Of the five elements originating from Chinese philosophy, do you know which is your predominant element personality? (You can complete the Five Elements Personality Test here.

Typically, there are one or two elements that are predominant in a person. As each element is attributed to a certain personality archetype, knowing the primary or secondary element(s) that dominates our personalities can help increase our self-awareness, providing further insights into our lives and relationships with others.

By knowing your predominant element personality, you can then gain knowledge on how you relate to others in various aspects of life such as work, family and loved ones, and understand which kind of elements work best together and which do not. Thereafter, we can better manage our relationships with others and create more harmonious relationships in all areas of our lives.

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Before looking at how to manage relationships, we first need to understand how five elements interact with one another naturally first. There are 2 basic cycles of interaction surrounding the five elements, namely productive cycle and the controlling cycle.

In this article, we will focus on the productive cycle - the phase where the elements support and strengthen each other.

As a rule of thumb, Wood produces Fire; Fire produces Earth; Earth produces Metal; Metal produces Water, Water produces Wood.


A quick recap on the characteristics of the Five Elements Personality in work settings.

  • Wood: Resourceful and technical
  • Fire: Energetic, full of drive
  • Earth: Stable, demure, sympathic, empathic
  • Metal: Righteous and go by the book, straightforward
  • Water: Wise, ambiguous, fickle

Read on to find out which elements work best together to bring out the best between them in a work environment.


To work with Fire people (Wood grows Fire): Wood can guide Fire persons who are willing to do any tasks handed to them, but usually do not know how to go about doing it. Wood persons will be resourceful enough to deal with the technicalities of inventing and designing a platform for Fire persons to perform on.


To work with Earth people (Fire grows Earth): The more stable and demure Earth should allow Fire persons to render assistance to them, as Fire persons are driven with their fire energy and will ignite and propel Earth persons. For example, starting something new or when things have reached a point of stagnation.


To work with Metal people (Earth grows Metal): Metal should receive assistance from empathic Earth persons at work to tone down the attachment to the extreme principles of Metal's personality. This allows a return to being more humanistic in work management.


To work with Water people (Metal grows Water): Straightforward Metal will help Water persons to push forward in terms of execution of ideas and creativity. This allows things to materialize and roll out rather, than getting stuck at the brainstorming stage.


To work with Wood people (Water grows Wood): Smart and creative Water persons will support and supply new ideas for the technical development aspect of work by Wood persons.

friendships five elements personality

How about the characteristics of the Five Elements Personality in friendships and relationships with people?

Wood: Competitive, socializes easily
Fire: Genuine dedication, selfless, friends in and out of work
Earth: Kind, compassionate, seeing the best of people, supportive
Metal: Extremely loyal, soft hearted, grateful and appreciative
Water: Honest, welcoming, accepting, flexible


When with Fire people (Wood grows Fire): Wood persons are generally competitive in relations to other people. They socialize easily and when with Fire, this will spark the relationship to a whole new level alongside the enthusiasm and sincerity from Fire persons.


When with Earth people (Fire grows Earth): The sincerity and selflessness of Fire persons will be warmly received and complemented with Earth’s sympathy and empathy. When Fire and Earth persons come together, often a strong and stable relationship will be forged through real and kind hearts.


When with Metal people (Earth grows Metal): The support from Earth persons will be well received with much appreciation from Metal. From there, long lasting and committed relationships can be built between people of the two elemental personalities.


When with Water people (Metal grows Water): Righteous Metal persons will be drawn to the honesty of Water. Together, Metal and Water relationships are built on acceptance of each other; hence, there is always a tinge of appreciation and allowing in the interactions of the two elemental personalities.


When with Wood people (Water grows Wood): The accepting character of Water will soften yet encourage and nourish strong-headed Wood persons. This makes the relationship an ever growing and developing one. New fresh ideas and developments can flourish easily between the two elemental personalities.

Article contributed by Dr. Lim Xiang Jun. Dr. Lim is a Singaporean who holds a Doctorate Degree in Acupuncture and has been in this field of practice since 2005. Her spiritual inclinations has also led her to obtain certifications for alternative medicines such as Ayurveda, Yoga, Reiki and metaphysical studies such as Bazi (Four Pillars of Destiny), Feng Shui, Physiognomy, Tarot Divination, Crystal Healing, etc. She believes balancing the elements in the body and improving one’s health is the easiest step for anyone who wants to change their quality of life.

Interested to learn more about how your predominant five elements affect your romantic relationships? Drop us a note at: [email protected].