Friday, July 27, 2007

Better than Feng Shui

It's Tyrant Shui.

I don't believe in all that feng shui crap. But what I do believe in is making spaces work for me.

As one with a tendency towards anxiety and a tad bit of OCD, I can be particular about the spaces where I spend my time. I have to be, if I am ever going to be comfortable.

When I am uncomfortable in a certain space, I tend to be withdrawn and fidgety (more so than usual). When the feeling of comfort is abundant, I am more likely to engage, to entertain, and to fidget just a little less.

I think that's why I enjoy being home so much. I have complete control over the space, and it's perfect for me. Always safe and comfortable. And I am hardly ever fidgety around here.

In places other than my house, I'll tend to sit in the same chair in a room every time, choosing the chair that puts me in the spot I deem as most comfortable for me. Not that it's necessarily the most comfortable chair, or the best spot in the room. It's all about my comfort level in the room.

Don't worry, I'm not going to freak out if I don't get my chair, or if a room isn't entirely to my liking, or if I have to sit in a spot that isn't the most comfortable for me. Although . . . I might. So it's probably safest for everyone if you just give me my chair.

You just never know what might make me snap.

And yes, I pretty much sit in one of the two same spots every day in my house, too. Even though I do have more than two places to sit.

Anyway, I recently decided that Cupcake's office just wasn't working for me. And if I have to keep going in there to escape . . . . I mean, to seek counsel and direction on very serious work stuff, the room just really needs to be workable for me. As a protege, I need my protoger? protogette? protogee? to have an office that is comfortable place for me to . . . learn.

Since I have just a cube, there's really only one place for everything to go, and everything is usually covered in a substantial layer of paper anyway. So, even if I wanted to Tyrant Shui it, there's not much I could do.

The first cube I had at my office was a constant source of anxiety for me. I felt like I was out in the middle of the room, on display, all the time. My back was to everyone, which meant I was a prime target for sneak attacks from, you know, bad guys. There was nothing safe about that space. And consequently, it was a fairly unproductive year for me, I think for the sole reason that I was uncomfortable and on edge every day, just by being at me desk.

Who can work in those conditions?

The cube I have now is ideal for me (as far as cubes go, that is) because it's in the corner, I face the room (which makes me safe from surprise attacks from behind), and I'm by the window, so I get the natural light and the illusion of more space than I really have in my tiny cube.

But Cupcake's office is a completely different story. It was a shui nightmare. The furniture was all weirdly configured and arranged oddly, wasting space and just giving out bad vibes. It was dark because the furniture covered the window. And there was just no flow. No sensible way to be in the room and have a conversation without feeling just a bit on edge, or being obstructed by other objects in the room.

There was just little to no shui. And I just can't work like that.

So today, we Tyrant Shui-ed it. To make the room work better . . . for me.

And for Cupcake. Of course.

And I have decided that this Tyrant Shui is my new hobby. I need your spaces to work for me if I am to spend time in your spaces at any time.

Tyrant Shui is not based on any sort of logic or mystic spirit or spiritual mystery or really on anything deep at all. It is simply based on how I need the room to be to be comfortable for me. In reality, I have been doing this for years in my own home. I'm constantly identifying things in the house that I can move, or paint, or rearrange, or cover with a picture that will add a bit more peace into this space.

It can be as simple as moving a chair or swapping one vase for another to be the centerpiece on my dining table, or it can be more complicated like staining all of the doors in my hallway to get rid of more of the light-colored wood paneling that plagues my house (which incidentally, might be my next house project).

Last night, I worked up some schematics of possible arrangements for Cupcake's office. I came up with two very Tyrant Shui options, then a blank page and some furniture cutouts so that we could rearrange in ways other than my two options.

It was all drawn to scale, of course.

Today, we picked an arrangement based off of Option #2 (my personal preference) and we moved all of the furniture around the room.

At long last, I feel comfortable in that space. My angst lifted almost immediately . . . almost immediately after I lifted that ridiculously heavy printer and put it back on the Other Desk.

The key was to redirect the flow into the room, and to provide an arrangment that shifted focus to make full use of an unobstructed view to the window (for daydreaming, or hardcore strategic thinking). I optimized the space and I arranged the table and chairs for maximum cheeriness and peace when I have to be in there for, you know, official protege/prototype? protetician? protetographer? business.

The room is amazing, y'all. Too bad I don't get to keep it.

One room down, millions more to go.

Your room could be next for Tyrant Shui.

Don't worry. You'll thank me after you experience the difference that Tyrant Shui can make in your life . . . and more important, in my life.


1 comment:

kmsqrd said...

Don't feel too badly. I can no longer look into my old cell because the guy currently residing there took away most of it's functionality.