BAZI DAY MASTERS #10: FREEDOM LOVING GUI (癸) WATER

Elusive, impossible to pin down, infinitely changeable, the Gui Water Day Master can best be characterized as someone who is intellectually fluid. The Yin counterpart of Ren Water, this element is usually presented as the mists that shroud the mountains, the clouds that change their shape with every puff of wind, the sudden drizzles that creates rainbows.

Amorphous is probably the best word to describe the creative and ever-imaginative Gui Water individual. They are always intellectually inclined, their agile minds thinking of a million and one things all at the same time. The problem is, these thoughts are usually free-flowing. The Gui Water who learns to channel and focus those thoughts and ideas will be truly successful.

The Gui Water Day Masters are not without their weaknesses, though. Like the formless water they represent, Gui Water people are often extremely fickle and lack sustaining power when it comes to pushing a major project through. It is common to find Gui Water individuals going through several different careers in the span of their working years.

Gui Water individuals are all about freedom.

Unhappy is the Gui Water who is tied down to a strict schedule or routine work. In business or in their careers, Gui Water individuals must choose a field where they enjoy a lot of flexibility, preferably without the need to worry about the nitty-gritty.

Gui Water Day Masters will also enjoy roles where they can use their subtle influence to draw out the best in others. Imagine life-giving rain sprinkling down on the arid ground to create new plants. The Gui Water’s idealistic nature shines at its brightest when it can be used to cultivate others. In this, the Gui Water’s approach to business is always driven by passion. The moment a Gui Water person discovers that one passion that is aligned with his or her inner values, that is the moment when things start happening.

To have the best chance of success, the Gui Water urgently needs to create a strong support system where they can leverage on the strength of others. No doubt, the Gui Water individual can be extremely productive working on their own passion projects but they will always need a team behind them to cross the finish line. This way, the Gui Water can focus on what they do best, creating value out of their ideas.

The Gui Water is particularly susceptible to boredom, their lives can be littered with a string of unfinished projects abandoned after the heat of initial passion is over. To overcome this, it is best that the Gui Water breaks down their goals into as many mini projects as possible. This tactic may help overcome the Gui Water’s distaste for routine.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #9: A FORCE OF NATURE, REN (壬) WATER

Have you ever tried to stop the waves? Impossible, right? That’s exactly what the Ren Water is. Unstoppable, indomitable, intelligent and resourceful. In fact, they are so damned close to perfect that sometimes it is hard not to be envious of their many advantages.

In the study of Bazi, the Ren Water is perceived as the roaring waves of the sea, the deep waters of the oceans and the constant currents of the river. Water will always find a way around obstacles. Think of a river flowing effortlessly past rocks and boulders. Ren Water individuals handle hurdles the same way, always with tact and diplomacy. They find a way around the obstruction instead of smashing their way through.

Some Day Masters are good at big-picture thinking. Others are masters of the minutiae. The Ren Water, can do both at the same time! Like the resourceful ocean, Ren Water individuals are highly intelligent. They can work on small details while keeping a bigger picture in mind.

The Ren Water are born entrepreneurs.

In fact, I’m not sure why I’m writing this post. Perhaps just to keep the series intact (OCD, much?). The Ren Water individual probably already runs his or her own business born out of their unique vision.

Ren Water Day Masters will thrive where precise, organized and structured thinking is required. Perhaps that is why so many successful Ren Water individuals are to be found in the IT business. Their highly compartmentalized brain is a huge asset where they can call up the outstanding amounts of information they hold in their memory. 

Ren Water individuals are progressive thinkers and visionary business leaders who are able to think far ahead into the future. They are also the only Yang Day Masters with a natural ability to make good connections. Knowing the right people also forms a part of their resourcefulness.

The only thing that can stop a Ren Water is their own tendency to over-analyze. They can easily think themselves out of doing something. The Ren Water needs to be mindful of this and set their own cut-off point for when the thinking stops and the action starts.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #8: ALL THAT GLITTERS IS XIN (辛) METAL

The Xin Metal is the polar opposite of its Yang counterpart, the Geng. Where Geng is tough, Xin is delicate. Where Geng represents raw talent, Xin is beautifully crafted. That is why the Xin Metal is always likened to precious jewellery or antiques – valuable but fragile.

Xin Metal individuals are easily recognized. They are never scruffy, always well-dressed and well-presented. There is an innate elegance in them that loves the best that life has to offer.

Think of a gold ring adorned with a flawless diamond. Think about how your eyes are naturally captivated by its radiance and multi-faceted beauty. Similarly, Xin Metal individuals can command attention and adores being in the spotlight.

Xin Metal is all about leverage.

In the business of life, Xin Metal individuals are exceptionally creative and mentally agile. They are usually the ones with distinctive ideas and the confidence, skill, talent and wit to make the ideas sound convincing.

When it comes to their choice of career, the Xin Metal will always be driven to develop their own special skills. Ideally, the career should involve something precise, bespoke and of course, unique. Once developed, the Xin Metal will never keep their special skill hidden from the world.

A very common weakness for the Xin Metal is the inability to carry out the actions required to turn their outlandish ideas into reality. In other words, you can go to the Xin Metal when you need sharp ideas but they are not very reliable when it comes to getting the job done. Xin Metal individuals are more effective when they can leverage on the strengths of others. For this same reason, Xin Metals venturing into the business world for the first time will feel safer in partnerships.

The Xin Metal Day Master will be at his or her best in the business of selling ideas or influence as opposed to actual products or services. This way, they can bank on their individuality, unique vision and strategic networking abilities.

Therefore, the key to a Xin Metal individual’s success is his or her ability to build good relationships with as large a network as possible. The support and goodwill of others is the main leveraging factor for the Xin Metal.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #7: THE ORIGINAL NUTCRACKER, GENG (庚) METAL

Geng Metal is aggressive, extremely hard and tough. It is often compared to unforged iron ore, raw metal or more popularly, a sharp and powerful sword. For iron to be useful, it needs to be forged by fire. Similarly, Geng Metal individuals are tough souls who can endure any kind of hardship and will emerge the better for it.

Action-driven, solid and persevering, these people have the innate drive to triumph against all odds. Within them lives a do-or-die attitude that will never admit defeat. Even when others around them have thrown in the towel and gone home, you can expect the Geng Metal to keep soldiering on.

These individuals will frequently appear cool and aloof on the outside. When their emotional equilibrium is balanced, their thought process is systematic and methodical. But watch out when the Geng Metal gets all fired up! In fighting mode, rage takes control and they may find it hard to remain detached. This strong fighting spirit which is such a boon for the Geng Metal becomes a bane when emotions cloud rationality.

Geng Metal always wants to win.

They love a good challenge and always want to be the first across the finish line. This enduring nature becomes a strength in their careers when the Geng Metal chooses a hard nut to crack. Go for something challenging that not everyone can handle. Something that requires endurance and dogged determination, with room for autonomy and minimal office politics. If it’s one thing the Geng Metal will not tolerate, it’s power games within the office.

Being an independent business owner will also appeal to the Geng Metal. If a partnership or joint venture is necessary, the Geng Metal’s partners should ideally be silent partners or clear boundaries of responsibilities have been drawn right from the start. Geng Metal individuals will find it hard to relinquish control.

To operate at their best, it is always advisable for the Geng Metal to map out their battle plan before the fighting starts. Clarity is power for the Geng Metal. To be at their most effective, they must first figure out what their objectives are and how to get there. Without this battle plan, the Geng Metal can be like an aimless sword slicing at thin air.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #6: IN THE LIVE SCORE FOR RESOURCEFULNESS, JI (己) EARTH RANKS #1

Pliable and adjustable, the Ji Earth individual is the most tolerant and lenient of the 10 Day Masters. Highly adaptable, Ji Earth Day Masters have no problem coping with different situations and circumstances. This is the bunch that will instinctively make lemonade when life gives them lemons.

Ji Earth personalities are nurturing and accommodating by nature. In many organizations, they are often the one people run to for help when things start to go awry. As leaders, Ji Earth managers will tend to be very protective of their subordinates, always on the lookout for their well being and won’t be the type of leader who throws their team members under the proverbial bus. At the same time, Ji Earth managers require a large dose of autonomy before they can operate at their best.

The Ji Earth’s first instinct is to serve.

For a variety of reasons, the ideal outcome for the Ji Earth Day Master is to form their own business.  First, of course, it is easier to follow your own principles and beliefs when you are the boss. Doing things that run counter to their beliefs is an absolute no-no for the Ji Earth.

Secondly, the Ji Earth individual has the ability to automatically bring people who share their same beliefs and values into their circle of influence. These friends also become their customers. 

Finally, a business that serves a greater good and is aligned with your interests and passions, will be the ultimate motivator for the caring and nurturing Ji Earth.

Ji Earth individuals should also consider leveraging on their resourceful nature into a sound business plan. They always know where to get the right help, at the right price for the right people. The problem is, the Ji Earth does this so naturally that they take it for granted. It’s high time they recognize this resourcefulness as a part of their own self-worth and learn to bank on these resourceful traits to help them get ahead.

While the Wu Earth procrastinates, the Ji Earth’s number one problem is that they often need other people to work on them before they can produce anything. Therefore, Ji Earth Day Masters rarely become independent business owners. They prefer strength in numbers and tend to like partnership and joint ventures where they can feel more secure. If this is what it takes for you to get started, be sure to choose the right partners who will also pull their fair share of the weight.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #5: ROCK SOLID, WU (戊) EARTH

Think of a mountain and the characteristics associated with it. It is a towering presence, mysterious, solid and unmoving. Similarly, Wu Earth individuals will project the same sense of stability and safety.

They are rarely mercurial or unreliable. Wu Earth people don’t reveal their thoughts or feelings easily and can give off the vague feeling of being enigmatic and reserved. Most importantly, Wu Earth, like the mountain, is self-defining. They don’t care what other people think about them. What they perceive is the most important.

In this respect, Wu Earth does not separate reason from emotion when it comes to their thinking process. Every situation is weighed against how they feel or their own interpretation of moral principles. This is something that the Wu Earth must be mindful about.

Wu Earth is immovable.

The mountain doesn’t go to anyone. Instead, people flock to the mountain. In terms of career, Wu Earth must be able to turn this sense of safety into their primary asset. The key word is trust. As an employee, your employer must be able to trust that you can bring stability into an unstable situation. As a freelancer or in terms of your second career, your service or product must bring about a feeling of safety and security for your clients. Wood brings growth, Fire brings hope, you, Wu Earth, is all about stability.

Think of it this way, when someone falls into a river, they may try to cling to branches or vines, but those could break. The best thing to prevent from being swept away is to try to cling on to a boulder. That boulder, which the Wu Earth also represents, is the rock that people cling to in times of turmoil.

Wu Earth individuals are self-generating. Highly self-sufficient, they able to cultivate their own talent and achieve success on their own. However, Wu Earth will not enjoy ‘talky’ roles. Those are best left to the chattier day masters. In that respect, building up a reputation of being an expert in their field will be best for the Wu Earth. A position where people come to you for solutions instead of you going out to the market to try to hawk your services.

The Wu Earth’s biggest weakness is their ability to turn procrastination into an artform. Usually, this is done in the name of laying the groundwork. Wu Earth individuals will not be comfortable moving until their plans are perfected. While this is good, too much perfectionism in planning can lead to missed opportunities. But when the mountain decides to move… watch out world!

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #4: LET YOUR LIGHT SHINE THROUGH, DING (丁) FIRE

The Yin counterpart to the blazing bright Bing Fire, the Ding Fire is usually described as a gentle candle that lights up the night.

Gentle and refined, Ding Fire Day Masters are discreet and elegant souls, not given to loud personalities and rough characteristics. Sensitive and receptive, the Ding Fire enjoys absorbing new knowledge and is particularly keen on inspiring others.

A single candle may not present much of a threat, but when given the right tinder, that same candle is able to burn down a house. Similarly, the Ding Fire Day Master does not reveal his or her talents quickly. Always unassuming, understated and subtle, the Ding Fire transforms into a trailblazer once their passions are ignited.

Ding Fire is transformative by nature.

People-centred, one of the Ding Fire’s biggest skills is their ability to influence through logic and reasoning. This does not mean that the Ding Fire is cold and purely logical. On the contrary, the Ding Fire has the rare ability to bring warmth and empathy to hard, cold facts.

By that logic, anything that helps people become a better version of themselves, both physically, mentally or spiritually, would be an ideal career or side business for the Ding Fire. The spectrum is extremely broad, but just for the sake of throwing in some examples, think along the lines of personal fitness trainer, self-development gurus, trainers or teachers, are just a sliver of the myriad options available to the Ding Fire.

A sales-driven career will also capitalize on the Ding Fire’s immense persuasive powers. This is especially true when the products or services are intended to aid the customers’ self-development process.

But things are never always that serious in the Ding Fire’s world. Your super power is your ability to inject fun into your projects. ‘Fun’ is a very persuasive selling point and one in which you hold the advantage. So let the sparkling side of your personality shine through!

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #3: TIME TO RISE AND SHINE, BING (丙) FIRE

In the study of Bazi, the Bing Fire is visualized as the sun: selfless, illuminating, dependable, and optimistic.

Bing Fire individuals exudes confidence even as you give off the impression of being relaxed and laid-back, carefree and jovial. This can only be pulled off by someone with an intrinsic belief in themselves and their abilities.

Nothing keeps a good Bing Fire down. Just as the sun unfailingly rises in the East every day, the Bing Fire individual is dependable and perseverant. Unfortunately, this also means that Bing Fires have a tendency to become very habitual and routine-driven. 

The glass is always half full for the Bing Fire person. An eternal optimist, you can find the silver lining in even the darkest clouds and the pot of gold beyond every rainbow. This positivity is a double-edged sword for the Bing Fire. On the one hand, there are very little regrets in a Bing Fire’s world. You rarely wallow in self-pity because you are constantly looking forward. But this same positivity makes the Bing Fire view the world through rose-tinted lenses. This belief in the good of every one and everything, means that the Bing Fire lack the ability to probe beyond the surface of any issues.

It is a rare Bing Fire individual who will be able to completely step out of your comfort zone to go beyond the tried-and-tested formula. Risk-averse and conservative by nature, a free-wheeling, loose and easy style of business will tend to be uncomfortable for the Bing Fire. While risk-management can be learned with one mindful step after another, in the creation of a second career, it would be easier for the Bing Fire to stick to his or her basic nature.

And the nature of the sun is to give.

Social entrepreneurism where your success contributes to the betterment of society would be a good fit for the Bing Fire’s magnanimous and generous nature. There is, however, a need to build some internal barriers against those who would take advantage of the Bing Fire’s generosity. Most Bing Fire individuals radiate an almost child-like naivety, unable to realize the darkness in people. Mindfulness of this inherent trait would go a long way towards preventing the Bing Fire from being taken for a ride.

The eternal optimist who shines bright no matter what will also make a good motivator. With the Covid-19 pandemic and the various unrests taking place around the globe, what the world really needs now is a ray of sunshine to light the way. Think about what you have to offer, focus on adding value, how your product or service can bring joy or hope to your customers. Be the Bing Fire that carries a message of hope.

Bing Fire individuals are also well-respected as mentors. While others may resent the success of people around them, the Bing Fire, like the sun, rises above all that pettiness. In fact, you will go all out to unearth the true talents and capabilities of others. Therefore, a second career as a professional mentor may be right up your alley.

If there is one caution to be laid upon the Bing Fire individual, it is to constantly evaluate your plans and objectives to avoid falling into a routine.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #2: BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED WITH THE YI (乙) WOOD

In our last article, we spent some time with the straightforward gentleman, the Jia Wood. Now it’s time to meet his sister, the flexible and adaptable Yi (乙).

While the Jia stands firm against the winds of life, the charming Yi Wood knows how to sway with the breeze.

The Yi Wood is visualized as a flowering plant in your garden. It may look delicate, but its roots are widespread. Pluck a flower and another grows in its stead the next day. Though not as deeply rooted as the Jia Wood trees, the Yi Wood’s roots are literally a tangle of networks just beneath the surface.

Similarly, the Yi Wood Day Master is charming and adaptive, the ultimate networker. They can get along with almost anyone. It is a rare (read: nasty) individual who finds himself unfriended by a Yi Wood!

Yi Wood Day Masters exude an elegant and sophisticated air, and are often pleasing to the eye. Usually well-mannered, Yi Wood people are also quick-witted, charming and smooth conversationalists. It’s so easy to succumb to the magnetism and allure of their silver tongue.

Like the soft growing plants that can bloom where they are planted, Yi Wood individuals are less resistant to change. You possess strong survival instincts and possess a ‘never-say-die’ attitude. It’s hard to keep a good Yi Wood down.

People are your wealth. Anything that requires networking would make an ideal second career for the Yi Wood individual or anyone who has Yi Wood in their Month pillar. You will enjoy and succeed in situations that require you to go out and make more friends, wheeling and dealing, connecting diverse groups of people to each other.

In particular, look out for opportunities to create a business that combines your personal passion with something that you have a lot of knowledge about. This gives you room for creative improvisation that will enhance the value of your services to your customers.

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BAZI DAY MASTERS #1: SLOW AND STEADY WINS THE JIA (甲) RACE

In my previous series, I focused on helping you stay relevant in your organization by using your manager or supervisor’s Bazi profile. Now that you are on your way to having your job secured (of course, barring any external situations outside of your control), let’s start thinking about creating a second career.

To continue on our journey, let’s spend some time understanding the core characteristics of the 10 Stems. In doing so, we will understand the core of our personalities and start building a career that is attuned to our basic nature as opposed to bending ourselves out of shape.

So let’s start with el numero uno, the Yang Wood, Jia (甲).

The Jia Wood calls to mind a tall and sturdy tree. It is competitive (which tree stands tallest?), it is deeply rooted, it is upright and straight. It is also the most protective of the 10 Stems. Think of a tree spreading its branches to provide shade for those who choose to shelter under it.

Like the majestic trees he or she represents, the Jia Wood individual is steady and reliable. Just as a tree stands straight and tall, Jia Wood individuals can be stern and forthright. Deeply rooted, Jia Wood individuals can be rigid and resistant to change. They prefer environments where they can feel anchored.

They grow, but their growth can be almost imperceptible. Have you ever seen a tree grow without the help of timelapse camera? If you said yes, please drop me a note. I’d really like to meet the most patient person in the world!

But back to the magic of the Jia Wood individual. Trees can turn a single drop of water into branches and leaves and flowers. Similarly, a Jia Wood Day Master will also possess the ability to take a single idea and adapt it into multiple products.

Building on that, the key here is to create a single product or service that can be endlessly adapted to suit different environments or requirements. For example, a simplified accounting system that can be easily used by all small businesses regardless of their industries.

Jia Wood makes for great teachers and even better critics. As a trainer, the Jia Wood individual thrives at presenting their thoughts to people and showing others the right way (even though they can barely figure out their own mistakes). Jia Wood needs to be aware of the tendency to be subjective thinkers and learn the difference between genuine guidance from nit-picking.

Even if you are not a Jia Wood Day Master, this principle can also be applied if the Jia stem is present in your Month Pillar.

I’m sure you can tell by now that with the Jia modus operandi, the outcome may require some time before it comes into fruition. So start now!

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