Feng Shui Your (Desk) Stress Away!

Although there’s still snow on the ground, spring cleaning is in full bloom at our firm. Blame it on the New Year, but most of us feel like it’s time to declutter our lives…and our desks! We create resolutions focused on our body, but our mind needs some loving too! It’s time we overhaul our desk space and create a conducive environment to set the stage for accomplishing our professional goals in 2017!

A professional habit of mine is maintaining an aesthetically pleasing office desk that awakens all of my senses. It might sound like hippie-living (OK, it does sound like hippie-living…), but Ayurvedic practitioners preach that you are likely to feel healthier in both body and mind when you properly balance all of your senses.

Unfortunately, it’s not always so easy to stay balanced. Naturally, people tend to favor certain senses over others. Most people place a fragrant candle on their desk and call it a day. Stop for a moment and analyze your desk space. Which senses do you tend to overemphasize? Which senses do you neglect? What items on your desk immediately become stressors, and what objects are pleasing to your eyes? Some quick and easy ways to bring accent colors to your desk layout include using fun coasters or a colored stapler, keyboard, and mousepad!

Now that you have a list of items that can trigger all of your senses, let’s create a desk layout using the basic principles of the ancient Chinese practice, feng shui!

Here is a great starter layout for your desk that I will help you breakdown:

Back Left: Prosperity (blues, purples, greens) Examples: Plants, candles, diffusers (not too fragrant!)

Back: Fame/Reputation (fire colors) Examples: Desk lamp, framed diplomas and awards (always keep physical reminders of your accomplishments within eyesight!)

Back Right: Relationships (love colors) Examples: Picture of significant other; rose quartz

Right: Creativity (metals) Examples: Pen holder, paper clip tray, stapler, mousepad

Front Right: Contacts (gray colors) Examples: Phone, business card holder

Front: Career/Energy (power colors like black) Examples: Computer, monitor, keyboard

Front Left: Knowledge (earth tones) Examples: Reference books, inbox, active projects

Left: Family (wood) Examples: Framed photos of family members

Here is my current desk, utilizing the above layout:

Feel energized already?! Now that you have the layout, let’s add our office desk to things that need trimmed of fat this New Year!

Blue Light Glasses…All the Cool Kids are Wearing Them!

Does this sound like your typical day?

You wake up and immediately tap on your cellphone.

You browse the news on your tablet during your commute.

You text your boss that you’ll be late to work.

You diligently stare at your computer screen until 5 o’clock.

You come home from work and catch the evening news.

You end your day in bed binging Netflix on your laptop.

What do all of these things have in common?


What is blue light?

Blue light is the highest energy of all visible light, penetrating deeper into the eye than any other light. In appropriate doses, natural blue light is beneficial. For example, the sun emits a small level of blue light (this is why the sky looks blue!). Blue light, in small doses, boosts alertness, elevates moods, and regulates your sleep cycle. However, in the world we live in today, we are subjecting ourselves to unnatural levels of artificial sources of blue light. In such doses, blue light has been shown to cause premature damage to the retina and other age-related disorders. Our eyes’ natural filters simply cannot protect against prolonged exposure to artificial blue light.

Scary huh?

Even scarier is that most of us spend the majority of our day staring directly at a digital screen. In some cases, we stare at a screen for over 6 hours straight! Ever wonder how safe all of this is for the future of your eyesight? Not so safe, apparently.

Why has no one talked about the dangers of blue light before?

The recent growth in digital screen technology has created today’s widely used LED back-lit devices that emit very strong blue light waves. The wide-spread popularity in such devices has dramatically increased our exposure to these dangers. We are truly the first generation of guinea pigs for analyzing how much damage blue light is causing. Only recent studies, including a profound study done by Harvard researchers, revealed that blue light can in fact cause serious long-term damage to our retinas and increase our risk to develop several types of cancers and heart disease.

So, how can we limit our exposure to artificial blue light in a society that demands our daily use of LED back-lit devices? BLUE LIGHT GLASSES!

What exactly are blue light glasses?

We wear sunglasses to protect our eyes from harmful UV rays, so why not protect ourselves against blue light!? Blue light glasses help filter out the blue light emitted by digital screens such as computers, tablets, cellphones, televisions, and fluorescent lighting. Blue light glasses take the strain off your eyes and reduce eye fatigue, ultimately leading to less mid-day work headaches.

Buyer beware: not all blue light glasses are made the same! Stay away from cheap knockoffs. Pixel Eyewear (http://www.pixeleyewear.com) is my favorite brand, because they have very little tint to them. They might seem pricey, but your eyesight is worth it! An added bonus, these glasses are super chic and look like ordinary prescription glasses! For those who wear prescription glasses, ask your optometrist for protective ophthalmic lenses with a special filter to reflect the high energy blue light penetration.

Check out my fellow colleagues who have joined me in protecting our eyesight!