What are you? Fire, Wood, Earth, Metal or Water?

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What are you? Fire, Wood, Earth, Metal or Water?

3rd July 2013 11:00 AM

Author: Katy Henry

Have you ever wondered why people react in different ways to situations?  Do you find yourself puzzled as to why you find it easier to connect with some more than others?

Do you know someone who struggles to make decisions?

Or is too sensitive and wears their heart on their sleeve?

Maybe puts others before themselves too often?

Perhaps someone who appears overly critical and judgmental?

Or are lacking the motivation and drive to live life?

We all have the 5 elements within us, and therefore the capacity to behave as above when we are ‘out of balance’.   What you will find is that we have a default position to which we most frequently defer.  The connection with yin and yang is whether or not we live life in excess or deficiency.  Neither is ideal and we should strive to create the right balance between the two. 

For example a water type living in excess may be unable to take their foot off the pedal and slow down in life despite feeling tired and worn out, for fear of being unable to live life to the fullest.  The contrasting position for a water type person, living in deficiency, maybe that they feel stuck in a rut and unable to muster the drive and willpower to go forward and fulfill their ambitions.  In balance a water type will take a step back, reflect on the bigger picture and re-energize to explore alternative routes to reach their destination safely.

Interestingly the wood type person approaches life and challenges very differently.  When a wood type is out of balance to excess, they act in a more forthright manner and lead the way with a decisive plan of action and a clear goal in mind.  This goal is achieved with very little or no flexibility and may become irritable with others around them.  Whereas a deficient wood type may struggle to make decisions, seem timid amongst others and be unable to offer any opinion or give input at work.  They will go out of their way to avoid conflict, often leading to resentment and pent up frustration.  The beauty of a wood type in balance is benevolence.  A person who is able to guide, lead and inspire groups of people to achieve a common goal and work for the best interests of all people.

Earth types are all about give and take.  One half will give out in excess, not just in time, but in energy and nurturing of others, which will have a negative effect on their health and well being.  The other half will take and take and take.  No matter what you do for them they will struggle to feel emotionally and physically content and fulfilled.   Of course, in balance, an earth type is able to nurture and give to everyone around them but is also able to give to themselves and receive nurturing from others.

Respect where respect is due to the metal type person.  The metal type person, in most aspects of life, will find it hard to let go, be it emotionally, physically or mentally when living in excess.  They will hoard belongings and can often live in chaos.  Whereas a deficient metal type strives for perfection, simplicity and craves objects of beauty made to the highest standard.  They are concerned with quality over quantity and have a deep sense of duty.  In striving for perfection the metal type will live in a state of continual disappointment.  In balance, the metal type finds peace and tranquility in life and within themselves.   Connecting with others and the world around them, they bring a sense of serenity and spirituality. 

The fire type is unusual in that there are 4 different types, making the excess and deficiency not so clear to identify.  There are those fire types who would describe life when out of balance as living on a rollercoaster.  One minute everything is brilliant, love is all around and a glance or a passing comment, can bring them crashing down, causing misery and feelings of being unloved and worthless.  From another perspective a fire type may feel low and lonely, unable to respond to love and help that is offered because it’s value is questionable.  In excess the fire type may be brash, cocky, over confident and inappropriate.  In balance, a fire type is life and soul of the party.  Loving beyond measure and radiating positivity. 

What does all this mean for us?  An understanding of the 5 elements and how they sit within us can give us the ability to connect with people on a deeper level in not only our professional, but personal lives.  It brings an acceptance and tolerance to people’s behavior and temperaments, enabling us to embrace the difference and diversity in those around us and acknowledge when people are out of balance.  Moreover, as with nature, nothing stands still.  Season’s change and so do our energies.  There is no need for us to remain out of balance indefinitely.


This blog has been written by Katy Henry and Marisa Belli 

Tags: Acupuncture, Five Elements, Moxibustion

Treatments: Acupuncture

The views expressed in these blogs are those of the blog authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Bridge Centre for Natural Health.

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