The ancient Chinese philosophy of yin and yang holds that yin energy is feminine in nature (characterized by coldness, passivity, and nurturing) and yang is masculine (characterized by activity, strength, and power). The balance of the yin and yang energy in each person connects to their qi, or life force, which is the foundation of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). That means each person—no matter how they identify or their gender presentation—benefits from tapping into their feminine yin energy to create balance in their lives.
In the most recent episode of The Well+Good Podcast, which continues a series of discussions in honor of Women's History Month this March, Danielle Chang, co-founder of modern Chinese remedies brand The Hao Life, discussed how she taps into her feminine energy for optimal well-being—and why doing so is crucial.
Listen to the full episode here.
To reiterate, TCM holds that all humans have masculine and feminine energy. Balancing and knowing when to tap into each energy is key for living a well life because doing so can help you soften (or harden) your approach appropriately. And, to be sure, this philosophy applies to much more than communication in relationships.
“I think being feminine has gotten a bad rap,” says Chang. “As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that tapping into our feminine energy—[whether that’s] nurturing, compassionate, or tender—is a real strength…If we are able to lean into both our [feminine] and our masculine energies at the same time, then we can really keep our health in balance.” And, going back to the concept of yin and yang, ensuring you do lean into feminine energy at some times is crucial for any balanced wellness routine.
"If we are able to lean into both our [feminine] and our masculine energies at the same time, then we can really keep our health in balance.” —Danielle Chang, co-founder of the Hao Life
For example, when Chang practices meditation, yoga, or tai chi, and she’s doing a position that requires a lot of strength (associated with masculine energy), she first has to “soften into it,” which she says calls upon her feminine energy. It’s “sort of having to let go in order to reach this feeling of tranquility or harmony,” she says.
As crucial as Chang says femininity is to a balanced wellness routine, she reminds that it's not the only part of the equation. “We all have feminine and masculine traits," she says. "That is really the foundation of Chinese medicine—and learning how to tap into those energies.” And in order to actually do so, Chang adds, the energy of femininity must not be stigmatized as being undesirable.
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