In last week’s blog post, I introduced the concept of the Constitutional Factor (CF), and how it is expressed through the Five Elements. I talked about the characteristics and issues of the Fire and Wood elements; in this week’s blog, I will go into more detail of the CF for the elements Earth, Metal, and Water.
An Earth CF diagnosis is made by observing a yellow complexion, a singing voice, a fragrant odour, and an imbalance in the emotion of sympathy. The key emotions for the Earth CF are worry and sympathy. Worry can express itself as obsession, over-thinking, fixation, fretfulness, angst, over-concern, and insecurity. Sympathy can express itself as over-concern, being overly supportive, needy, over-condolence, and commiseration. However, it can also express itself as the lack of sympathy, and not caring.
The organs associated with an Earth CF are the spleen and stomach.
The healthy Earth element allows people to easily give and receive emotional support and nurturing.
The main issues for an Earth Constitutional Factor are feeling supported, getting nourishment, feeling centred and stable, having mental clarity, and feeling supported.
Typical behavioural patterns of an Earth CF are along a spectrum and can vary in extremes:
- smothering/mothering — not supporting
- feeling needy — repressing needs
- excessive dependency — over independence
- uncentered and dispersed — stuck and heavy
- over dependent on the security of the home — inability to put down roots
A Metal CF diagnosis is made by observing a white complexion, a weeping tone of voice, a rotten odour, and an imbalance in the emotion of grief. The key emotion for the Metal CF is grief. Grief can express itself as feelings of loss, emptiness, resignation, longing, regret, remorse, mourning, and feeling bereft.
The organs associated with a Metal CF are the lungs and large intestine.
The healthy Metal element allows people to feel loss and move on. They value life experiences and know when the time is right to let go.
The main issues for a Metal Constitutional Factor are feeling complete and adequate in the world, recognition, approval, and finding inspiration.
Typical behavioural patterns of a Metal CF are along a spectrum and can vary in extremes:
- fragile — unyielding
- cut off — seeking connection
- resigned or inert — over working
- craving quality and purity — feeling messy and polluted
- deeply moved — nonchalant
A Water CF diagnosis is made by observing a blue-black or light blue colour facial complexion, a groaning voice, a putrid odour, and an imbalance in the emotion of fear. The key emotion for the Water CF is fear. Fear can express itself as fright, terror, anxiety, dread, panic, trepidation, apprehension, horror, foreboding, cowardice, and wariness. It can also express itself as fearlessness, displayed as bravado, being unafraid, adventurous, courageous, daring, risk taking, and reckless.
The organs associated with a Water CF are the kidneys and bladder.
The healthy Water element allows people to assess risk and know the appropriate degree to which that threat presents.
The main issues for a Water Constitutional Factor are trust and the need to be safe, finding their drive, needing to be reassured, and being overly excited during danger.
Typical behavioural patterns of a Water CF are along a spectrum and can vary in extremes:
- risk taking — fearing the worst/ over cautious
- distrusting — trusting
- intimidating — reassuring
- driven — no drive
- agitation — paralysis
An out-of-balance Constitutional Factor will cause other elements/organs to go out of balance as well. Treating the root of a CF imbalance with acupuncture can restore balance!
If you have any questions about the Constitutional Factor, I’m happy to answer them! Connect with me via my Contact page, or join the conversation on Facebook.