If periods gross you out (or you’re a male, but I feel like most males don’t read my fertility posts anyways…) you might want to skip this post!
I read Christiane Northrup’s ‘Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom’ a few months ago. If you’ve ever the seen the book – it’s a hunkin’ size of a book. And it’s filled with wonderful guidance on how women can harness our hormones to work in our favor.
At first, it seemed a little too zen-y for me. I didn’t buy the fact that our cycles could really affect our state of mind enough to notice. She presented the notion that in phase 1 of our cycles (menstruation through end of first infertile phase) women feel the urge to clean and purge our lives of anything cluttered. During phase 2 (fertile phase of beginning of ovulation until after ovulation) women are at a creative peak, most in tune with intuition, and generally have a heightened sense of self-esteem and confidence. And lastly, during phase 3 (infertile phase after ovulation until menstruation begins), women are reflective, giving consideration to the things that aren’t working in our lives.
I took this all with a grain of salt – it seemed really cool, but didn’t seem that critical in my life. Then a couple weeks later, on a weekday night, I found myself procrastinating a work project and cleaning out my closet randomly. Then I started vacuuming my room. I thought, “My God – look how dirty these floors are.” Then I had a flashback to Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom. Where was I? Phase 1. I laughed it off – thinking it was probably just a coincidence.
Then I started working on Fertility Matters Promotions. I was psyched to blend my graphic video editing world with my passion of fertility. I created logos, started doodling ideas, I scribbled catchy one-liners in a notebook. (They’re coming along quite nicely, I hope to have some up on the blog by New Years.) Where was I then? Phase 2. Then, I halted on the promos for a bit and reconsidered how I would debut them – I’m thinking about creating a blog just for Fertility Matters Promotions. This period of reflection – you guessed it, was in phase 3.
When you’re in tune with your hormones – it’s makes a BIG difference. It’s awesome. Now – we don’t live in a world where we get the luxury of “Oh sorry Boss, I’m in phase 3 – I can’t really harness my creativity right now, guess we’ll have to wait ‘til next month.” But when we are in tune with what phase we’re in – I believe we can make our outcomes (with whatever we’re doing!) that much better.
This cycle of cleaning-creating-reflecting can be so powerful for flourishing. We can purge the things that aren’t working in phase 1. We can create and design with confidence in phase 2. And in phase 3, we can prepare to cleanse in phase 1 again by reflecting what needs absolving. Every good business (wo)man knows that to be productive, you have to have periods of unproductivity. For instance, it’s a damn good thing we’re not always in the creative phase 2! We’d never take a step back and say, “What is working here and what’s not?”
Women of the 21st century typically abandon the fact that we have hormones – in fact, hormones have a pretty bad reputation. When the word ‘hormone’ is said, we think mood swings and food cravings. I want that to change. Hormones are there for a reason – we can use them to tell us how to be most productive. I, personally, think women’s hormones make us women. And as for the men…..well.
I don’t know what exactly men’s hormone cycle is, but I’m pretty sure the cleaning part occasionally gets left out…