Smoke Signals with Fire and Wood

Dear Vicki: My friend Sami was a wild woman; definitely a Fire. She loved going out, was the life of the party wherever she went, and never wanted to be tied down. But that all changed last year when Sami met Hans, an outgoing, but serious banker guy. Maybe a Wood? Sami really fell for him, and he seemed to feel the same. But after about six months of what looked to me like crazy, happy, almost all the time togetherness, Hans dumped Sami last week for a meditation instructor. Sami’s totally depressed and not herself. What can I do to help her get Hans back? Signed, Sorry for Sami

Dear Sorry: The dance between Fire and Wood is an interesting one. It’s a Nurturing Cycle relationship (if you are unclear what this means, check out “The Five Elements” tab on this blog), but is slightly different from the way other elements on the Nurturing Cycle relate. Earth feeds Metal by birthing it. Metal feeds Water by enriching it. Water feeds Wood by giving moisture. Fire feeds Earth by creating ash. And that ash comes from Wood: Wood feeds Fire by offering itself to be transformed.

At first, Hans’ time with Sami was probably exciting and transcendent for him. That’s something Fires bring to Wood/Fire relationships: exceptional experiences Woods can rarely create for themselves. I’m sure their initial time together was a complete high for both. Woods feed Fires with attention and support, which makes Fires happy and actually allows them to burn even brighter. But Fire burning unchecked can deplete, even destroy, Wood. It’s likely that when the newness wore off, Hans found time with Sami exhausting. He would have needed nurturing himself, and it’s Water that feeds Wood. For Hans, the calm, detached temperament of a meditation instructor would be a ready antidote for too much Fire. But it didn’t have to turn out this way.

Whether Sami ends up back with Hans or finds herself in a different Wood/Fire relationship in the future, there are two points to share with her about Wood/Fire connections that will help. First, Woods need to feel important and successful. With his new girlfriend, Hans will feel important because of the nurturing energy that flows from her Water to his Wood. She feeds him. Sami probably made Hans feel important because she, the life of the party, wanted to be with him. But the ongoing activity and drama that can accompany life with a Fire would eventually deplete him because it’s his Wood that’s fueling her Fire. Hans probably arrived at a point where he just couldn’t do it anymore.

Second, Woods need personal accomplishment, and this means they need time to work toward success. Some Woods can do business at parties and social events, and this is where their lives overlap perfectly with a Fire partner. But it sounds like Hans wasn’t one of those Woods. So not only was too much Fire energy depleting him, his need for time to create personal accomplishment wasn’t being met.

The good news for your friend Sami is that Fires can bounce back quickly. You want to help her build up her Fire, so encourage her to wear red (the color that increases Fire). She can also use rosemary or lavender essential oils (they balance Fire) by rubbing a few drops on her skin so that the scent is noticeable, or placing a few drops of the oil on a tissue and inhaling. Finally, Sami can place the palm of one hand across the back of her head directly behind her eyes and the other palm across her forehead and hold gently for 2 to 5 minutes. This specifically balances the emotions of Fire.

Going forward, remind Sami that Wood/Fire relationships usually do best if their connection includes time to work and recharge (for the Wood) and time to be active in ways that don’t involve the Wood (for the Fire). If they know and understand this, people in a Wood/Fire relationship can get along perfectly. And there’s no way to know whether, as he burned out, Hans sent a smoke signal to Sami hinting that he needed a break. Hopefully, if she’s in another relationship with a Wood, she’ll remember to watch for one. I wish her all the best.

fire wood smoke

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