What Drives You Crazy About Other People?
When I teach workshops about the Five Element personality types, people often ask me if I think their relationship with their current partner will work.
And I always reply that Chinese medicine teaches that any relationship can work, as long as it’s based on understanding and acceptance from each person.
But that’s the tricky part, of course!
Because we all unconsciously tend to believe everyone thinks and feels like we do. So it can be really hard to understand why our partner isn’t responding to us as we’d expect them to!
But in fact, you could give a group of people the exact same experience, and they’d all perceive it and react to it in entirely different ways.
This is where learning about the Five Element personality types of Chinese medicine is so incredibly valuable because it’s the path to understanding why another person behaves the way they do.
Once you realize the “why” of their behavior, you won’t take it so personally, and you’re finally able to accept and love them for who they are.
For instance, if you can understand why someone drives you crazy – or why you drive them crazy – it can prevent so many problems in your relationship!
Let’s look at some examples of what drives each of the five types crazy about other people:
Water Element Personality Type
What might drive Water Element personality types crazy about other people?
Well, one thing is when people expect them to talk and think at the same time!
Water people need silence to think things through. And these are deep thinkers, so they need time to let their thoughts trickle down through the depths.
When other people are yacking and yacking, for the Water person, it’s like they can’t hear themselves think.
Some other personality types just naturally tend to “think out loud” and to a Water type’s ears, it’s just an annoying blur of words interfering with their thought process.
I’ve had many Water people tell me, “My brain just freezes when the other person won’t shut up!”
If it’s ever bothered you when someone chatters away and won’t let you have a moment to think, you may have a lot of Water Element in your nature.
This can give you new insights about your needs in communication and lessen the chance you’ll blame the other person for the discomfort.
Of if you find that your partner just shuts down as you’re trying to talk to them, they may be a Water person.
And just knowing this can help you not take their reaction personally, and to find new ways to communicate that are comfortable for you both.
Wood Element Personality Type
One thing that drives Wood Element people crazy is in conversation, when the other person just doesn’t get to the point.
Wood people are naturally direct in their communications, because they tend to think and act in linear ways, and they don’t like to dilly dally.
So if the person they’re talking to is going on and on, telling the whole back story, like “I said blah blah and then she said blah blah blah but then I asked so-and-so and they thought we should do blah blah, so then we etc etc etc”
Wood people are very goal-oriented, and they even approach talking to someone with the attitude of “What’s the goal and how do we get there?”
So it’s incredibly frustrating for them to have to stand there and listen to the other person go on and on and on and never define the goal of the conversation!
If you often notice you’re tapping your foot waiting for the other person to get to the point, you may have a lot of Wood Element in your personality, and this insight can help lessen your frustration.
Or are you in relationship with someone who always says, “Get to the point!”? Now you can understand why, and this can make it less likely you’ll feel as hurt by their reaction.
Fire Element Personality Type
One thing that drives Fire people crazy is having to work with people who take things too seriously.
Fire types are naturally light-hearted and always aim to look on the bright side of any situation.
At work, they’ll tend to try to lighten the mood with a little joke or some comment to help lift everyone’s spirits.
But often other personality types don’t respond, or worse, misunderstand and believe the Fire person is behaving irresponsibly or even being flakey!
To the Fire person, why not make the work fun, for heaven’s sake!
It can be such a downer for them to have to work with people who have a serious attitude or don’t understand they’re just trying to lighten the mood in the room.
If you often find your spirit feels diminished when someone misjudges your attempts to make things fun, you may have a lot of Fire Element in your nature.
This insight can help prevent your feelings from getting hurt, and help keep your heart open to the other person.
Or if you’re in relationship with someone who seems to joke around too much, this can help you understand the motivation behind their behavior – They’re just trying to keep your spirits up, in a way that’s natural to them.
Earth Element Personality Type
What might drive an Earth type crazy about other people?
Well, Earth personalities are actually the least likely to be driven crazy by anyone because they’re such naturally patient people!
They’ll put up with a lot from others because they always give people the benefit of the doubt, and they want to make the relationship work.
But one thing that can upset them is when someone doesn’t listen to them or cuts them off as they’re talking.
Earth people are the “storytellers” – They need to explain the entire situation, not just one part of it.
And they care about everyone involved, so they feel the need to explain who said this and who said that, etc. etc.
If you’ve often had the experience of people not being willing to listen to you, or impatiently interrupting you, you may be an Earth personality type.
And with this new understanding, you may be able to feel less hurt when this happens, realizing they just naturally have a different approach in communicating.
Then you can find a way to create compromises so each of your needs are taken care of.
Or are you in relationship with a “storyteller?” Now, seeing the reason for their communication style, you can feel more patience, but also get ideas for a new strategy that will work for both of you.
Metal Element Personality Type
One thing that drives Metal types crazy about other people is at the grocery store!
It’s when someone stops their shopping cart in the middle of the aisle and just stands there, gazing at the shelves, or worse, talking on the phone!
That person doesn’t even think about the fact that they’re blocking the aisle and inconveniencing everyone around them.
Metal people are naturally highly aware of what’s going on around them; they’re constantly monitoring their environment.
And they also value good manners. So it can be a crazy-making experience to see someone demonstrating such a lack of awareness and such poor manners!
If you find yourself frequently sighing in exasperation when someone is so lost in their own world, unaware of how they’re affecting other people, you may have a lot of Metal Element in your nature.
It can be so helpful to know that the other person pays attention to the world around them in a very different way. This can lower your stress level in the situation.
Or if your partner seems to be bothered by little things that don’t matter to you, this can help you see that it’s their Metal nature. Knowing they experience their surroundings very differently than you do, you’ll be less confused by their behavior.
Understanding the Five Element personality types gives us a much more spacious and compassionate place to be with other people – and helps us love and accept ourselves too.
There is a reason for why you are the way you are.
And when you learn the “why,” you can embrace your true nature and become your most joyful and powerful self.
I’ve researched the spiritual side of Chinese medicine for over 30 years and through literally thousands of private consultations with people, and I’m dedicated to making it easy for everyone to use this ancient wisdom in our modern lives.
That’s what my new book is all about: The Five-Element Solution: Discover the Spiritual Side of Chinese Medicine to Release Stress, Clear Anxiety, and Reclaim Your Life.
And that’s also why I’ve created a free Facebook group, The Five Element Solution.
This is where I share stories about the Five Element personality types and answer your questions, so you can learn more about yourself and others in deep and comprehensive ways.
Even if you’ve not yet read my new book, you’ll still get lots of information and insights in this group that will make sense to you, so please consider this your personal invitation to join me there! Click here to request membership – It’s totally free.