I was facilitating a Personal Branding workshop for the Australian Institute of Company Directors, and I shared an ancient Chinese concept of opposites called Yin/Yang and it was received with such interest. 

If I was to say to you that we all exhibit elements of yin (feminine) /yang (masculin) in our physical characteristics, would that make sense to you?

When I’m working with corporate clients one of the first things I do  is assess where they sit on this yin / yang continuum. Some of us will exhibit more yin characteristics while others exhibit more yang characteristics. Once I know where they sit on this continuum I can start to make suggestions on their clothing that will be in harmony with their position and the industry in which they work. This can often help resolve difficulties or conflicts stimulated by dress.

So let’s look at how this concept is applied. Here’s a picture of Ms. Julia Gillard. 

You’ll notice the angles in her eye’s, nose, mouth, hair, dark glasses and jacket are more yang than yin.  This is good for her given her position. She needs the visual strength that communicates competence, credibility, and intelligence. Now let’s look at the below image of Ms. Julia Gillard. 

Does she look as “yang” compared to the above image? You’ll notice that the soft curves in her hair, the round curves of her pearls, the curve in her neckline all add to making her look softer – more “yin”. All these elements are used to soften her overall look. This would not work if she was addressing the Nation but it does work for a fun photo shoot.

Ultimately you can adjust where you sit on the yin/yang continuum by altering your clothing based on your audience and business objectives. Why not give it a go tomorrow morning when getting dressed for work. Good luck!

P.S If you’d like to learn more about your personal brand, colour and style, feel free to check out out, “The Art Of Self Packaging For Success (3 Hour recording of a live workshop)” or “The Rise Of The Empowered Women (7 step quest with video’s within a closed Facebook group).