The Earth Element

Earth Element:  Stable, Steady and always ready to offer you some tea.

Welcome to my blog, come on in, help yourself to some tea or grab something from the kitchen if you’re hungry. Can I show you this great book that I just read?   And no, we don’t need to go anywhere, let’s just stay home.

Earth loves thinking, nourishing, helping and serving.  It craves sweet flavors, likes rest, and tends to enjoy stillness. 

If you find yourself in the health profession, or serving profession, or are drawn towards thinking and helping others, there is a good chance you have a little bit of the Earth element in your constitution.

How to know if your constitution trends toward being more Earth:
  • Are you always ready to help others, sometimes putting your own needs last?
  • Do you like to intellectualize; read books, think about idea, strive to understand things in your mind?
  • Have you ever experienced, what we like to call, overthinking? Can’t stop a thought – say perhaps during the middle of the night when you should be sleeping?
  • Are you comfortable staying still, tend to want to sit on the couch, read a book, and relax?
  • Can you easily become sluggish? Have difficulty getting yourself going?  Make yourself exercise because your read and understand that is good for you?
  • Do you feel energized by people who are creative, by art, or new ideas?
  • Can you feel drained when given too many rules and instructions?


So far, we have talked about how to determine your constitution in the framework of the 5 Element theory of Chinese medicine.  If you are reading this for the first time, check out our introductory blog Here.   Last month we intrtoduced the Fire Element. Now let’s move onto the element next in the generation cycle, Earth.

Most of us tend to be one or two elements, but all of us will have a bit of every element in ourselves. By understanding and easily identifying the characteristics in yourself and others – you can learn how to keep healthy energy, stay nourished and not become too sluggish.

What nourishes the Earth, what drains the Earth, and what can you do to keep yourself balanced?

4 Tips for the sluggish, overthinking, worrying Earth (earth energy is low, taxed and sluggish)
  • Do something creative, go to an art show, a play, or create something on your own.
  • Create some structure: go to bed at the same time, wake up at the same time, and set some rules, or find someone in your life who does this easily and ask them to help you out!
  • Soup for you! Earth types can benefit from a strong digestion, broth based soups with lots of veggies can clear up sluggishness and increase digestive energy.  And since Earth is associated with the digestion, what you eat is how you feel.
  • On that note…watch the sweets. While the sweet flavor nourishes the Earth, too much will cause stagnation.  Sweet potatoes and carrots are great, refined sugar may be a bit too much for us to handle.

Generating/Draining and Controlling Cycles
   Sweetly referred to as the parent – child relationship (Generating / Draining cycle), or the grandparent-grandchild relationship (Controlling cycle).   If you are feeling drained and run down you can either ask your parents for support, or take a break from nourishing your own child.  And if you are out of control, ask the grandparents to bring things back into order.

In the case of Earth, Fire is the parent and Metal is the child.  Burn the wood with Fire, create ash, and voila, you have Earth.  Dig into the Earth, and you can pull out some Metal.  Makes sense, yes?  And, how do you control Earth?  Looking back two elements, to the grandparent, we see Wood.  Meaning, grow some trees in the land, and it stabilizes.

Fire loves energy, activity, ideas and creativity.  It is impulsive and moves quickly.

Metal refines things, creates order, rules and structure.  It is thoughtful, and process oriented, and wants to do things correctly.

Wood loves growth, goals, being in nature, and achieving. 

By engaging in activities or behaviors we associate with Fire the Earth types can be nourished.  If Earth is too stuck, then engaging in activities we associate with Metal will help move the stagnation, but too much can leave an Earth person feeling drained.   When Earth becomes too stagnant – think of swampy messy I never want to move again in my life just let me sit here and overthink everything – then you may need to invoke a bit of the Wood energy to bring it under control. 


If you are interested in learning more about the Earth element, or the 5 Elements in general reach out let us know.  We may be offering a class where we can dive deeper in the near future (trying to find out…do you want to know more???).

And, as always, if you want more support we are here to help (we are pretty much Earth types over here after all).

Enjoy your late summer before we head into fall, see you next month!