And, since the dawn of civilization, women also intuitively knew about that ‘time of life’ when they grow wiser and emotionally and spiritually stronger and braver. In traditional cultures, menopausal years are empowering years of wisdom and experiences, they relate the story of a soul reconnecting with its ultimate source of wisdom!
To regain the health of your second chakra, you need to learn from this traditional women’s wisdom. You need to stop suppressing your feelings with legitimate distractions and sweet indulgences and silencing your pain with pain “killers”. You need to listen to your Body Whispers® and follow your intuitive wisdom.
This week, let’s delve into the meanings and wisdoms of our feminine cycle… Let’s learn how to flow with its delicate nature and tune in to the valuable whispers our body is sending us every month
The female menstrual cycle with its regular repeated pattern of hormonal change carries regular repeated pattern of emotional change. It holds much more than the physical reproductive power. It holds the power of producing ideas, meaning, missions, and changes. By understanding its pattern, you can access your own deeply held feelings and needs, you can listen to your body and understand what is bothering you, what is annoying you, what makes you stressed, unhappy, sad, or frustrated and thus learn how to align your steps back on the right track.
Emotionally and spiritually speaking, we can divide the female menstrual cycle into four phases:
Follicular phase: starts with the period (day 1 of the bleeding) and ends by ovulation (mid cycle around day 13)
Follicular phase is the time when the eggs are ripening in women ovaries. At this time of the month your
- Estrogen is balanced
- Progesterone is low
Women at this time of the month are in their nurturing mode. They have the energy and mental ability for nurturing others… other people, other ideas, other projects… They are in the peak of their self-expression, quite sociable and outgoing. They are full of enthusiasm, open to new ideas, experimentation, explorations and experiences. Their left-brain logical thinking is dominating, so they seem very understanding, able to plan, analyze and organize their life and their work. They have full control over their thoughts and actions knowing what to say and what to hold back.
2. Ovulation: Illumination
Ovulation occurs around day 12 or 13 of the cycle. This is when the creative nurturing and exploration that took place during the first follicular phase is ready to give its fruit. A balance in the left-right sides of the brain (analytical-holistic thinking) is taking place and your ideas become clearer. You seem to suddenly understand life much better.
The ovulation is initiated by a rise in two hormones secreted from the pituitary gland in our brain (FSH and LH). These hormones cause your estrogen level to rise. Estrogen, besides being essential for ovulation, is also a brain messenger that stimulates your left-brain activity… more logical thinking, verbal fluency and understanding. At the same time, testosterone is secreted to increase libido. Again, testosterone is not merely a sex hormone, it enhances your visual-spatial mental powers, functions of your right brain.
So now at this time of the month, you become sexually attractive and more receptive to the outside world, more willing to care and being cared for, to give and receive love. You are more relaxed, content and understanding. You are in the peak of your mental and emotional creativity with clear view and ideas.
It is like when the egg is ready for fertilization in our uterus, we are also emotionally and mentally fertile land for creative and innovative insights.
We came to look at this stage of our menstrual cycle as “the good stage” since we are much more valued by the outside world.
3. Then comes the Luteal Phase with its Premenstrual Nightmare: Incubation & Percolation
If no fertilization takes place, the cycle continues. The sexual phase is wrapped up and preparations are made in the uterus (and the body) for another cycle.
The Luteal phase starts with ovulation and continues after that with all the premenstrual or PMS days ending when we start the bleeding again signalling the beginning of the new cycle.
During the luteal phase, and before the period, estrogen levels drop.
Estrogen is known to increase the production rate and receptor density of serotonin (your feeling good neuropeptide), dopamine (your motivation hero), epinephrine and nor epinephrine (your stress-managing hormones) and Beta-endorphins (your natural morphines). So when estrogen drops, all those neuropetide levels drop with it… This explains the low mood, low motivation and low tolerance of the PMS time of the month.
During the luteal phase, the sudden drop of estrogen leads to progesterone dominance. Progesterone is responsible for calming down your brain chatter and cooling off your brain over excitement. Nature is designed this way to actually give us access to more clarity and calming time… This phase of your cycle is actually a blessing, a gift… you can see it as a little window that opens every month for you to peek into your intuitive wisdom and see more clearly. If you tune in and trust your Body Whispers®, you will see that this phase is there to give you a much needed time for yourself. Time to calm down and shift your focus inward. This is a right-brain oriented time, an invitation to see the ‘big picture’, to reflect and ponder.
The luteal phase is the perfect chance for whole life integration, for a holistic view. It initiates a meditation and evaluation mode that makes you wonder: what did I achieve so far? What needs to change in my life? What aspects of my work/relationship/social life aren’t working for me?
The luteal phase is there to tell you that you need to slow down in order for you to hear your intuitive voice and heed your inner wisdom.
During the follicular phase, your left-brain was more active, your logical thinking and analytical mind were alert, you were able to calculate your steps and rethink your words before uttering them, you knew what to say and what to hold back. During the Luteal phase, though, you find it harder to control your emotions and hold back your anger and tongue slips. This is the phase when you are harshly judged by your surroundings or highly medicated to turn off those inner whispers that society usually find inappropriate.
Telling a depressed, furious or anxious PMS sufferer to learn “self-control” or “manage her stress”, is like adding fuel to a raging fire… not only useless, but highly damaging. The debris that surface during this time of the month are but signs and warnings… your subconscious is sending you messages through your Body Whispers®. Silencing the messages is like shooting the messenger. The debris will still be there, but instead of rising to the surface, you are sending them inward to wreak havoc not only on your emotions but also on your physical body.
We all need to slow down and listen, we need to notice and learn, we need to connect with our inner wisdom and there is no better time to do that than our pre-menstrual window. During your luteal phase, your intuition is at its peak. You just need to tune in and trust. Journaling is most essential and most valuable at this time of the cycle. It helps you discover the missing elements in your life, unveil your hidden fears, worries, and bottled emotions and see clearly once more.
If we refuse to slow down and listen, the calming down of this time of the cycle turns into isolation and repression… and you end up with mood swings, anxiety, overwhelm, and depression.
4. Menses: Organization & Reorientation
The first day of bleeding starts our next cycle. The period is a biological and physiological cleansing phase. As your uterus is shedding its lining to prepare itself for a new cycle, it is time for you to start shedding your fears, anger, and worries; and reorienting your life for a new beginning.
Menstruation is the ultimate time for letting go of what is troubling you, of your negative feelings, destructive emotions, fears, frustrations, blames, shame and grief. It is the ultimate time for reorientation, reorganization and ridding yourself of old baggage.
Take a moment now to tune into your body and reflect…
- Which phase of the cycle are you in?
- How to you feel, emotionally, physically and mentally?
- Is there any part of your life/ of your soul that needs your attention?