This is something that has been on my mind of late. Working with a lot of women I see trends in the way many of my female patients go about their lives. Often there is a tendency to always be on the go. Always busy. More often than not, this isn’t by choice. I know men are subjected to the pressures of life also, and possibly some of what I’ve written may resonate with them also. But my personal experience of this is as a woman, and the bulk of the work I do in this area is with women. And so these words are written with women in mind.
Pressures of family life, being a mother (or striving to be a mother, or being in the process of becoming a mother), building a career and maintaining relationships are all time consuming and important aspects of many women’s lives.
We’ve been told, we can have it all.
We can work, play, build our career, be the best friend, mother, lover, daughter, sister ever. Maintain that healthy weight. Eat well. Exercise. Play. Dance. Laugh. Do more.
This push to be constantly doing is very Yang in nature. The Yang energy is about movement and action, it is striving and reaching and achieving. In terms of Chinese medicine it is masculine in nature. This is not to say striving and achieving is the domain of men. Or that Yin belongs solely to women. Within all of us there exists both feminine and masculine, both Yin and Yang.
This masculine energy of striving and achieving has become so all consuming in our lives it literally does consume all of our time. It can also consume all our energy. We can be left feeling exhausted and depleted.
The Yang, masculine energy does not exist on it’s own. It needs the counterbalance of the feminine Yin.
The feminine Yin, is still and quiet. It sits placidly, solid. It is substance. A calming, soothing influence. The nature of Yin is to be receptive, to receive. To surrender.
The word surrender causes the striving Yang tendencies within us to call out ‘But to surrender is to give in! To admit defeat! To admit I can’t do it all and have it all! And BE all, to everyone!’
Not so. The surrender is to willingly acknowledge our deep and mysterious Yin energy. The origin of our femininity.
There is a strength in surrender. Particularly when you have been hard-wired to focus on achievement. It takes courage and strength to give in to stillness. Like a slow exhale, giving in to Yin is like reclining and curling in upon the self. Looking inward at the dark, quiet interior. Taking that moment and pausing for a breath. Seeing and feeling that quiet moment, getting that sense of stretching out to the infinite darkness, knowing where we came from.
Stillness and solitude and quiet are not weak. These attributes, qualities, actions are not lesser than Yang in any way. Everything which defines Yang, means nothing, nothing at all without that sweet, soft counterbalance.
Do not deny that precious, feminine Yin.
To deny it is to deny our very selves, our true feminine strength.
Embrace your Yin. Surrender to rest and to stillness. Allow the Yang activity to slow and still. And rest. Settle back in to the dark interior, surrender to your softness, marvel at that gorgeous, sweet feminine energy.
And rest, woman. Rest in Yin.
Anna McMullen works with women to help them achieve balance in their lives. She does this by working with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, as well as by offering NLP and Heart Centred Coaching sessions, and Heart Centred Acupuncture. Contact Anna today on 0402945574 or send her a message here.