Creating the ideal work-life balance with Yin & Yang
Are you experiencing an inability to relax and let go, anger and frustration that is quick to arise and find the need for constant stimulation and can’t sit still? Struggling with sleep or feel restless? This blog could answer why.
To live a harmonised life, we need a balance of yin and yang energy. But before you freak out thinking this is some WOO WOO blog, it is not. Yin and yang is simply an analogy to illustrate the extreme spectrum of elements in our life and how we constantly strive for a balance in between.
I will describe what yin and yang is shortly but first, if your job is very demanding, busy and full on, it may well be the cause of an overdrive of yang energy in your life and therefore throwing your life into imbalance and disharmony. To combat this, we need to nurture ourselves by bringing in more yin activities and way of life. If this is you, read on. There is help!
When we are balanced, we can get a heck lot done with calm and ease. The dream right?
We can choose to be active or passive whilst maintaining complete clarity, stillness and calm.
This blog looks at how you can still get all your stuff done in a productive way yet flow through it with ease and less stress. It looks at how we can achieve work-life balance and emotional wellbeing through the concept of the yin and yang analogy. Let’s first have a look at what yin and yang is.
What is Yin & Yang
When we balance our yin and yang, we live harmoniously without a constant fight against ourselves (our heart wants to do this but our mind wants to do that). We don’t deplete our energy reserves and we stay SANE – mentally, physically and emotionally. Despite your gender, it is important to maintain a healthy balance between both yin and yang. When we don’t carefully balance them, that is when we experience discomfort in our emotions and body. Read on to find out more.
You’ve probably seen the symbol once or twice before – the two curved teardrops, one white, one black, with an inner circle in each with the opposite colour – the infamous yin-yang symbol symbolising the ‘way of life’.
Think of yin and yang as two independent, yet complementary energies. In the symbol, yin (the black) contains a seed of yang (the white dot), and vice versa – demonstrating that there can’t be one without the other. Yin and yang can be applied to many of life’s dualities like our work and life balance, our femininity and masculinity and our constant need for action verse our need for down time.
The Yin way of living
When we live in our yin, we tap into our inner introvert, peacefulness and wisdom. We use our imagination and intuition. We become passive, process-oriented, collaborative and we focus on being as opposed to doing. We feel relaxed and we embrace our femininity.
When we live too much in our yin, we start to become sluggish, lazy, overly introverted and we overthink. We are crippled by inaction and lack the motivation to get things done!
When we live in the Yang
We are always in the doing. We are ambitious and courageous as we embrace our extroversion and get things done with excitement and logic! We are directive, goal-orientated and masculine.
When we are living in too much yang, we experience anger, frustration, the inability to relax and let go as we need constant stimulation and can’t sit still. We can’t sleep and feel restless.
Why is the balance of Yin & Yang so important?
Can you see why being imbalanced of yin and yang is a bad thing? A balance of yin and yang offers you plenty of benefits including reduced anxiety, a stronger sense of identity, elevated creativity, enhanced intuition, and a profound sense of fulfilment and peace in your life.
You carry your busy life BUT WITH ZEN.
The above is not gender specific. It is not that if you are a female then you should thrive in your yin and that we expect men to be all yang. That is not the case. Gender does not mean that we need more of either energies in our life, in fact men and women should strive to have a balance of both.
So what can we do to balance out the yin and the yang?
Take a minute to focus on the characteristics listed above, which energy do you think you spend the most time in?
While not all of you are going to be yang dominant, it’s quite common for working professional to feel depleted in yin energy. You’ll need to take the time and nurture yourself, invite more yin back into your life to find your way back to balance.
Here are some ways to achieve work-life balance:
1. Reflection and mind focusing techniques for stillness
A good way to ensure you’re living in your yin energy is to take up something relaxing, that doesn’t take up too much time. When we spend time sitting in stillness by ourselves, we can turn inward to reflect and focus our mind. This is a slow and methodical meditative experience that fosters a stronger mind and body connection. A very good way to nurture our yin.
Join a Mirosuna guided class to learn how you harness the power of this technique or if you want to do this at home but struggle to focus and still your mind, see how the Muse meditation device can help you meditate easier and in a more enjoyable way.
My favourite place to zen out is The Mingary in Melbourne CBD. It’s as a beautifully designed room in the city, for the public to walk in, to take a seat and find stillness.
2. Yin Yoga
Yin Yoga is a type of yoga that allows us time to sit, be still, and notice what our body and mind are telling you. It creates the perfect balance within your energy systems. If you want that extra special experience, look out for Mirosuna Yin & Sound sessions which combine yin yoga with singing bowls (played in a way to induce deep relaxation).
I find it nice to do a yin class after work as it gives your body a good stretch after being all knotted up from sitting in front of a desk all day and gives us a chance to turn inward. It is soothing and relaxing to help you wind down at the end of the day. I really like Kimmybfit and Little Mandarin’s style of Yin Yoga classes.
3. Get out in nature
Take a walk, breath and just allow yourself to be in the moment instead of checking your phone every 5 minutes. When you take a walk, you find yourself talking less and just more observant of what is happening around you – the sounds, animals, landscape.
Some of my favourite quiet places to take a zen out in Victoria are: Serendip Sanctuary in Lara and the Redwood Forest in Warburton.
4. Get to bed early
Allow your body to regenerate, regulate hormones and create a good balance between yin and yang. If you struggle to fall asleep, read Mirosuna’s blog on Ways to switch off and fall asleep.
You probably think about this as taking a stretch for a few minutes here and there but it’s really nice on the body to have an actual stretching practice just like how one would attend a gym or yoga class regularly.
6. Participate in slow activities
This could include things like getting a massage, facial, writing, reading, golf and slow crafts.
7. Avoid rushing
This will involve being more organised, leaving earlier to get places, having things planned the day before and being more realistic with how much you take on during your day so you are not rushing like a mad person between appointments.
8. Just BE
Instead of being highly strung and stressing over all the little things – everything that hasn’t been done in the house like the dishes, clothes or the mess hasn’t been cleaned…let it go for a moment and relax. You want to let go of that negative tension and return to these things with a fresh mind. By then, you might realise that it’s not as big of a deal as it originally was. This is about just being instead of always doing.
Can you challenge yourself to find even just 10 minutes to just sit or lay there and relax.
9. Music before bed
If you want to invite more yin on the spot. You can focus on your breath. Slow down and deepen your inhale and exhale, track where your oxygen flows. Breathing deep into your belly, you feel it rise, then your chest rises, breathe that bit extra into your head and casually release. Repeat.
When I find that I am about to get annoyed at someone or something, instead of reacting straight away, I now take a few deep breaths and stop listening to everything around me. I turn inward until I find my zen again, then I attack the problem (but this time, in a more productive way).
It takes a lot of time and dedication to create good habits and find that work-life balance. The end result is totally WORTH IT! You can change your life if you want to but nothing will ever get better if you don’t want to put in the mental effort to do so. I created Mirosuna to help you do this as easy as possible.
Creating space for change will allow you to decrease your anger, stress and tension. It will help you regain the ability to relax and let go, welcoming more calm and better sleep into your life.
I truly wish you all the best on your journey. Having personally gone through this, I know that this practice will change your life like it did to mine. You will know you are seeing results when people say to you “how do you do so much yet stay so positive?” or “how do you make it look so easy?”.
Enjoy the process of inviting more yin into your life!
Founder of Mirosuna