The Four Golden Threads

thread flowers
This article is inspired by the collective wisdom of a year-long Meetup group Victoria Fann co-facilitated in 2012 called The Enigma of Love. Twice a month, 24 men and women came together to share their experiences and insights about love.

In order for an intimate relationship to be healthy and sustainable, “The Four Golden Threads” — Physical, Emotional, Intellectual and Spiritual — need to be active and connected between two people. When entering into an intimate relationship, many people don’t pause long enough to make sure that all of these threads are lit up and in alignment with their partner. This simple misstep can lead to short-term pain or long-term misery, especially when two mismatched partners get married and have children together. Ultimately, what’s missing in the beginning will be the thing that derails the relationship in the end.

Think about it. In the beginning of a relationship when everything is new and fresh, we often tell ourselves, “So what if everything’s not quite what we’re looking for?” However, over time, little bits of compromise creep in. We see what we want to see and ignore the rest. It’s usually months or years later, in retrospect that we see that the clues of what went wrong were always there; we just chose not to pay attention to them.

Let’s first examine each of “The Four Golden Threads” with special attention to the impact of their absence:

If we enter a relationship with a weak or absent physical connection, what might that look like?

-No chemistry
-No passion or excitement
-No playful flirting and fun
-No meaningful or close feelings of intimacy
-No deep levels of affection

If we enter a relationship with a weak or absent emotional connection, what might that look like?

-No shared vulnerability
-No healing of emotional wounds
-No understanding of your emotional states
-No compassion or empathy for your experience
-No real nurturing or heartfelt affection

If we enter a relationship with a weak or absent intellectual connection, what might that look like?

-No one to share your big picture interests
-No one to talk with for long hours into the night
-No one to share your favorite movies, music, theater, books, etc.
-No one to continually pique your interest and curiosity
-No one to learn new things from

If we enter a relationship with a weak or absent spiritual connection, what might that look like?

-No shared values or vision
-No one to witness your experiences
-No one to support you as you navigate the inner realms
-No one to see and recognize your Higher Self
-No spiritual companion

It’s much easier to see when spelled out this way. Once you recognize the warning signs, you might not want to get involved with someone you thought was a perfect partner after all. Far better to open your eyes, get some clarity before you make a long-term commitment and find yourself in the land of regret. In addition, when one of The Four Golden Threads is missing, you’ll always have that gnawing feeling in the core of your being telling you something’s wrong.

Examining “The Four Golden Threads” helps us to move this subject out of the closet, where it’s vague and hidden, into the light to be seen. Once illuminated, we can recognize our patterns of behavior.

Why then, are so many of us willing to compromise and leave one of these four threads out? More than likely it’s due to the following:

-Fear of being alone
-Wanting someone (anyone) to share life’s experiences with
-Not believing that someone with all four areas of compatibility is out there
-A lack of trust in life
-A desire to escape from one’s self
-Pressure from friends and family to be in a relationship
-A willingness to settle for less than you deserve

This list helps to clarify something that can be difficult to see and opens up the possibility of making different choices going forward.

Now that we’ve shed some light on what can happen when one of The Four Golden Threads is missing, let’s imagine what it would be like to partner with someone with whom all Four Golden Threads connect.

Your Partner…

… shares vulnerabilities with you
… is willing to help you heal your emotional wounds
… understands your emotional states
… is compassionate and has empathy for your experience
… shares your interests
… supports your creative expression
… enjoys talking with you for long hours into the night
… enjoys sharing your favorite movies, music, theater, books with you
… continually piques your interest and curiosity
… is attracted to you
… enjoys meaningful or close feelings of intimacy with you
… frequently expresses deep levels of affection with you
… has chemistry with you
… shares and supports your beliefs, values and life purpose
… wants to witness your experiences
… supports you as you navigate the inner realms
… loves you unconditionally, both your gifts and your wounds

This may sound idealistic and a bit too good to be true, however, when you look at the option of leaving one of those things out, it doesn’t seem even worth pursuing a relationship like that. Does this mean we need to seek the impossible in a partner? Do we need to look for the perfect match?

No, neither of those things.

It means we need to look for the perfect partner for us. We’re not looking for a pie-in-the-sky dream partner, we’re looking for someone whose gifts and wounds match well with our own. In other words, when you meet someone with whom all Four Golden Threads connect, you have the opportunity to get to know this person’s innate gifts and wounds, to love and accept the good with the bad and to work with all of it, because the blessings are so damn worth it.

The trick is to enter into the relationship fully cognizant of the fact that in order for a relationship to be healthy, fulfilling and sustainable for both parties, all four threads need attention and nurturing. Ignore one and the relationship will, without a doubt, fail or be severely handicapped.

As humans we need to connect with all four threads to feel whole and truly express who we are.

To take this to an even higher level, ideally we want to be partnering with someone who is aligned with our life purpose, supporting us to authentically express our gifts and deepest passions so that our lives are rich and meaningful. This way of living is energizing and fuels us. That way, the relationship is not a source of energy, but rather a place to share ourselves. It becomes a shared journey rather than a place to get all of our needs met. It’s also a place where we can share our deepest fears and pain so they can be witnessed and healed. A good relationship will allow for a high level of trust, so that vulnerability comes naturally, hastening the healing process.

How sad that we were not taught how to use our most intimate relationships as a context for deep inner work and healing! Alas, many come to this place late in life and pay lots of money to do workshops, seminars and retreats to sort out the inner mess, not suspecting that when they return from those experiences, they’ll have to reconcile these issues in their relationships. This is a missed opportunity because while weekend workshops are great, the wisdom and insights don’t usually stick, which is why it’s better to work through issues in the ongoing “workshop” of our relationships.

All relationships are sacred ~ love combined with respect. All life is asking of us is to treat others and ourselves with love and respect. With The Four Golden Threads as our guide, we can partner with another in a way that nurtures and inspires us, and supports us to live the life of our highest joy.



New Certificates!

The 1st course I did on Udemy is “Elevate Your Tennis Game: Learn from Champion Andre Agassi.”  I went through the course 2x in 2017 because I’m an Andre fan who loves playing tennis! His course had 62 lectures and an hour of amazing video instruction which I eagerly watched! What I enjoyed the most is the experiences he shared and the wisdom he imparted while teaching me very technical tennis techniques throughout the course. Although, the promo material and syllabus mentioned a certificate of completion would be available, alas, I’ve never received one! I’ve even reset my course progress this new year and re-did the course a 3rd time [because it’s really a fun course], and I still didn’t get a chance to get said certificate, LOL!

Last week, I did Sean Berg’s Udemy course “Intro to Graphic Design.” Since I’ve worked on many graphic design projects for personal and professional use, this was a nice refresher!

The weekend following that, I also did The Science of People‘s “7 Scientifically Proven Steps to Increase Your Influence” and “Digital Body Language.” Both were taught by Vanessa Van Edwards.

I’m pleased that all 3 courses offered me certificates which I have now downloaded for my records 🙂


Happy Birthday, Kate!

kate the great.jpg
My sister Kate 

Q: What do you give someone who has everything?

A: Serenade for Kate

Yes, Toronto abstract artist and super kawaii girl Life by Kate on Instagram is my real-life sister. Today is her birthday!

Click the play button on the “serenade” link above to hear me sing Utada Hikaru‘s “First Love” song in Japanese! I only recorded half because I hope she records the rest of song on karaoke and dedicates it to me for some future time 😀

Please note: I do not speak Japanese. I am, however, a dabbler in Sumi-e [inkwash painting] and a Shodo student [Japanese Calligraphy].

It takes a long time to become young.

Pablo Picasso

Making Meaningful Moments

How fun can it be?
How much fun can I have in the process?
How many fun-filled friends can I meet along the way? 
How much fun can we have while masterminding together?

I flow on this joyous river,
and I experience the exhilarating feeling
of motion toward my JOYOUS expansion.

~ Abraham-Hicks

children playing

Looking through my Facebook feed earlier, I found the quote above shared by one of my fave people there. Since it’s the new year, I feel there’s a palpable energy in the air. It could just be me being excited that spring is coming!

I love when the season turns and it gets brighter outside. I love warm weather! Whereas some people may experience SAD [seasonal affective disorder], I can empathize because I experience something akin to wanting to just stay-in a lot in the winter. Yes, I would go to gatherings and do social events but normally, they are gatherings inside places with central heating or inviting fireplaces! 🙂

On cold, winter nights, I find myself making good use of things like saunas, steamrooms, and heated indoor pools. As much as I love playing outdoor tennis, I limit myself to playing only when the ground is play-able. On days when it’s too slick or dangerous to play [like the courts having too many icy patches], I focus on weight training in the gym, alone. I find this wards off the seriousness I feel over the holidays.

Ultimately, that is what I enjoy — the camaraderie and the sharing of a meaningful moment with someone. That someone could be my partner, my students, the many random people I meet while playing outside, or the people I know from my tennis group that I see weekly during practices. That someone could also, and is often, myself! You see, I enjoy my own company that I enjoy being alone, public or otherwise.

I sincerely believe that life is about weaving together a series of meaningful moments. These moments can be silly, serious, fun, enlightening, playful. These moments can be found while you are alone, running at park, reading a book at a café, sharing a smile with an attractive stranger on the Skytrain, or sharing a joke with colleagues during your lunch break.

The point is, you make these moments, because you are a creator. Creative life force flows through you and people are magnetized to you by your energy. If, like me, you’re happy with what you’re getting, then please continue what you’re doing! But if you’re less than satisfied, figure out what makes you happy/happier, and then do that. The new year is the perfect time for starting new habits.

I hope that you find these meaningful moments. Make some great ones! 2018 is about making new memories, meeting new friends, and experiencing as much joy as you can. Thank you for letting me share my thoughts with you! Happy 2018!!!

My 3 Fave Instagrammers

For 2017, here are my 3 most favourite people on Instagram in alphabetical order. They are my friends so please show them some love if you’re on IG! Also, visit me at my channel @xinageco for pics of food, tennis, cats and awesome Vancouver sights.

THANK YOU and wishing you a Happy New Year’s Eve 🙂



Anna Tang is a 13-year old tennis player currently sponsored by Wilson Tennis. Here she is on Christmas day at the tennis courts! Love the Santa hat and her training ethic. She usually has giveaways on her channel so be sure to follow her if you’re a passionate tennis player like me. 



Maleah Quan is my permanent WCW [woman crush Wednesday], foodie friend, and the poster girl for Asian-American hotness! She’s smart, stylish, and strong. Check out her IG and see her daily positivity posts. 



Roman Ansari is a photojournalist I had the pleasure of meeting this summer when he was on a NatGeo assignment in Vancouver, BC [where I’m from]. He does all kinds of photography and I’m a really big fan of his nude series! Being a naturist, I’m fascinated by his ability to capture the female form in the most sensual manner possible! If there’s anyone I’d let me shoot nude, you bet it would be Roman!