Ladies, what do you do when you’re in your moon cycle (menstruation)?
Do you honour yourself and your body during this time by slowing down? Or do you push ahead, exercise as normal and pretty much do everything as normal?
Over the past year I’ve been really honing in and learning to honour myself during this important and very sacred time. I’ve learned to see this phase as a time of deep inner reflection. Its a time when I’m not really up for meeting people (so I postpone catch-ups with friends etc if needs be) and I rather spend those few days alone.
The time of our cycle is a chance for us to reconnect to ourselves, along with releasing all that no longer serves us. B.K.S Iyengar (founder of Iyengar Yoga and is considered one of the foremost yoga teachers in the world) said that meditation must begin with the body and if nothing else, I find that on my cycle that’s the one thing that I need the most aside from restorative yoga and lots of rest.
Energetically this is a time to release what no longer serves us. Its a beautiful, quiet and very reflective healing time. There’s potential for renewal, this is our opportunity to connect to ourselves and to get to know ourselves a little better. It can be a very challenging, crazy, painful and confusing time for many of us; but we can try to use this time as ”what can I release” and ”what can I do consciously, gently and mindfully to release it”.
During this time I’ve learned to slow down on every level; work-wise and exercise wise. Work wise, I listen to my body and finish earlier from work if needs be and exercise wise I switch from my regular practice to restorative yoga. I don’t perform any dynamic yoga, inversions or dynamic pranayama exercise during this time and I’ve found this works really well for me. What I’ve come to notice, is that I move a little slower and I feel a little more tired so I honour myself by staying in bed longer if I don’t feel ready to rise.
Geeta Iyengar, daughter BKS Iyengar (founder of the Iyengar method), writes: “During menstruation, if one does inversions the blood flow will be arrested. Those who tried to do it out of enthusiasm or callousness will have noticed that the flow stops abruptly. This is certainly not good for health since it may lead to fibroids, cysts, endemetriosis, and cancer, damaging the system.”
What I’ve personally noticed from my experience of slowing down:
// My mood is more even and balanced.
// I react less (we all know this one, I’m sure many of us have felt pulled towards reacting over the simplest thing during this time. Maybe even bitten the head off our poor partner/husband for asking the wrong question?)
// It’s when I’m most pensive and experience low physical and mental energy and have noticed my creativity isn’t strong around this time. Instead I spend lots of time looking over the past month journaling what went well, what I could do differently next time, what I’ve learnt and what I want for the month ahead etc. No pushing or exceeding in anyway, just listening. I’ve noticed my creativity is at its highest from day 7-14 roughly and so I use this phase wisely -)
// I don’t seem to suffer any period pains when I honour myself in this way as I’m in a more relaxed state. If I’m pushing and doing too much I run into that stressful state which brings on period pain.
// I don’t seem to crave any of the sugary/salty foods I use to during this time. I’m sure this is a mix of many things including my diet being extremely clean wholefoods, I incorporate lots of Superfood especially maca which is known for balancing our hormones.
// I’ve been on probiotics for some time to help heal my gut and I plan to stay on them for some time. Remember all disease relates back to the gut; we need a happy and strong gut to fight against anything harmful trying to get in to our body.
// Try this Ayurvedic remedy for menstrual cramps: take one tablespoon of aloe vera gel with two pinches of black pepper three times a day until cramps disappear.
This is a time to be thankful (thankful for your body and your hormones and all it does for you daily); know that everything is there in place, in your life for a reason and may you learn how to find gratitude in your body for the miracle that your body is – all of its processes, all of its trials and tribulations. (I adore these words from Elena Brower)
Acknowledge that your heart and intuition is far more alive and far more in charge than we ever give it credit for. Learn to love your body and your cycles and work with them (not against them) to help you feel and be your best by going with the flow and accepting where you are during this time.
Yours, in love and light.
Be kind, be courageous, be yourself.
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