Updated: Apr 29, 2020
I've been fascinated with Feng Shui over the years, making small changes to my environment here and there as I read tips online. After seeing several great results for myself, I felt that it was time to dive deeper into the topic. I wanted to learn more about Feng Shui from real professionals, and help more people discover how Feng Shui can make BIG and positive changes to their lives!
I had the pleasure of interviewing Maureen Calamia, owner of Luminous Spaces.
Maureen has been teaching Feng Shui since 2009, practicing since 2005 and worked with her whole life. She has been seen in Realtor Magazine, GoodHousekeeping, The Huffington Post, Cosmopolitan and many more respected media outlets.
It was safe to say that reaching out to her would be a great decision. Sure enough, I reached out to Maureen and she was thrilled to do the interview! She got back to me right away, taking time out of her busy schedule to provide seriously insightful information. (Thanks Maureen!)
Enjoy the Interview!
For those who may be skeptical of Feng Shui, can you tell us what kinds of results you've seen with it over the years?
It is widely accepted that our homes are a direct reflection of us. We select our homes and then decorate them. Everything we bring into our homes is a result of a conscious (and often unconscious) decision that we have made.
In Feng Shui we have the tools to analyze spaces and see where there is too little energy or too much energy and how we can create more balanced and harmonious spaces.
Many clients experience quick relief in their life challenges after a consultation. For instance, one of my clients was looking to boost her finances and discover a new romantic relationship. Just a few days following her consultation, she was clearing some paper clutter and found a substantial insurance check that she didn’t realize she received! And, a man at the gym that she was interested in finally asked her out. I was invited to their wedding a few years later and they are ongoing clients of mine!
For some it takes a bit longer.
One client was having fertility issues and chose to work longer-term with me with Feng Shui consultation and coaching. Within eight months she conceived and is now pregnant with their second. It doesn’t work for everyone though. If you approach any energy healing with a large amount of skepticism you are setting yourself up to “prove” that Feng Shui doesn’t work. Your intention must be open to experience and focused.
How can hiring someone to help with Feng Shui benefit me? Can I do it all myself?
Feng shui can help with so many life challenges. I don’t think there is anything that cannot be addressed, at least not in my experience. Finances, reputation, health, career, family and children, friendships, creativity and inspiration, are but some of the areas I’ve been asked to help with.
There are two reasons why it’s best to hire a Feng Shui expert: First, there are many books and tutorials out there that can help you learn some of the techniques of Feng Shui. However, Feng Shui, as with most esoteric practices, really requires a teacher with experience to guide you.
Second, doing your own Feng Shui is like a psychotherapist diagnosing themselves. We cannot see our shadow areas. Nothing can take the place of working with an objective third party expert.
Is it OK to use under the beds for storage?
Generally, it is best to keep the area under the bed open to allow chi to circulate. However, depending on your home, you may need to use this space for storage. If that’s the case, then I suggest using it for non-sentimental items, such as linens and shoes. You don’t want photos of your old flame or curios from your deceased aunt under the bed!
Do you have a favorite Feng Shui trick?
Maybe this isn’t what you're expecting from a Feng Shui expert, but simply the addition of live, healthy plants can do absolute wonders for a room! Not only do they look beautiful, they stimulate a feeling of health and abundance, represent money, and refresh the air.
From a more feng shui perspective, I love hanging a crystal in the home office by the window to reflect rainbow light into the room. A great stimulation of energy for your work!
What is a common mistake you see people making in their homes that is affecting their good fortune or good energies?
Again, I have to mention plants. Actually, it’s the lack of live plants. Homes without live plants have a stagnate energy which contributes to low-level chi. Oddly enough, in that way it’s similar to a clutter-filled house! Low-level chi makes it hard for people to move forward in their lives. It is also difficult to feel relaxed and at ease. Plants are an important part for a feeling of well-being in any indoor space.
If I want to increase the money in my life or advance my career, do I need to look at my office at work or a space in my home when it comes to applying Feng Shui?
Great question! The answer is both. If you have a primary office outside of the home, then you should employ some basic Feng Shui techniques for proper support, as well as invite positive energy into your career. But the home office is also important. Even though this may not be utilized as much, this office will have a symbolic impact in your work. One client complained that he was passed over for a promotion several times. When I looked at his office space at home, he was literally using the same desk as he did as a small child! It even had a tiny wooden chair!
Can I apply Feng Shui to my marriage to improve it?
Yes. Feng Shui is a language of metaphor. As a Feng Shui practitioner, I want to see the symbolism in your bedroom but also what’s going on specifically in the Romance area of your home and your property. But there are many surprising things I would look at as well, such as the shape of your home and how it’s placed on the land. One partner may be at a disadvantage and feel squeezed out or dominated of the relationship.
To understand symbolism, let me give an example. One client, in her bedroom Romance corner, had three photos. One was a photo of her, one was a photo of her boyfriend, and in between them was a photo of the Grand Canyon! Yes, that is exactly how they described their current relationship: they were growing apart!
Do mirror placements really matter in my house?
Mirrors are an important part of Feng Shui, but it is important on where we place them in the home. Mirrors can remedy a missing area (according to the Feng Shui Bagua Map), help create a more spacious feeling in a tight space, and even provide depth to a wall that feels like it’s an obstacle. But you must be careful that whatever is reflected in the mirror is positive because mirrors also reflect whatever is there, right?
And just to answer a question I get all the time about the Feng Shui proper-ness of having a mirror in the bedroom: I do believe mirrors are okay as long as you sleep well. If sleep is an issue, cover or remove the mirror for a few weeks and see if that helps. The reason is that mirrors are very energetic because they reflect light into the room.
Anything else you want to add?
The ancient Chinese system of the Five Elements is an important foundation of Feng shui. They are Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. These Elements are in everything in the Universe and are not only physical matter (such as trees and minerals) but are energy (such as stillness and contracting), and within us, symbolizing different personality traits, such as courage and stability. You can find out what your primary Element is, which I call your True Nature, with a quiz on my website: https://www.luminous-spaces.com/what-is-your-true-nature-quiz/
Thank you so much Maureen!
Maureen's book, Creating Luminous Spaces (Conari Press 2018) is about how the Five Elements are a wonderful way to connect the outer natural world to our inner souls.
Link to book on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Creating-Luminous-Spaces-Elements-Balance/dp/1573247332
Maureen Calamia is a founder of Luminous Spaces Feng Shui School and Re-Nature Consulting as a corporate speaker and retreat leader. An expert in energy, mindfulness, stress management and consciousness, she helps her clients restore greater well-being by tapping into the Five Element archetypes. Maureen merges the wisdom of Feng Shui and earth energy healing with biophilia, our need to be truly connected to the natural world for joy and well-being. Author of Creating Luminous Spaces (Conari Press, 2018) she empowers others to discover and nourish their True Nature in their inner and outer spaces. Maureen has written for Huffington Post, Elephant Journal, MindBodyGreen, and OMTimes Magazine. She lives in St. James, NY. Visit Maureen at luminous-spaces.com