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The Five Elements of Relationships

Updated: Apr 1


Everything and everyone is a part of a whole. It’s demonstrated by the Taoist Yin and Yang symbol that shows both polarities and how they fit into a circle as one. As such, the lens of how we see ourselves and others around us is a mix of polarities, such as right or wrong, good or bad, weird or normal, etc. When we get stuck in our polarities, we resort to judgment, and we tend to focus on differences in personality and preferences as a “bad” thing. It keeps us from connection and healing, which is what most of us desire deeply in our hearts, whether we are conscious of it or not.

We tend to be most reactive towards the people that we are around the most - our kids, parents, partners, friends, or coworkers. You may not understand how and why someone close to you is wired the way they are, and you may judge it. How can your child be so different from you? How can your sibling or spouse respond in a way you would never respond? You may absorb and be overwhelmed by others.

These relationships around us are here to teach us something about ourselves and bring us into greater self-awareness and growth. It’s also an opportunity to calibrate into greater compassion for yourself and others. If you are not growing as a result of your relationships around you, it’s easy to cycle around in suffering, reactivity, judgment, guilt, resentment and overwhelm.

How do we balance the polarities and heal? With the chaos of the collective world out there deeply divided by polarity, how can we create more harmony within our own circles of relations and make a difference where we can?

The first step is to realize that these differences don’t need to polarize us in our own relationships. Diversity allows for differences of people, opinions, ways of thinking, beliefs, ways of being to exist in this world. These differences make up this diversity, and this diversity of people and elements makes up a unified whole. We are not meant to be the same, nor are we meant to be robots. And we don’t have to personalize these differences in personalities and reactions, if it’s because of our kids or family members.

Next step would be to adopt the lens of balance and neutrality and intend for more love and connection. There are so many ways we keep ourselves from connection by polarizing. That would require the practice of moving into greater awareness of your mind and heart, and knowing which is which.

Why is it important more than ever now to create your own peace and harmony in your own life and relationships? Because we have to vibe in our own personal lives what we want to see in the world. That’s powerful stuff. The more of us that wake up and practice the lens of balance and love in our relationships, the more we can see it in the world. What we do for ourselves, we do for our kids, our community, and the world. This is the unified whole. This process starts with us.

Which Chinese elemental personality are you? Discover the Chinese Five Elements to learn more about yourself and how you relate to others:
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