Can one change make a difference? Can one person make a difference? Our answer: definitely. Change, however, comes in many forms. German-born, Taiwanese actress Ning Chang has a multi-faceted approach. Successful acting career? Check. Law degree, plus a tireless dedication to social responsibility initiatives? She’s got that, too.
As if that weren’t enough, Ning recently decided to make the sacred trek up Mount Kailish in Tibet, China. To prepare for the 32 mile hike and an altitude of 18,000 feet, she not only conditioned her body, but also her mind through meditation. In doing so, Ning discovered a stronger, healthier lifestyle that has carried her far beyond her (successful!) climb.
She became determined to empower others to embrace healthy habits, going far beyond your basic charitable efforts. Ning traveled to Haiti to bring focus to the clean water epidemic. She’s helped care for children with congenital heart disease in Tibet. In Vietnam, she worked to bring awareness to their sanitation issues. Since 2005 she has participated in more than 35 initiatives around the world.
Ning's overall message is that self-improvement and positive change happen on an individual scale—no passport or planes required. She is a firm believer that making one small change in your daily routine can lead to an all around healthier and happier life. Which is why we are celebrating Ning, along with five other remarkable women, as a Difference Maker, and telling her empowering story to inspire women around the world to make a difference, too, whether it be big or small.
The Wink: What gives you the confidence to put yourself out there?
Ning Chang: Failure. I heard so many “no’s” before actually landing a role as an actress. I appreciate my failures because they teach me areas where I can improve.
TW: So, you have a law degree? What made you pursue that?
NC: Many people have asked me: "Do you feel that having a Juris Master degree is a waste of time now that you are an actress?” I have never regretted studying law. It taught me a more logical way of processing my thoughts and actions. Success in any area takes hard work. That, in itself, has shaped my approach to life, my work, and my values.
TW: If you weren’t an actress, what other career path would you have chosen?
NC: If I were not an actress, I would love to be a teacher.
TW: How important is makeup in your life?
NC: I wear makeup when attending events or filming. I usually ask the makeup artist to do a more natural look—I have healthy skin, and I want to show it off!
TW: What’s the one beauty product that instantly makes you feel confident?
NC: Lip balm. Even with no makeup, a moisturized face and lips with a hint of color can make you look fresh and healthy.
TW: If you could give women one piece of advice, what would it be?
NC: You can make a difference.
TW: What does it mean to be a Difference Maker?
NC: It means that you’re doing something good. It’s using your voice and being persistent towards the change you want to see in the world. Even a small gesture may have a large impact on someone else.
TW: Every person has a dream, what is yours?
NC: My dream is to build a public welfare foundation so that I can continue to support and bring awareness to the cause of public and personal health.
TW: What keeps you motivated?
NC: Knowing that I only get one life to live, and I need to make it the best. I try to seize every opportunity knowing that if I miss one, it doesn’t come back again.
Words: Alix Light Perez