The Truth About Feng Shui Elements

One of the most important things to understand about feng shui is that for it to work correctly certain elements have to be in harmony. The five feng shui elements of water, wood, fire, metal, and earth all have their own energy which, when balanced with each other and their surroundings, can bring about great fortune in health, finances, and relationships.


Water features are very popular in feng shui design due to their relaxing properties. Flowing water represents good communication and networking opportunities, however this is not to be confused with running water which serves no purpose, for example in a leaky faucet. In this case the water will symbolize money flowing away. It is a similar situation with a garden water feature. When the water is allowed to become dirty and stagnant it will prevent the flow of good energy, whereas clean and clear water will attract life and therefore good energy. The water element can be represented by the colors blue and black.


People often place plants and bonsai trees in their offices and work spaces as the wood element is believed to inspire creativity and motivation. It does so because the wood element represents nature, and therefore the creation of new life. Plants also provide a relaxing focal point in a similar way to a water feature. Outside of the home in gardens the wood element is evident everywhere. Trees and bushes can be planted very specifically using feng shui to prevent negative energy from entering a house. It should be noted that wooden ornaments and furniture are not considered to provide the benefits people would imagine, as they are made from dead wood and do not therefore represent life as the wood element should. The wood element can be represented by the color green.


Fire is an extremely powerful element in feng shui, and it is important not to have too much of it in the home as it can be harmful rather than beneficial. By the same token, having too little can leave people feeling cold and lethargic. By subtly introducing it into spaces it can inspire passionate energy and vibrancy. It can be represented in stoves, and obviously fireplaces. For people who do not have a fireplace in their home they can introduce this element through the strategic placing of candles. The fire element can be represented by the color red.


Just as metal conducts electricity so too can metal objects conduct positive energy throughout the home. Metal objects are thought to offer protection for negative energy, and the element is also associated with wealth and prosperity. When introducing metal into a space care should be taken not to display any sharp corners, as this is looked upon very unfavorably in feng shui. One way to introduce the element which is very popular is to hang wind chimes outside a house. This not only helps to balance the energy flow, but also promotes relaxation through the soothing noises produced. The metal element can be represented by the colors white, gray, and gold.


The earth element promotes strength, reliability and stability within the home, and as such has an extremely calming influence. It is also thought to nourish strong relationships. The earth element can be represented by positioning pottery and ceramics throughout the home. Stones and boulders can be placed in outside areas and around entrances to help the flow of positive energy. Placing living plants in clay pots around a home or work space will be particularly beneficial. The earth element can be represented by the colors tan and yellow.

Balancing the five elements will take some work and knowledge of the principles of feng shui, however it is worth the effort. It will help to create a harmonious living or work space, and will bring about prosperity and positivity.

BIO: Feng Shui At Work was founded by Michael Schnippering in Dallas, Texas in 1999. We are committed to the true art and science of Feng Shui.  We offer our services in the United States, Germany, France, Spain, Colombia and Argentina.

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