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Are you in your element?

‘Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better’, said Albert Einstein. So, this seems a good place to start when looking for ways to apprciate ourselves and others better.

When back in 2006, I was trying to find a tool that would allow me to appreciate my strengths and work on my challenges in a simple way and then be able to use it in the work I do, I struggled. I’m a visual learner and it seemed that all the personality profiles I looked at were quite difficult for me to ‘get’ easily because they were too cerebral.

Then I came across the Path Elements Profile. I was blown away by its accuracy and within 10 days I was in LA with a friend not only training in this method but visiting some great places – Venice Beach, Hollywood, Santa Monica – and trying to navigate the 14 lane freeways on what was to me, the opposite side of the road. We had a ball!

Twelve years on, and many hundreds of profiles later, using the elements in their natural form to describe our different personalities still makes perfect sense. Each of us is made up of the water of cells, the earth of calcium, the fire of synapses and the breath of life.

This comparison with the elements is a fun and inspiring way to help us appreciate our own communication style, strengths and personality and the ‘teams’ we live and work in. It can help transform relationships at home, work, school and in social settings.

So, are you a fiery trailblazer or a down to earth perfectionist? Do still waters run deep or are you, like the wind rushing here there and everywhere.

In brief: 

Fire personality types thrive on challenge and choice. They are decisive and assertive and bring light into situations. They radiate passion for their goals and have a ‘can do’ attitude


Wind personality types thrive on change and variety. They have lots of creative ideas and bring energy and excitement wherever they are. They are uplifting and positive and can see the big picture and all the possibilities


Earth personality types thrive on order and structure. They are grounded and solid and understand the gravity of each situation. They support and grow the ideas of others



Water personality types thrive on harmony and stability. They can help dilute conflict and cleanse difficult situations, understanding the importance of being flexible


So, whether it’s communication, emotional needs, anger styles or team work, the four elements give a simple, easy to understand language that everyone ‘gets’. You’ll find it referred to often in these One:Retreat blogs.

If you want more details, email us and we’ll happily give you more information or, better still, book on one of our retreats where you’ll have the opportunity to really look at this in relaxed and fun way.

Ruth Adams

Ruth has worked as a trainer and a communications coach for 20 years and loves to inspire people – from a boardroom to a classroom – to find freedom and ‘unlock possibilities’.
She is an associate of Family Futures, an area coordinator for Adoption UK and a director of Achkiy, a charity working with women in the shantytowns in Peru.
Ruth is married to Alan, has 3 birth children in NY, Berlin and Barcelona, 2 forever daughters and 6 grandchildren.

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