Do restaurants and fast food establishments use Feng Shui or at least some of its principles when designing a successful profitable business? Absolutely yes! Here is how can you apply that information to your own home so you can experience less stress, better relationships and more prosperity.

A great deal of thought goes into the design of all business establishments. In fact, many have teams of people that do nothing but design; choosing colors, furnishings and décor. People like Donald Trump, CEO of the Trump Organization, and Richard Branson, CEO of Virgin Atlantic Airways, are huge fans of Feng Shui, using it in their business endeavors. Why wouldn’t a company like McDonalds do the same?

The next time you go out to eat, whether it is a fast food or fine dining establishment, take a close look around. Can you tell what they are trying to convey with the colors on the walls and flooring, the type of furniture available for your dining comfort and the lighting? Everything revolves around these three key components — and each element has its own purpose and message.

Colors are Key to McDonald’s Success

One of McDonald’s keys to success is to attract consumers with or without children (preferably with) who want a quick inexpensive meal that fits in with a hectic busy lifestyle. They realized their customer would usually be in a hurry; in fact what they were providing was fast food. So, one of their requirements was to use colors in their eating areas that were cheerful and upbeat but also would not encourage customers to linger. The choice was red, yellow and white – the highest energy least pleasing colors that would encourage everyone to sit down, eat quickly and leave. This encourages a high number of sales and fast turnovers – key in a volume-driven business. A lesser known fact is that red also encourages over-eating which may have been an unintended consequence of their color choices.

The Furniture Comfort Option

Furnishings at McDonalds use the same consistent language as the colors. It is durable enough for children, easy to clean and just comfortable enough for the construction crew down the street and for traveling seniors to enjoy a short stop for a meal and a restroom break. However, it is not comfortable enough to linger over a second cup of coffee. It is all about durability, cleanliness and turnover. This also aligned with their need to provide a reasonable product at a decent price quickly, get it into the hands of the consumer and then have them leave so the next set of consumers can be served.

The Lighting Says it All

The true test of fine dining versus fast food eating is in the lighting. When the lights are dim, the tables are set with linen and the chairs soft and comfortable, it begs for you to stay and linger over another glass or two of wine, and perhaps coffee and dessert. But when the lighting is bright white with lots of windows, you know you have set foot into a fast food establishment. McDonalds scores a perfect ten in this category as well. Its lighting design is matched flawlessly with its overall need for high volume and high customer turnover.

Their overall design strategy employed a large number of Feng Shui strategies, everything from color, to the flow of energy throughout, furnishings and lighting – and helped their profitability. Having a better understanding of what they do to should help you decide what to do or not do in your own home in the kitchen or dining room eating areas.

If you want to be comfortable and linger over cups of coffee and visit with friends, neighbors and relatives then definitely do not use the high energy colors, uncomfortable chairs and bright lights in your home that McDonalds uses. For that lingering relaxing atmosphere try some of the following:

• Soft lighting and candles
• Upholstered comfortable chairs
• Earth tone or soft green colors

If you have a little breakfast nook in your home that is your quick cup of coffee or snack area there you may wish to place a couple of brighter accent colors to give it a bit more energy.

Use Feng Shui principles to convey your own meaning and create an ambiance that suits your personality and objectives.

© Pat Heydlauff, all rights reserved 2014

Author's Bio: 

Pat Heydlauff, a “flow of focus” expert, speaker and consultant designs home and workplace environments that unleash the flow of focus and maximize performance while creating balance and increasing prosperity. She is author of the forthcoming book, Engage, Unleash the Power of Focus and published books, Feng Shui, So Easy a Child Can Do It and Selling Your Home with a Competitive Edge. Contact her at 561-744-2666 or