February 28, 2019 What Are Your Strengths (and Your Weaknesses)?
Dear Readers: Today we offer another opportunity for you to get to know yourself better, or at least get to know your elemental personality better. As I mentioned last month, we each have all of the Five Elements in our personality make-up, but there is one of them for which we have a special affinity. I suggested that this elemental affinity can be likened to a primary lens through which we view the world. There are five different options for this lens – one for each of the five elements – and our primary lens affects how we interpret and respond to everything that happens in our environment. What we love, who we love, what we hate, what is easy, what is hard, you name it. The reality is that our primary elemental personality determines more than we realize regarding how we live our life.
Last month I suggested that our primary elemental personality creates predictable priorities and tendencies in our life that can be compared to joining a secret club at birth. For example, all members of the Wood club will have similar tendencies, as will all members of the Metal, Water, Earth or Fire clubs. How members of these different clubs get along in relationships has been the primary focus of this blog for years, but it’s just as important, if not more so, to know yourself and what matters to you. When you do, you not only begin to understand much of what you have done in the past, you will also be able to predict your priorities and tendencies in the future. And as we have said here many times, your relationships will start to make sense, too.
So, without further ado, here’s another up-close comparison across the five primary elemental personalities. This time we’re looking at personality-based strengths and weaknesses.
Water Personality Strengths: Water people have a keen awareness of their inner resources and trust that they can handle whatever life brings. Exceedingly patient, Water personalities know that as long as they stay connected to their deep sense of self, they can ultimately triumph over any difficulty. This makes them optimistic, hopeful people.
Water Personality Weaknesses: If knowing their own abilities is the greatest strength of Water people, their weaknesses are fear and lack of trust. When Waters are disconnected from the inner forces that support them, they feel vulnerable and begin doubting themselves. Fear creeps in. They usually respond to this by becoming whiny, negative, suspicious, or eventually paranoid people.
Wood Personality Strengths: Wood people can envision their goals and firmly believe that if they try hard enough, they can manifest almost anything. Powerful and decisive, Woods count on their ability to get things done in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. They can use their abundant energy to remove obstacles that block the way. It is the nature of their personality to be strong, direct and assertive, hopefully in a kind way.
Wood Personality Weaknesses: If action and accomplishment are the greatest strengths of Wood people, their greatest weakness is an explosive response to lack of movement. When things aren’t happening fast enough, or at all, Wood personalities have nowhere to focus their formidable energy. They’ll push and exhaust themselves in the name of the goal, and ultimately lose their ability to be flexible and adaptable. In the process they can become impatient, angry, and often quite mean.
Fire Personality Strengths: Fire people reach for connection and usually open paths of trust with others to accomplish this. Firm believers in the abundance and good of all creation, including people, Fire personalities are upbeat and optimistic. Wherever they are, they can transform the mundane into the exceptional. They attract people, inoculate them with joy, and leave them laughing.
Fire Personality Weaknesses: If connection and joy are the greatest strengths of Fire people, their greatest weakness is not managing their energy. They thrive on drama and excitement but can take things too far and burn out themselves and anyone else around. Fire personalities live for connection but can entangle themselves with others and not know clearly where they stop and someone else starts. When this happens, they can become anxious, irrational, and moody.
Earth Personality Strengths: Earth people see the good in all beings and happily embrace them where they are. Loving and compassionate, Earth personalities naturally step forward to help, giving a piece of themselves (and anything else available) in the process. They use their steadying energy to stabilize people during the upheavals of transitions, allowing balance to be maintained. Earth personalities love and honor all relationships.
Earth Personality Weaknesses: If helping and supporting are the greatest strengths of Earth people, helping and supporting too much are their greatest weaknesses. Being needed gives purpose to their lives, but they can take things too far. When this happens, Earth personalities insert themselves in matters that aren’t their business and smother the people they are trying to help (or alienate them completely). Either way, they can worry themselves sick over the people they love.
Metal Personality Strengths: Metal people are kind and have the courage of their convictions. In a sense, sitting at the end of the cycle as they do, they truly have seen it all. Their keen ability to synthesize the learning, distill it into a treasure to be kept, then let go of what doesn’t serve, makes them the masters of wisdom. From this knowing they derive their incredible inner strength and will power. But the beauty of a Metal personality is that if you can offer them a rational reason to change, they usually do. Precision is also one of their strengths, as is the ability to compartmentalize their life and world.
Metal Personality Weaknesses: If incredible inner strength and will power are Metal peoples greatest strengths, the misuse of these abilities is their greatest weakness. These valuable traits taken too far can cause them to become inflexible and dogmatic. In their all-important honoring of truth, Metal personalities can also impose their own sense of order and discipline on others in an effort to maintain a sense of control. The end result is that people reject them, which initially might not matter to the Metal person, but if it happens too frequently, it will begin to erode their self-confidence.
Did you recognize yourself? I hope so! The goal is for these comparisons to provide clarity regarding your primary elemental personality and also the elemental personalities of the people in your life. And remember, we have all five elements in our personalities, so even if you can’t see the good in all beings all of the time like a balanced Earth personality can, there absolutely will be times you visit that Earth clubhouse to help stabilize someone you love during an upheaval or transition.
The bottom line is that we can all build up these strengths when we need them. Blessings to you!