Healthy Relationships


Healthy relationships are important ingredients of happiness and success in life.

Start healthy relationships by dealing with your emotions first, and applying them appropriately to any type of relationship in your life.

The Seven Emotions

Emotional wellness holds the key to any type of healthy relationships. According to Chinese medicine, there are seven emotions in Chinese health, and they need to be taken care of before health and healing can take place in the physical body.


Chinese health is all about balance of energy—the balance and harmony between the yin and the yang, which are complementary opposites. Anger is associated with your liver, which controls your blood, bile, and other body fluids. The dominant liver's yang energy weakens your liver's yin energy. As a result of the imbalance between the yin and the yang in your liver, this ascending liver's yang energy begins to affect your brain and heart, causing headaches, insomnia, and mental confusion.

Learn how to manage your anger, which is the most damaging emotion to your vital organs, in particular, your liver and your heart. Anger can damage your liver, which in turn causes more anger, and thus creating a vicious cycle of destructive emotional energy, which is often the root cause of mental depression.


Anxiety blocks the free flow of internal energy (known as qi in Chinese medicine), and injures your lungs. Shallow breathing and shortness of breath are some of the symptoms of anxiety.

In addition, anxiety affects your large intestine, causing constipation. Chronic anxiety may further damage the functions of your spleen, pancreas, and stomach. The resultant indigestion further lowers your body's immune response.


Over-concentration or compulsive thinking disrupts energy flow in your spleen, pancreas, and stomach. Mental fixation in the form of addictive or compulsive behaviors impairs your digestive system, leading to loss of appetite and poor nutrients, and other eating disorders. 


Fear damages your kidney energy, causing it to descend, and thus adversely affecting your bladder. Panic attacks and chronic fear can cause renal failure and permanent kidney damage.


Due to its sudden and shocking nature, fright scatters and dissipates energy from your heart. If fright persists, it becomes chronic fear, which may also damage your kidneys.


Extreme grief injures energy in both your heart and lungs, making you more susceptible to grief and pessimism, which in turn weakens your heart—a perpetuating psychophysiological cycle.


Too much joy, such as mania in bipolar depression, slows down your heart energy, damaging the heart as if loses its control over your body. Overjoy, ironically enough, can cause heart attacks.

Emotional disturbances, due to imbalance and lack of harmony in the yin and the yang are injurious and disruptive to your vital organs, especially the hear, which houses your spirit and consciousness.

Do not let your emotions control your thinking mind.

Healthy Family Relationships

Family is a series of personal relationships in your life. Basically, it is what you make of it, what you contribute to it, and how you adjust to it.
  • Healthy family relationships bring you happiness, which is the groundwork for health and success in life.
  • Healthy family relationships reward you with comfort and support in difficult times and trying circumstances in life.
  • Close family relationships encourage you to be open and honest in communication. Healthy family relationships give your clear focus and directions in life.
  • Successful parenthood makes your life more intense, and changes your view of yourself and your approach to work, because your children become a part of your identity. 
Balance family relationships with the following strategies:
  • Live your life with your beliefs, instead of just "talking the walk." In other words, be a good role model for your family.
  • Always listen to others without judgment. Be honest: express your disagreement, and agree to disagree. Remember, people simply have different perspectives—what they see and what they think differ not by choice, but automatically. Therefore, respond with respect, and not anger.
  • Let your goals live with you, instead of putting them on hold. Adapt your goals to reflect your changing life circumstances. Don't let your goals be affected or interfered with by your family planning or relationships.
Healthy Love Relationships

A healthy love relationship plays an important role in making you not only feel but also look younger and healthier for longer. A good love relationship makes you glow and radiate with happiness and youthfulness.

Define life purpose

Before you look for a partner, find your own purpose in life. Do not settle for anyone who pays attention to you. Strive to be a person of purpose and principle yourself, and then look for your partner of purpose. Do not look for someone, whose character, faith, and purpose define yours. Be your own self!

So identify your life purpose first, and you will identify the partner you are looking for.

No great expectations

A healthy love relationship should generate no great expectations. Greater expectations only lead to greater disappointments, and the ultimate failure in a love relationship.
  • Do not expect your partner to take care of you.
  • Do not confuse caring about you with taking care of you.
  • Do not expect your partner to fulfill your needs. Always be self-reliant. Looking to someone for fulfillment will never work in a long-term love relationship.
Self-esteem in a healthy love relationship

You are what you are, and you are good enough for anyone who appeals to you and who sees you as who you are with the innate qualities that are uniquely yours.

The following is a common scenario of how a love relationship may end unhappily:

You want love, but you may be afraid to receive it. This is often the irony in a love relationship.

According to Zen (an Eastern philosophy and way of life) wisdom, problems emerge when you are looking for a "perfect" love relationship, or the "right" person to make you "happy" about yourself.

In your subconscious mind, that "perfect" love relationship or the "right" person can make you "happy" because deep in your mind a "good" love relationship is supposed to make you "feel good" about yourself. In other words, you are using that "right" person to reinforce your self-image, thereby unwittingly creating the "fear" in your subconscious mind, because your "well-being" then becomes too dependent on that "right" person to continue to make you feel good about yourself.

When that "right" person does turn up in your life, you may feel yourself inadequate, undeserving, or simply incomplete. Subconsciously, you feel the relationship may not last, and you may consciously or subconsciously "anticipate" the inevitable rejection that you think will inevitably happen one day. Then you start picking fights and testing the other person constantly (e.g. in fits of anger and jealousy), even though deep down you may want that love relationship to last, instead of to fail. Ironically, it may become a self-fulfilling prophecy. This is how a love relationship may turn sour and end unhappily.

Strength in a love relationship

There are different ways to strengthen a love relationship.

Be appreciative

Appreciate your partner, instead of complaining and whining all the time. You need to see the bigger picture, both of the person and the relationship, not just the shortcomings and imperfections of that person.

Be open-minded

Be open to criticism, and more importantly, be willing to listen to your partner, who differs, without being too defensive.

Be self-restraining

Set boundaries for yourself and your partner. Watch your tongue and control your temper.

Be wholesome

Being wholesome means you know yourself, your own wants and needs, as well as your priorities in life.

Be thankful and humorous

Always find time to enjoy yourself. A sense of humor is always an asset in a love relationship.

Be knowledgeable

Be knowledgeable and keep improving yourself. Apply knowledge to your everyday life, such as good time management, respect for others, genuine concern for each other's welfare, fairness, and integrity. In other words, make yourself a better person through self-improvement.

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

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