Like me, I am sure you have A LOT going on each month. Work and family commitments, travelling time to get to places, fitting in exercise, keeping the home organised and clean, consciously eating well, catching up with family and friends…the list goes on and on.
For much of the month, this never-ending list can seem manageable, even doable, however as our estrogen levels begin to drop as we near menstruation, our hormones feel like they may not be supporting us to continue at the intense pace we were going out earlier in the month.
For many of us, the list doesn’t really change, this is the way it is, so how do you keep your spirits high when your body is dealing with fluctuating hormones too?
You see, our menstrual cycle is a great influence on our moods, energy levels, and physical changes. These changes can impact the way we can adjust to situations, and people, throughout the month. By understanding your cycle, and the four phases we travel through you can support yourself physically and emotionally, allowing you to keep a pep in your step.
Here are some simple steps to high spirits:
- Track – Start tracking your cycle, learn when in your cycle you start to feel a little edgy or down. Make a note of this in your chart each month. Becoming aware of the patterns that appear.
- Breath – when you have identified the emotions, be aware of them, but be kind. Know that is just how you are feeling due to your hormones and know that within a couple of days you will feel better, you just need to stay strong.
- Prepare – after you have tracked your cycle for a few months and have seen the pattern, pop a note in your diary for the coming month around this or these days. Make sure you book yourself some ‘feel good’ therapy. This could be some time out by yourself, or with friends, or maybe a massage or facial.
Know that you are not alone, it is estimated that over 90% of people who have a period also have symptoms throughout their menstrual cycle. Many women experience premenstrual syndrome (PMS) a week or two before their bleed. This can leave you feeling irritable, upset, nervous and anxious.
Your menstrual cycle starts on the day of your period. Your levels of estrogen and progesterone are low at this time. Low levels of estrogen influence the chemicals your brain releases. Studies have highlighted those low levels of estrogen are linked to low levels of serotonin, the “happy chemical” which leads to you feeling satisfied. So, therefore just before your period your mood can drop.
Then, after your period ends your estrogen levels then start to rise again. Your estrogen levels peak just before ovulation. Your levels of progesterone are rising at this time too. If you don’t get pregnant then your hormone levels drop again.
While this process serves to prepare your body for conception it can play havoc with your mood. And while all this is happening IN your body, your life doesn’t stop, you continue to have to deal with stress at work, with family and friends.
The Empowerment Cycle is about teaching you how to learn to use your cycle to guide you through and support you.
By tracking your cycle, you may be able to see how long this is for you and whether you are able to support yourself with things like good diet, moderate exercise or some rest and respite.