It is a rainy Monday morning. The radio on the drive was mostly annoying, rambling DJ’s while sipping a cup of mediocre coffee. You make your return to a drab grey office with tan-colored cubicles with manilla envelope accents. It doesn’t exactly set you up for a highly productive day at work.

Now, imagine walking through the doors and entering a fresh, open office with pear green colors, a reclaimed wood accent wall, lower-to-the-ground desk walls, and maybe a ping pong table for some mental cleansing.

If the latter sounds more appealing, it’s because a shade of green can help alleviate anxiety and shorter desk walls can relieve the feeling of being “trapped”. Such small changes can yield huge changes in productivity and morale.

You have likely heard or read about the principles of “feng shui” design which incorporates the 5 natural elements; wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. The feng shui elements interact between themselves in certain ways, generally defined as the Productive and Destructive cycles.

Each element is represented by a specific color, and color is the easiest way to use the 5 elements principle to bring more harmony into your workspace.

Here is the color correspondence of each of the five elements:

Wood = Green, Brown
Fire = Red, Bold Yellow, Orange, Purple, Pink
Earth = Light Yellow, Sandy/Earthy, Light Brown
Metal = White, Gray
Water = Blue, Black

Each feng shui color represents and promotes different things for a space. When choosing to paint an office room, consider a couple of questions.

  1. What services does your business provide?
  2. What ideals do you want to convey?

Red gives invokes energy, passion, and prosperity.
Some may feel that painting an office space red is initially fun, but soon the color becomes both overwhelming and unappealing. For that reason, red is generally not a color recommended for a workspace and should be limited to an accent wall or go beyond it.

Orange invokes activity, cheerfulness, vibrancy, and being social.
In an office environment, it can be quite difficult to “turn off” distractions and commit attention to tasks, but orange stimulates concentration, promotes organization and encourages productivity. The intensity and brightness of the color defines how stimulating or soothing a specific shade is. For example, a soft orange will create a warm, welcoming and energizing office space. A stronger shade would best be used as an accent to complement neutral color palettes, rather then on an entire wall.

Yellow invokes happiness, optimism, expansion, and intelligence.
Yellow is one of the most cheerful shades and it often recommended for office spaces as it’s renowned for boosting people’s mood and stimulating creativity. If you’re running a design business, for example, painting your walls a pleasant yellow tint will encourage creative thinking, inspiring your employees to come up with great and unique ideas.

Green invokes health, newness, growth, and relaxation.
Green is often considered one of the best paint colors for office spaces, especially when people work long hours. In fact, Google tends to use a lot of vibrant greens their workspaces. But too much of it may slow down productivity, so use it only on accent walls. Pairing it with a yellow or orange is a brilliant idea to encourage productivity and give your office space a sense of balance.

Blue invokes calm, peace, and clarity.
If you Google “the most productive color”, every result seems to suggest that it is blue. It’s perfect if you do mind work all day because it encourages productivity. By painting your office a light, soothing shade of blue and spicing it up with rich, stimulating hues like yellow, orange or red, you can introduce emotion while boosting productivity, attention span and mood.

Purple invokes imagination, mystery, and spiritual matters, but isn’t used as much in feng shui. Used in an office space, it can put people to sleep. Not something you want if you’re looking to increase productivity.

White represents cleanliness, purity, innocence, and focus.
You can never go wrong with white, but you can overdo it. Stark white walls and ceiling can give your workers a “padded call” type of feeling. You want your employees to come into work energized and ready to start the day! So if you go with white, throw an accent wall in there to break it up.

Black embodies power, wealth, sophistication, and courage.
Black is one of the fastest rising colors for an office space. Again, you’ll want it in small doses. Try some black trim or a black accent wall and pair the color with a vibrant green or orange to keep it from feeling too melancholy. Black is also a great color to use on a super high ceiling or industrial space that may otherwise feel a bit too grand.

Brown symbolizes earthiness, stability, comfort, and nurturing.
It’s easy to push brown aside for brighter, flashier colors. But it’s shades are expansive and range from rich dark chocolate to gold-tinged tones to modern taupes. Much like the effect of green on the workplace, brown is grounding, perfect for a grounded, creative space.

The placement of these colors in the feng shui bagua is important. Click here to learn more about office feng shui.

Whichever type of business you’re in, the color of your workspace sends a message and sets a tone. The right feng shui placement of colors can alleviate stress, improve productivity, and help people make business relationship connections.

Our painters are highly skilled, reliable, and professional. We work with your schedule and preferences to create an environment for your business to thrive. Contact us today to schedule your quote.