Recently, I had a friend approach me in a panic. She said, “I feel like my strong personality conflicts with embracing my femininity! How do I balance my feminine energy with my personality traits?”
It’s easy to say that men are like this and women are like that. Although generalizations can be useful, they miss the nuance required for understanding the complexities of who we are as women. While many women realize the truth behind embracing their feminine traits, this doesn’t mean that every woman will fit neatly into the description of classic femininity.
I see the traditional feminine as an archetype. It’s an ideal form to strive toward. However, people are unique, and it doesn’t mean every woman will embody this form. Actually, none will align with it entirely, but many will find that it provides a solid framework for understanding who they are. The key here is accepting our feminine traits free from dogma while remaining confident in the ways our personalities make us unique.
Understanding Yourself and Those Around You
Personality adds another dimension to who we are. When it comes to learning about personality and human interaction, I always find myself returning to C.S. Joseph (Chase), a YouTuber who specializes in Jungian Analytical Psychology. Most of his videos concern what is more commonly known as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI). I like Chase because he understands personality with mindfulness for masculinity and femininity.
You can learn many things about your personality by figuring out your type. For example, you can learn your interaction style, your communication style, and even if your personality type is masculine or feminine. This knowledge can help you understand yourself and those around you.
For example, one of the interaction styles is the see-it-through type. These are the ISFJs, ISTPs, INTJs, and INFJs. These types have a need to finish everything they start. Due to the drive and determination these types possess, they’re sometimes perceived as more masculine, regardless of gender.
But does this mean that women who are “see-it-through types” should change this aspect of their personality to conform more to the feminine archetype? Absolutely not. This is just one aspect of their personality that is more masculine, while many other parts of their personality will be feminine. This doesn’t exclude them from womanhood.
We All Have Feminine and Masculine Traits
I’ve learned that my personality is one of the more feminine types. I am passive. Archetypically, the masculine is active and the feminine is passive. I have an easygoing personality, and I prefer to defer to others rather than make decisions myself. I am more responsive than initiating, which makes me naturally receptive.
Accept your feminine traits while remaining confident in the ways your personality makes you unique.
This goes hand-in-hand with my whimsical and daydreaming nature. I dedicate a significant portion of my day to thinking through metaphysical puzzles in my head. Although there are disadvantages to being as detached from the physical world as I am, I’ve learned to accept this as a naturally feminine quality of my personality.
I also have masculine aspects to my being. I tend to value logic and reason over emotion and have difficulty understanding and expressing my own emotions. This makes me independent, emotionally and otherwise. Although this is a masculine quality, I’ve learned to harvest it in a way that is helpful and nurturing to others. This doesn’t mean I’m not feminine because of one or two traits that make me different. I can accept that in some ways I am the exception, not the rule.
Feminine Ideals Are Still Useful
Does this mean that we should disregard feminine ideals? No. I still hold strong that feminine ideals are more in line with our female nature than feminist ideals. I know that I became more in tune and more accepting of who I was when I embraced femininity.
Although women who embrace the traditional feminine are criticized for confirming to a rigid ideology, I could argue that feminism offers an even more rigid identity requirement for women to adhere to. It’s up to women to ask themselves: Which one aligns more with who I truly am?
Back to My Friend
Returning to my friend’s dilemma. In my eyes, this friend is nothing short of feminine. She is nurturing, empathetic, thoughtful, humble, and a fantastic hostess to boot. (Seriously, she knows how to create a warm welcoming environment and an incredible charcuterie board). Just because one part of her personality doesn’t fit the ideal feminine archetype (who even knows what that is, really) doesn’t mean she isn’t feminine.
Sure, she’ll have her own list of masculine traits, such as being confrontational (or should I say “a lot,” as she likes to put it), but that’s okay. As long as these traits aren’t hurting her relationships, it isn’t an issue. She could even go the extra mile and learn how to hone in on these traits in a way that is nurturing to those around her.
For self-improvement-oriented people (if you’re a woman reading Evie, you probably are), it can be tempting to want to improve or even perfect every aspect of who we are. But sometimes, there’s nothing actually wrong with who we are. We’re different from others, and that’s okay.
All the information we need is at our fingertips. Learning about and finding the balance between feminine energy and your unique personality might just be the answer to accepting who you truly are.
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