, never place the piles of documents behind you.

Doing so symbolizes that you will always be pressed down by the weight of your work responsibilities.

Disorganized drawers

It is often recommended by feng shui experts that a quick shortcut method of clearing clutter on the table is to sweep everything into the drawer, close it, and forever be at peace.

However, many people take that suggestion too literally.

This little feng shui hack is like taking a chill pill to alleviate the symptoms of flu quickly. But it does not cure the illness. Leaving the source of the virus as it is will just be kicking the can down the road.

A drawer clogged up with stationary and and junk items can obstruct your opportunities for career progression.

Buy some of those drawer dividers and organize your stuff. And throw away that the thing that you don’t need while you are at it.

For drawers that hold documents, files and folders, take note that women should use the left drawer while men should use the one on the right side.

Flowers and plants

As we tend to love personalizing our workstations, flowers and green plants can often add that gentle touch of nature to the cubicle.

Whether they are potted, kept in a glass vase, or plastic plants, they should never have an overwhelming presence on the work desk.

This means that they should be Kept in smaller sizes.

Those displayed in vases with water should have the water changed as regularly as on a daily basis.

And for dying plants or wilted flowers, they should be discarded immediately.

There’s nothing worse than having death occur on the very desk in which you work.

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Big plants might sometimes be useful to act as a barrier to “poison arrows”. But they belong on the floor. Never on the desk.

Miscellaneous items

We can all get a little overboard when decorating our work areas with personal items.

After all we spend a third of our days sitting in the area. Why not make the limited space feel as homely as possible?

Some common items that clutter the desk are:

  • Framed photographs
  • Pen holders
  • Document trays
  • Charging stations and cables
  • Pencil sharpeners
  • etc

While the placement of most of these items on top of the desk makes perfect practical sense due to them being used regularly, it is important not to overwhelm the surface of the desk with all these miscellaneous items.

It is suggested that they be kept in the drawer as much as possible. Especially when you knock off for the day.

From a bird’s eye view of the table, if up to 40% of the surface space is taken up be items and junk, then it is too much.

The classic saying is that if a cash box is already full, there is simply no space for more money to be deposited.

The same concept applies to the desk surface space.

Either throw away things that you no longer need, or keep them whenever the work days end.

Feng shui enhancers

Some common feng shui enhancers for success, wealth, or recognition are often used as display items on desk to aid the luck of the user.

Some popular ones include:

While you can use them in the correct areas of the workplace as long as there adhere to feng shui principles, it is not recommended to have more than three of them on the desk.

And remember to place your symbolic items either at the wealth spots on the desk, or where your sheng chi direction is with reference to your kua number

Aged classic desks

If you find that your working table is an antique desk or one that is visibly aged, be mindful that it would be full of yin energy.

It could be the reason why you have been dozing off at work frequently with no remorse.

In this case, situating a table lamp to shine on it can help to energize it with yang energy.

If you have and office with windows and the desk is located in an area which natural light can enter through the window, consider leaving the blinds up one in a while when you are not around so that the desk can be exposed to natural yang energy.

Some people actually leave it in direct sunlight to allow it to absorb as much yang energy as possible.

If all else fails, a traditional way of creating yang energy is to rub the furniture with rock salt for cleansing.

Declutter clutter

If we allow metaphysics to step aside for a moment, do realize that clutter is not healthy for our mental state.

If you somehow dispute that, think about the last time you checked into a reputable hotel room.

Do you feel happy to see a clean and tidy room? Or do you feel unhappy at the sight of impeccable interiors?

I rest my case.

Considering that we need to be at our optimal mental state at the workplace, decluttering that mess and creating a clutter-free work area plays a sub-conscious role in helping us perform at our very best.

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