5 Elements of Self-care

Self-care redefined

The 5 Elements of Chinese medicine express themselves in our body-mind-emotion-spirit.
Imbalances within ourselves are eased by taking a little time to care for ourselves. Using the wisdom of the 5 Elements, we have access to innovative possibilities for self-care. Below
 is a short list to get you started:

Earth -Nourishing, giving and receiving

Lie down on the floor or ground and get very comfortable. Feel the Earth supporting your entire body from head to toe. Let yourself receive the steady, ever-present support of the Earth. As you are filled, pass on some of what you receive to others.

Metal – Clarity, reflection, letting go

Clear an area in a room, or outside in Nature.  Sit comfortably and allow your attention to explore the spaces between objects rather than the objects themselves. As your breath settles, bring your attention to the spaces within your nose, sinuses, airway, and lungs.

Water – Incubation, yielding, stillness

Be very present while pouring yourself a glass of water. Let yourself wonder where this water came from, how it is changing shape as it fills the cup, how it changes shape as you drink. 

Wood – growing, expanding, reaching

Expand your physical body – reach your arms up and out, inhale deeply to expand your ribs, feel yourself taking up more space than usual.

Fire – Loving, celebrating, communicating

Bring your awareness to your heart. Remember a moment of feeling love. As you feel the sensation of love in your heart, allow it to radiate within your body. 

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Cindy Black

Cindy Black is the Founder of Big Tree School of Natural Healing and the author of Meridian Massage, Pathways to Vitality. She is appreciated for her ability to make the complex accessible, fun, and practical.


  1. Nancy Zi on February 4, 2018 at 11:52 am

    thanks Cindy, good stuff.

  2. Debbie Wollard on January 12, 2018 at 5:06 pm

    so simple and useful! I really appreciate your posts Cindy. Thank you.

    • Cindy Black on January 12, 2018 at 7:56 pm

      You are most welcome – thanks so much for writing 🙂

  3. rachelle neher on December 18, 2017 at 9:59 am

    hi Cindy, Thank you so much for this tidbit! Refreshers always help! If you’d like to read a great book and reinforce your teachings about the elements, you might check out Mastering 5-Elements by Jeff Primack qigong practitioner & Professor Tanya Storch. I highly recommend it. fun read! I see its on amazon,
    Have a very special Christmas and a super fun, thrilling, year of abundance, joy, laughter and peace within.

    • Cindy Black on December 21, 2017 at 10:24 am

      Hi Rachelle,
      Thanks for the book idea, it sounds great!
      Merry Christmas to you too, I’m glad we are connected.

  4. Riina Uska on December 17, 2017 at 10:41 pm

    Thank you Cindy! In everyday rush I sometimes forget it. Good remaining

    • Cindy Black on December 18, 2017 at 8:47 am

      You are welcome! Happy to hear from you Riina 🙂

  5. Rebecca on December 16, 2017 at 2:30 pm

    Thank you! I have always struggled understanding the elements. This brief message helped me the most. Cool!!

    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:47 pm

      Hi Rebecca,
      Yay! Glad it’s making sense

  6. Martha Clare Hablitzel Fueter on December 16, 2017 at 12:17 pm


  7. Annette on December 15, 2017 at 10:48 am

    Thank you for these simple doable awareness actions

    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:47 pm

      You are welcome! 🙂

  8. ana on December 15, 2017 at 1:01 am

    k interesante, gracias por compartir

  9. Coeisha on December 14, 2017 at 7:21 pm

    Thank you. Namaste __/l\__

    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      You are welcome 🙂

  10. Kris Prell on December 14, 2017 at 5:19 pm

    Thanks Cindy

    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      You are welcome Kris 🙂

  11. rose ong on December 14, 2017 at 4:52 pm

    thank you
    so awesome

    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm

      Happy to know that you like it!

  12. Susie Hulcher on December 14, 2017 at 2:00 pm


    • Cindy Black on December 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm


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