Are You the Glue that Holds Life Together? You Might be an Earth Element

By Dr. Ashley Abbs /

Are You the Glue that Holds Life Together? You Might be an Earth Element

Did you take the world’s oldest personality quiz to determine which of the Five Elements in Chinese medicine you might be?  If you haven’t, I encourage you to head over to this interactive quiz to learn which of the elements you are and circle back for more on the Earth Type – the compassionate, giver, and glue that seemingly holds the world together.  

The Earth Element provides stability and support to the other Elements. In some Five Element representations, it 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 - a time when we can appreciate the abundance and bounty that has occurred as a result of the previous growing season.  The Fruit has ripened and the veggies abound and we are able to nourish ourselves with ease with a profound connection to earth and its supportive energy. 

Another Five Element chart places the Earth Element at “the center”, 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 creates the invitation to come home and get grounded and clear, so that you may fully trust your next steady step.  

Nurturer, Peacekeeper and Giver – The Quintessential Earth Type

The Earth Type is a natural nurturer and peacekeeper, embodying the Mother Archetype as they’re considered grounded, stable and an excellent confidant.  They are the shoulder that we all cry on when we’re looking for empathy and support. They are fiercely loyal and willing to bend over backwards to help those that they love.  They take pride in being dependable and they have a knack for anticipating the needs of others with ease.  They love to invite friends and family into their homes with the intention of creating joy and harmony.   

With a unique ability to bring people to the center, they are considered skilled mediators.  The peacemaker and the glue that holds a family, group of friends and even colleagues together.  They are able to hold space create harmony for others to show up as they are.  They don’t force their own agenda, instead they have the capacity to meet others where they are at, not where they would like them to be.  They are dependable and loyal, with the capacity to love others unconditionally as they require.   This capacity also allows them at times to be somewhat of a social chameleon, changing themselves and their behavior, depending on the social group in order to fit in and make others comfortable.  

Feng Shui, Details and Natural Hosts…

They have an affinity towards working with the earth, its food and activities that center on transforming a house into a home such as Feng Shui and interior design.  Their care and attention can be experienced in the details, ambiance, sound, smell, and comfort have all been curated to ensure that each guest is made to feel welcome. This generally makes them amazing hosts and cooks that love to invite others into their home to enjoy a meal, break bread and share stories.  The laughter and love that permeates a room among friends fills up an Earth Types heart.   

When Sluggishness and Imbalance Kicks In….

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.  

When the Earth Type is imbalanced, they can 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.  

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.  

Healing Practices for a Fire Type: “Just Say No”

Evoke your sacred “no”.  Use it as a sentence.  You don’t need to even provide an explanation.  Notice how hard it is for you to let the word hang out there.  I invite my patients to practice saying “5 no’s before every yes”.  It’s difficult at the beginning, as you might feel as though you’re missing out on a lot of cool opportunities but in time, the practice provides greater discernment over your time and priorities so that you are more selective in what you put your energy into you. The key for an Earth  Type: Only making room for requests and opportunities that you really want to be a part of.   

Finally, I invite Earth Types to practice this meditation: Standing on the earth with your bare feet apart, your legs slightly bent, you can allow the earth energies to enter your body through your feet.  The extra connection to the earth which you will gain from this simple stance can be very healing as it will enable you to experience yourself as more secure, balanced and centered inside.   

Dr. Ashley Abbs is a registered acupuncturist, writer, mentor, and the owner of TerraSana Health in Calgary AB, Canada. She assists her clients in both her practice and online with the wisdom of Chinese Medicine, using the lens of 5 Element Philosophy to discover "Why They Are The Way They Are," so that they may trust their own inner wisdom and awaken their innate healing capabilities. You can take her 5 Element Quiz and learn more about Ashley at www.ashleyabbs.com or follow her on Instagram @ashleyabbs.

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