Which Element Nourishes You?

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Photo by Patrick Perkins on Unsplash

Photo by Patrick Perkins on Unsplash

Since a lot of us are spending more time at home right now, it’s a good time to consider whether your home environment feels supportive, and what you can do to shift that if it doesn’t. One simple way to do this is to make sure your home includes the elements that are most nourishing for you. The five element theory comes from Taoism, and is the foundation of a lot of modalities including Traditional Chinese Medicine and feng shui. 

There are a few different ways to figure out which of the elements (earth, water, fire, metal, or wood) nourish you the most. You can look up your numerology, or you can tap into your intuition and notice which element you’re naturally drawn to. I like this method because it encourages us to tap into our own innate wisdom, which we all have. Just like everyone can sense whether a home or a place feels good or not, we can sense which element feels the best to us. 

To help you figure out which element feels most supportive for you, spend a moment visualizing each of the following vacations and see which one sounds the most appealing. Go with your first instinct and try not to overthink it!

  1. Taking a cooking and wine tour in Tuscany

  2. Looking out the window of a modern penthouse in the middle of a bustling cosmopolitan city like New York City

  3. Swimming in a deep, dark, cool lake

  4. Hiking in a lush bamboo forest surrounded by tall trees all around you

  5. Sunbathing on a hot summer day at the beach

If a food and wine tour in Tuscany sounds appealing to you, you’re nourished by the earth element. If you’d rather be in a modern penthouse in a busy city, you’re drawn to the metal element. If swimming in a cool lake sounds like your ideal vacation, water is supportive for you. If hiking in a tall, lush forest sounds ideal, you’re nourished by the wood element. If you prefer to be on a hot, sunny beach, you are attracted to the fire element. 

It’s also totally normal to be nourished by more than one element, so don’t worry if you can’t decide between two of the above. This can also change over time based on what’s going on in your life. For example, I have friends who aren’t happy to be in New York right now when there isn’t a lot to do, but for me, being in my home in New York feels really nourishing and supportive.

Now that you know which element supports you, you can choose colors, shapes, and materials that make your home a more nourishing space for you. Stay tuned for future posts where we’ll go into each of the elements and how to incorporate each one into your home!

by Anjie Cho


If you’d like to learn more about feng shui check out the Mindful Design Feng Shui certification program. Laura Morris and I launched our program in September 2018. To get on the list about it, sign up at: www.mindfuldesignschool.com.

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