Your period: an inevitable and peculiar phenomenon experienced by women since the beginning of mankind (also a big contributor to how mankind continues to exist). We understand the biological purpose of having a menstruation cycle. But did you know that we can utilize the different stages of our cycle to further amplify our already existing capabilities with the goal of enhancing our productivity in both our work and personal lives? (Read that again!)
Our menstruation cycle is a commonly avoided topic of discussion that we tend to shy away from or if we do discuss it, we tend to focus on the negative side of having a period: the cramps, the cravings, and the dreaded mood swings. Our periods can be much more than a physiological cycle we endure each month for solely reproductive purposes. It can be a tool, nay, a feminine asset that we harness in our careers and our interpersonal relationships. If we pay close enough attention to the different facets of each phase experienced in our cycle, we can dominate challenges, goals, and conquests, of all types.
Just as we have seasonal changes on our planet each year, we have a naturally occurring biorhythm that takes place within our own bodies each month (more or less). The longer we disregard this natural system the higher our chances of experiencing burnout, fatigue, while also increasing our levels of stress or dissatisfaction (Tasooji, 2022). The more we choose to go against paying attention to our natural cycles the more often we tend to override the messages our bodies are giving us. Instead, it is important to embrace our cycle and understand how to work with the different phases of our natural system.
But in order to do that we would first need to understand each phase and when it takes place. We must break down the menstruation cycle into its 4 distinct phases as they are experienced.
The Follicular Phase:
The 1st phase of our cycle also known as the Follicular phase is the first 7 to 13 days after the last day of our previous menstruation cycle (before ovulation takes place). During this phase we experience a rise in estrogen levels which contributes to the aligning of our thoughts and actions. This is the time for a fresh start to tackling new challenges that may be presented both in our personal lives and in our careers. There is an increase in mental focus, learning absorption, structural thinking, and physical stamina. The Follicular phase is the time to strategize and plan for the month. Embrace your creativity and create action plans for goals that you have set out. Engage in exercise, focus on your own needs, and make efforts to breaking bad habits you wish to discontinue. Less sleep is needed at this point however, this is not the time to offer emotional support to others or to put the needs of others above your own. It can be understood that during the Follicular phase you are at your most masculine and should focus on starting new projects while tapping into this enthusiastic renewed energy (Tasooji, 2022).
The Ovulation Phase:
The 2nd phase or the Ovulation phase, follows the first phase between days 14 and 20. This time period is where both estrogen and testosterone levels rise in the body. As estrogen and testosterone levels increase in our bodies the regions in our brain responsible for verbal and social communication also increase resulting in an improved ability to read body language, facial expressions, and make communicating easier (Tasooji, 2022). This is also a phase of nurturing where our empathic abilities flourish, our expression of gratitude soars, and a time for collaboration is set. Our ability to repair or improve relationships is abundant during this phase allowing for us to support others, be more sociable, and make time for fun. This is the time for networking, advocating for yourself, and using communication to gain support by connecting to others that may help you in your personal and career goals. A time to ask for constructive criticism, feedback on projects, celebrate successes, and reward yourself. The ovulation phase is a time to take comfort in your home, engage in group exercise, and a season for saying “yes” (Tasooji, 2022).
The Luteal Phase:
The 3rd phase of our cycle is known as the Luteal phase. This is the premenstrual phase where our estrogen begins to decline and our progesterone skyrockets. This is the time to take advantage of deep restorative sleep and to experiment with the deepening of our meditation practices (Tasooji, 2022). A time where synchronicity takes place allowing for more focus and attention towards manifesting the circumstances you wish to happen. During this phase you should be open to new ideas, take naps to recharge, and ultimately slow down for moments of rest. This phase can present challenges with consolidating memory so it would be advantageous to take notes. To counter and reduce the intensity of potential mood swings that are experienced during this phase, increase your awareness to avoiding high sugary foods, or unnecessary consumption of caffeine. Positive emotional growth is abundant during this phase so it would be best to acknowledge your emotions, journal your thoughts, and avoid any major life changing decisions, arguments, or unnecessary confrontation. This is a time to put your needs in the foreground and recognize that our inner critic may be at its loudest. Take breaks to improve creativity, breathe deeply, and let go of any non-essential tasks. Give yourself the time to reflect during this phase on what is working for you, while focusing and prioritizing the tasks that are most important because multitasking may not be available to you during this phase (Tasooji, 2022).
The Menstruation Phase:
Lastly, the 4th and final phase of our cycles or the menstruation phase. This is the time to allow for new ideas to flourish and where our capabilities are most connected to our intuition. Hormone levels are at their lowest which provides the opportunity to amplify our rest and renewal. Cerebrally, our neural pathways transfer information back and forth between our right and left side more fluidly. Clarity may arise during this phase but, this is not the time for action, this is the time for reflection, a time to pause and rest. We may need breaks from physical exercise, movement, and instead focus on taking more time for meditation, being present within our bodies, and avoiding overly processed foods. Embrace physical touch and other sensory stimulants such as candles, chocolate, and exposure to nature. Trust that you know what you need and the decisions you have made. Reflect on your relationships, work projects, and understand that your energy during this phase is at its lowest. Delegate work and communicate your needs to others. Set healthy boundaries and slow down without feeling guilt for doing so (Tasooji, 2022).
Knowing this information and recognizing the different abilities that are outlined in each phase experienced will hopefully, embolden you to tap into this natural resource and harness its strengths to work for you. This information is meant to empower you during the different phases of your cycle and build upon self-awareness. Too often we dismiss our intuition and try to push through challenges without understanding why there are times we can overcome obstacles easily and times where we find it extremely daunting. The goal of this article is to begin the conversation (for most) that our periods are not a hindrance but a force of nature as consistent as the seasons, that can provide you with the tools needed to be successful and present within one’s life.
For those of you who are on birth control there may be somewhat of a hinderance to experiencing the full extent of these cycles, for which, I would encourage further discussion with your doctors. Birth control can impact not only your cycles and your hormones but, also your capabilities (future article to come detailing this). Also, those of you who experience irregular cycles, do continue to go through these phases however, potentially with different experienced time frames than from those discussed.
If you liked this blog, there’s plenty more where that came from! Join us this coming November 19, 2023 at our Tough Love Retreat to further dive into knowledge of the self and self-care! For more information and to register you can call our office at 305-445-0477 or email us at retreats@
Tasooji, C. (2022, September 29). Flow State: Unlocking Creative Potential through Menstrual Cycle Awareness. United States.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.” Diane Mariechild