In Classical Chinese Medicine, your personality can be linked or classified according to the five-element theory. This includes all aspects of your physical structure, emotional tendencies, behaviors and propensity to certain illnesses. Since we are all part of nature and cycle through the seasons, we are a manifestation of all of the elements but we have a more dominant element in relation to the others. Each element can manifest in both positive and negative tendencies, depending upon the state of health and balance in the person at the time.
SO YOU'RE AN EARTH ELEMENT 土
If you've taken the quiz and you've been classified as a dominant Earth Element, according to Classical Chinese Medicine, you possess the following personality traits, constitution and facial structure:
—sophisticated, idealized, detail oriented, disciplined, organized, and discerning with an ability to make anything happen no matter what the obstacle
YOUR INTENTION: HARMONY
You're a humanitarian and you place great importance on living authentically and doing meaningful work in your life.
YOUR SEASON: LATE SUMMER
In some Five Element representations, the Earth Element is placed in succession between Fire and Metal, connecting to the seasonal transition from Summer to Autumn with that sweet spot where the mornings are cold and the days are still warm, often referred to as the Harvest Season. They sky is crystal blue, the sun is warm and the air has a slight chill to it. It is a time to give thanks for the abundant growing season yet it is a time to till and re-nourish the soil and to nourish ourselves with our connection to the earth and all of its energy and bounty.
The Earth Element can also be placed in the center of all the other elements where it holds the balance of the other four elements by supporting them in the transition from one season into the next. The Earth Element represents our connection to the earth and all of it inhabitants so that we can remain grounded in humanity and certain of the steps we must take in our lives.
YOUR PERSONALITY: THE PEACEMAKER, NURTURER, AND GIVER
The Earth Type is a natural nurturer and peacekeeper because they are grounded, stable and loyal. For those who they love, they are willing to do anything and innately understand other's needs. Their home is their safe haven and they love to invite friends and family to spend time creating fond memories of joy and harmony.
They are considered skilled mediators with an ability to see all sides in a confrontation and can help to bring opposing sides to the center. Usually considered the 'glue' that holds a family, group of friends and even colleagues together, they can always create a space for others to show up as they are meeting them where they are and without any expectations. They are dependable and loyal and have the capacity to love others unconditionally. Whatever the environment, they can adjust to fit it and help others to feel comfortable as well.
When out of balance, the Earth Element Types have a tendency to become overly sluggish and stubborn at times. They might resist change or being taken out of their comfort zone, and would rather stay in modes of routine even if they are not entirely working for them. This in part is because they don’t want to rock the boat, or inconvenience others who might be affected by their want for change.
They can also be incredibly worrisome, obsessively over-thinking and analyzing a situation to its worst case scenario. They can also find themselves succumbing to people pleasing, spreading themselves too thin and neglecting their own needs in order to take care of others. They can also be guilty of over nourishing and smothering those that they love even when they don’t need to be cared for. Earth types struggle with saying no, which can leave them overburdened with more work and responsibility than what one person can handle, creating further neglect of their needs and becoming resentful to future requests of support.
APPEARANCE: ROUND FACE, FLESHY FEATURES, LONG TORSO
Earth type people have a yellowish complexion, round faces and big heads, big abdomens, small hands and feet and plenty of muscles. They have a sing-song voice. They are calm in temperament, fond of helping people and like to be involved and needed.
MENTAL HEALTH CHALLENGES: WORRY, RUMINATING, CODEPENDENCY
The emotion associated with the Earth element is rumination. When a person is overly pensive and contemplative, he/she can easily become fixated on worrisome thoughts and ideas. Earth type people can therefore be tormented by their over-concern for details and can become caught up in circular thinking from which there is no escape.
But without the demands of work or responsibility to others, they can become inert and fall victim to the ruminating mind. In this state, their energy becomes stagnant and leads to poor digestion, heaviness and loss of stamina. In an unbalanced state, they can also have a tendency for excess eating leading to obesity, stomach ulcers and diabetes. They may suffer from disorders of the joints, particularly arthritis, and especially involving the wrists and ankles. Woman often have irregular menstruation with weight gain from cycle to cycle and men are prone to early prostatitis.
DIET & EXERCISE PREFERENCES: SWEET
Earth is related to sweetness such as naturally sweet food (sweet potato, yam, dates, dried fruits). The Earth element is associated with Spleen and its partner organ, Stomach which are in charge of digestion. Earth is also responsible for Dampness. This is a concept in CCM where the spleen is incapable of transporting and transforming body fluids, leading to an accumulation of excess moisture within the body. Water retention, hard to lose weight due to water, sluggishness, brain fog is all due to damp.
Digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, diarrhea, IBS is all related to the Earth element. It's preferable to avoid cold and raw food which will put out the digestive fire and make digestion sluggish. Also avoid greasy food, high fat, very starchy food as these are hard to digest and may add to dampness. Add in some warm and drying herbs like ginger, pepper, cinnamon, and other spices to eliminate gas and excess moisture. To improve fluid circulation, do some lightweight exercises but don't over-perform.
HEALING PRACTICES: SET BOUNDARIES
As an Earth element, you may over-give, let people take advantage of you, or disregard your own self-care. To develop healthier boundaries, learn to say “no,” and to be as kind to yourself as you are to others, doing things you enjoy without feeling guilty.
Self-care practices can go a long way for an Earth Type in their ability to nourish and support themselves so that they may continue to be the steadfast and trustworthy person that they pride themselves in being.
In relationships, you need lifelong bonds with people who feel like family to you. Because you are genuinely caring and responsible, you find great fulfillment in helping people and being of service. As such, you need a person who does the same. And you’ll thrive when you find someone who wants to support you as much as you do them!
But remember to evoke your sacred “no” without explanation and only make room for things that you really want to be a part of. Most of all, remember to connect with the physical earth around you because it is extra healing for you bringing a sense of security, balance and centeredness.
Always be true to your nature.