How To Tell If You’re Yin Or Yang (+ 3 Ways To Restore Balance)
Once we understand the Yin and Yang elements and which one we predominately are, we can begin to restore balance.
Although seeing a practitioner is always the best way to maintain balance, there are some simle recommendations you can do on your own, once you understand this theory. So lets dive into this and make it more clear.
How To Know If You Are Yin Or Yang
Comparing list A and list B below, which list most sounds like you and your body?
- Water with ice
- Nighttime and relaxing
- Room temperature water and warm teas
- Daytime energy
This quiz is an extremely simplified way to understand your constitution, however one can understand the relationship of Yin to Yang through this.
If you resonate more with List A: You are more Yin.
If you resonate more with List B: You are more Yang.
That being said, some people can be in a mixture. If you are one of those people, it would be best to see a practitioner, so that they could assess you properly. We can look at the tongue color and check the pulse to get a bit more accurate in the diagnosis. If you are interested in learning more, I recommend trying a consultation! It can be very eye-opening.
As the symbol of Yin and Yang displays, the two form into one another.
The relationship between these two are important: Yin would not stay strong without Yang and vice verse. It is this beautiful relationship of give and take, always changing but always helping to stay in homeostasis.
In fact, we can change from Yin to Yang and back, many times in our lifetime. I myself know that I have been Yang for some years, and been Yin in other years of my life. I also know that I have been a very Yang energy within a Yin body. The combinations can be vast but there is usually one that rules ever so slightly.
How to balance Yin and Yang energies
In TCM, we believe that when the body is in balance, our health is in check. So attempting to reach a more neutral balance of the two would be optimal. To develop a plan that achieves that, we look into emotional patterns, diet, body aches and history, among others, to find a way to reach homeostasis.
However on a more basic level, you can begin to achieve balance through diet, emotions and body awareness.
Is your diet mainly smoothies, ice, raw vegetables and fish? Or do you opt for more bone broths, meat and cooked root vegetables? The way we eat can really effect the temperature in our body. This can most certainly help in balancing Yin and Yang.
- If you are a Yang person, with a red tongue and lots of energy, start relieving all that heat through your diet. Maybe red meats, spices and warm thermogenic foods aren’t best for you. We all have those friends who seriously start sweating at one bite of Cajun spice! Eating more of a neutral diet with things like mint, dill, fresh vegetables and fish might be better for this person.
- If you are a Yin person, with a pale tongue and fatigue, start nourishing your body with more warming foods like this Broccoli & Coconut Soup. A problem I often see is deficient people consuming a cleansing or detoxifying diet. That is a very cold diet! Unless in excess and heat, I would not recommend that. We need to shift this obsession with cleansing and learn to nurture our bodies without eating in excess. This is the most valuable point I had learned in all my study.
We can take mindful actions towards balancing out our yin and yang. I will admit that this can be a challenge. However, setting an intention to be more mindful and not reactive is where we start. This intention will eventually become a habit.
- If you are a Yin person, when stress occurs, do you feel sadness or fear? Do you find you often cry or internalise your emotions? This would be a more yin reaction.
- If you are a Yang person, are you a very angry person? Do you snap when often times other can let things go? When you are stressed, does it manifest in this anger or intensity? This would be a more yang reaction.
Emotionally, we want to try to be more flexible with our reactions. Did a plan not go as predicted? Take a breath, and find the solution. Reacting to a problem will only add more stress to the body. We don’t want to bottle up our emotions here, that will only cause an eruption later on. Instead, we want to calm ourselves down, and try to find the practical solutions. For emotions, whether you are more yang or more yin, we want to use the same practice to balance ourselves out: by being less reactive and more proactive.
Lastly we can look at our bodies and the behaviour and activities that can help bring us into balance. For example:
- If you are a Yin person, you may find balance through practicing more aggressively, such as a vinyasa flow class.
- If you are a Yang person, a more aggressive person by nature, then practicing yin yoga once a week would help settle the mind and take the body away from yang energies.
See also A Beginner’s Guide To Meditation
These are ways to keep our bodies neutral. This can be tough as we usually like what we are good at. However, practicing what we need rather than practicing what we are good at is far more beneficial to our body’s balance.
If you’re Yin, support your wellbeing through:
- Diet – Eat more warm root vegetables, meats, spices. Certain fruits such as cherries and mangoes have surprisingly warm properties.
- Emotions – Start being identifying any fears or triggers towards sadness. Identifying these triggers is the first step towards being more mindful and balanced. Work towards finding solutions over being reactive.
- Body – Practice a vinyasa flow yoga class to build more heat, confidence and power within the body.
If you’re Yang, support your wellbeing through:
- Diet – Eat more cooling foods like mint, cucumbers, fresh salads and fruits. Avoid red meats and spicy foods.
- Emotions – Identify what triggers your anger and stress. Just like with the opposite, creating awareness over these triggers is the first step to being balance.
- Body – Practice a Yin yoga sequence to calm the mind, cool the body and relax.
Our diet, emotion and body awareness are all therapeutic. When we start believing this truth, our Yin and Yang begins to achieve a state of balance, our health improves and our choices can become a lot more clear.
So tell me, are you Yin or Yang? Have you tried to restore balance on your own before? Please share your experiences with me, and ask me any questions you have, via the comment section below – I can’t wait to hear from you.
P.S. Who can you think of that might need to balance their Yin and Yang energies? Be a pal and share this with them now. They’ll thank you for it later.
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