Femininity is heavy. Debated and studied, weighted by society and its expectations. But how do we, as individuals define it? Our voices and experiences matter, even if they don’t make it into scholarly papers or end up used in dictionary definitions. Sharing our experiences bring colors and depth to the human experience.
Helene Sandi brings her own insight through our series #FromWomenToWomen, defining what femininity means in her own existence.
“I define femininity as ultimate surrender to what is. It’s a fierce, dark, and transformative energy and at the same time soft, graceful, and flowing. Femininity is multi-faceted and cannot be put into one box.” She tells us.
Helene comes from a Middle Eastern background. “It’s a society where women are encouraged to get married and have children pretty early on. Even though I grew up in a more open minded and progressive household, these ancestral codes are still in my blood, and I had to do a lot of healing work around ancestral programming.”
Helene draws most from the Wild woman archetype of the feminine energy - the energy that has given her the most confidence in stepping forward to live a fearless life
Always a strong personality with her own defined wants and needs, Helene found strength and fierceness in her own femininity. “I left home at a pretty young age, and I ended up dropping out of college to go out into the world and gain the life experiences I wanted.” It wasn’t an easy feat for someone coming from such a traditional background, especially with no guarantee waiting for her on the other side.
A wellness coach who offers one-on-one private sessions to address health challenges and to bring balance to the mind, body, and spirit, Helene found radical change in her life through yoga which played a special part of Helene’s own exploration of her femininity. The start of her yoga journey, like many felt more of a calling than a deliberate discovery. “I was living in NYC, burnt out and amid a total breakdown; physically, mentally, and emotionally. Then one day, I noticed a yoga studio across the street from the apartment I had been living in for the last 3 years. I never noticed that yoga studio until that day - I knew I was being called.”
From there she continued on to Los Angeles to complete her first 200 hour YA certified training in the Vinyasa Flow Method. She confesses that she gets in tune with her intuition and instincts through her body. “By practicing yoga, meditation, breathwork, ritual and mantra, I am able to break through layers and get in direct contact with the Source wisdom that lives within - which is intuition.” For Helene, her Asana practice helped her to break down walls and barriers to reach her own truth.
Helene finds that the physical movement in yoga can also help her break her own barriers to find her own self. She wears Tangled Kiss Bodysuit in Indigo Sunrise from Isabelle Moon's collection of sustainable yoga clothes.
Much like Charlotte who shared with us the science behind making healthy choices, Helene’s favorite time of the day to practice yoga is in the early morning even though she’s not really a morning person “Yoga has completely shifted my relationship to the mornings! I love starting my day with yoga - it sets me up for a positive and successful day, where I know I will make more aware choices.” For Helene, yoga allows her to connect better with her own self through physical movement.
“We can train ourselves to hear our instincts, but first, we must be willing to become very quiet. Quieting external and internal noise. This takes practice, and like a muscle we must train ourselves to learn how to listen.” She says about her practice. Movement isn't always easy, and it's a topic we've explored before. From figuring how to stay motivated with moving, to how it can allow us to express ourselves freely.
“My first tip for anyone having trouble getting in touch with their instincts would be to get back into the body - through movement. Move the body freely, then sit quietly with the breath and notice what comes up. Listen. The more we do this, the more in tune we will become and will eventually be able to hear.” she explains. Like much of yoga, and indeed of life - it's all about practice.
And that's really the life lesson we keep hearing over and over again from our community - mental and physical exercises require hard work and practice.
What are you working on right now, Gentle Souls?
Defining femininity on our own terms,
If want to find out more about Helene, you can head to her Instagram page. Or you can head to the website to check out what classes and coaching session she has on offer on her website.
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