As women, we have a monthly energy cycle, which ebbs and flows based on where we are in our cycle. These highs and lows of energy stem from the different hormones peaking at different times in the cycle, and the effect this has on not only our reproductive state, but our emotional and physical wellbeing as well. It is very normal to have days where you feel more creative, more energetic, more irritable or more flat. Sometimes, understanding when these times will come for you, and being able to adjust your activities accordingly, can help your productivity and self-understanding.
There are 4 phases in the female cycle, lasting approximately a week each. This varies from woman to woman, some phases may be shorter or longer, or your cycle may be differing lengths, altering the timings. As such this is a guide to help you understand why you may feel a certain way at different points in your cycle and can be personalised for your own body. Sometimes keeping track with a mood diary can help you to learn your own preferences.
Reproductive phase: Follicular (follicle stimulating hormone, oestrogen begins to rise)
Feeling: Dynamic, energetic
A time of high energy, the first phase starts at the end of menstruation. This is a time of growth as your hormones prepare a new egg for release in the coming days. A good time to work out, use your body and get physical tasks done.
This is also a good time to begin new projects or ideas, brainstorming or planning.
Reproductive Phase: Ovulation (high oestrogen)
Feeling: Expressive, outgoing
A very social time of the month, the week around ovulation is a great time to be getting out and connecting. Whether in a business sense with networking or events, or in a personal sense with catch ups and parties, this is the week you may feel the most outgoing, confident and comfortable in a group. A good time for communication, this week is the chance to have that tricky conversation you have been dreading or a time to connect with your partner.
This is the week for connecting, collaborating and communication.
Reproductive Phase: Luteal (increasing progesterone)
Feeling: Creative, motivated
Time to get stuck into the nitty gritty, a time for tying up loose ends and finishing off projects before the rest time next week. This is the best time for creative pursuits, working on projects or harvesting the fruits of your labour. This is the ‘get s**t done’ week, where motivation may be higher than other times, and you can push to get things done. Don’t forget to practice self-care in this phase, it is easy to get caught up with all the work you can get done.
A week for detail orientated work, finishing up projects, tying up loose ends.
Reproductive Phase: Menstrual
A time for rest, menstruation is a reset for your body to prepare for the next month ahead. A good time to recover, best to take a break from starting new projects this week (just wait till next week!). Support your body with rest times, nourishing foods and go easy on yourself this week, it is ok to take a break to recover.
The perfect time for rest, evaluating the past months endeavours, and research for upcoming tasks.
There are natural highs and lows through the month, times of high or low energy, times to push hard, and times to go easy on yourself. While you may not be able to rearrange your life to suit these weeks, being able to recognise when you are feeling a bit down and not beat yourself up for not being able to complete the to-do list can be very powerful (and good for mental health too). Where can you make changes in your life to optimise your energy?
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