Using the Feng Shui Octagon, or Octagon for short, is an instrumental element of Feng Shui analysis. It enables you to discern how the parts of your space (home, property, and so on) are affecting the corresponding parts of your life. All spaces affect you; the important question is this: Which spaces affect what? The Octagon provides a vital key to answering this question.

The Octagon is an energetic map (a tool used to diagnose energy qualities in your space) that applies the wisdom of the I-Ching (an ancient book of Chinese knowledge) to human spaces. Using the Octagon, you divide any definable space, such as your home or lot, into nine sections — eight sides plus the center — each with its own corresponding set of influences and energies. Note: A definable space must have specific boundaries and a discernible main entrance.

I recommend you commit the Octagon to memory so you can apply it mentally to your rooms and home. Doing so helps you more easily discern their Feng Shui qualities.

The Octagon divides the floor plan into nine parts (traditionally called guas in Chinese). Each of the parts (or Life Areas) hosts a different energy corresponding to a specific aspect of your life. If your home is square, the sizes of these parts are equal, like a tic-tac-toe grid. In irregularly shaped homes, the sizes of the parts may vary a little. (Although the actual size of each of the nine parts is less important than what’s happening energetically in them.) The Octagon enables you to first locate the parts of your life you need to (or just want to) work on and then proceed with knowledge and awareness.

For example, suppose you need more money (hard to believe, I know). First, use the Octagon to locate the part of your home that affects wealth; then assess the energy conditions of this area and make changes or adjustments (cures) to improve its energy. (This process is Feng Shui in action; you use it throughout the book to make simple and effective changes.)

The nine Life Areas of the Octagon and their corresponding locations in your environment are as follows (orient yourself from the main entrance of the space):

  • Helpful People: Located in the right-front area of the space
  • Career: Located in the center front
  • Knowledge (Self-Development): Located in the left front
  • Family: Located in the center-left side
  • Wealth (Money): Located in the back left
  • Fame (Reputation): Located in the back center
  • Marriage (Partnership): Located in the back right
  • Children: Located in the center-right side
  • Health: Located in the center of the Octagon

In Feng Shui, everything is energetic and interrelated with everything else.