In Feng Shui, we have many uses for the five elements. For example, we use the five elements to determine the best colors for the different rooms in the home.
Another use of the five elements is to figure out what makes a person tick. What motivates them.
It can be very valuable, as a mother, to understand your five elements personality type. If you understand yourself, you can avoid your pitfalls and learn how to motivate yourself to manage your home and family life in a way that creates happiness for all your family members.
In the Nine Steps to Feng Shui® System, home management pertains in Step 7 along with decluttering and simplifying.
Water Personality Moms
Water personality moms get motivated my money and financial success, but they also love to research. They often describe themselves as “investigators.” To them, flow is super important, so when any part of the home is messy, they feel like they are stuck. Feeling stuck can lead them to fall into their pitfalls – fear, guilt and recklessness.
If water moms are home makers, they would like to get a part time job or start a side gig, but how can they, when things at home are a mess? Sometimes they feel their kids’ bedrooms are out of their control and out of their reach. Because they value privacy, they feel it’s not their place to go into their kids rooms to clean up.
But their kids messes affect them deeply. When they get fed up with the disorder, they lash out against the kids or give them the cold shoulder. Their pitfall is to try to guilt the kids into cleaning up their rooms.
Wood Personality Moms
Wood personality moms are motivated by productivity. They want to get things done, especially things that are not part of routine housework. They love to work out. They see housework as something that gets in the way of their important projects.
When wood personality moms are dealing with messy homes and all their time is consumed with daily tasks – and they don’t advance on special projects – they feel defeated.
They especially love to be outside in nature and work on their garden. Sometimes you’ll find that they neglect the inside of the home in favor of the outside. These are the moms that will just shut the door to their kids bedrooms’ messes so they don’t have to think about them, until one day they explode in anger.
Fire Personality Moms
Fire personality moms get motivated by social life. You could say they’re “party animals,” or where, before they had kids. They would much rather do something fun than clean the house, but they clean the house because they want to have company.
Fire moms are always planning play dates and love to have people over. They can go overboard when planning children’s birthday parties.
Fire moms worry about how they are perceived by others. They like praise. When the homes of fire moms are messy they feel, not just embarrassment, but shame.
They try to turn clean ups into parties, fun times, but this mode of tidying up a house is not sustainable, so they get exhausted in the process. Over time, they may start avoiding being home.
Earth Personality Moms
Earth personality moms are motivated by relationships. They crave deep connections with the people around them.
They have a tendency to sacrifice for the people they love, which they sometimes can take to extremes.
When the homes of these “earth moms” get messy, they tend to give up everything they want and need to do for themselves in order to take on the responsibilities of others.
Earth moms have trouble understanding individuality and aren’t good at keeping good boundaries. If their kids’ rooms get messy, they clean them up. In the process of picking up and tidying up they rummage through their kids’ possessions, then interrogate them about what they found.
Then earth moms get depleted, frustrated, and resentful, when their help isn’t welcome.
When they can’t handle their kids messes, they nag constantly and obsessively. The kids try to avoid them or put headphones on so they don’t have to listen to their mom.
Metal Personality Moms
Metal personality moms’ motivation comes from knowing they’re doing what’s right. They tend to be very religious or spiritual, although they may no longer follow the beliefs they were brought up with.
Metal moms like rules and routines. They can’t understand why their family members just won’t cooperate, when it would be so easy to keep the home tidy if everyone just did their part. They’re big on developing good habits and they tend to be judgemental of others.
They are natural naggers, unfortunately, and often cite authority figures or sources to support their pleads.
They’ll say thing like “the Bible says…” “scientists have found out…” “psychologists say…” until their kids get fed up and roll their eyes at them and shut them out.
How About You?
Which of the above descriptions is the best match for your mom personality type?
Is it hard to get your kids to clean up their rooms?
What have you tried?
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The Method I Developed so Our Home Would Run on Autopilot
When my boys were little, I didn’t think it was important that they learn to tidy up their rooms on their own. As long as they helped a little, I was fine with that.
But that all changed when they were 8 and 5, and got big into Legos. Boy, did it hurt to step on those barefoot!
Now we weren’t dealing with hundreds, but thousands of small items on the floor. Before that the biggest challenges were the train tracks and the tiny car sets. Now it was multiple sets of Legos, each containing 500 to 1000 pieces. It would take me 20 minutes to pick up tiny objects (from just a few square feet of floor) and put them into one plastic bin, and 2 seconds for my five year old to knock it over and put everything back on the floor. It wasn’t working.
Our days were filled with the struggle between the embarrassment I felt at how messy the home looked, and me nagging them to pick up.
It was very important to me that the boys learn how to tidy up their rooms fast so we would have more time to enjoy as a family. Enjoyment was my motivation because I have a fire element type personality. I love social events and having dinner parties. Not being able to have people over was a big drain on me.
So I worked really hard to create a process to tidy up a room that would work for small boys. It had to be easy to do and easy to memorize after practicing it for a few times. I put it together and it worked! After that, tidying up their rooms and the whole house became a breeze. Even I started using it, because it was so much more efficient than whatever I was doing before (randomly running around the house picking up things, I guess).
For years I wondered if it would work with other kids and not just my own. This year I decided to find out. And guess what, it does work! It works really well. Go see some examples here.