Most of us know when we will get our next period and how we feel dur­ing it or just before it. But what about the weeks in between? Peo­ple with an uterus go through a men­strual cycle over and over again. Because month after month we have an ovu­la­tion, our peri­ods, hor­monal changes. We spend most of our lives in cycli­cal rhythms that have a direct influ­ence on our mood and energy. Cycle aware­ness can there­fore bring many advan­tages with it. You may ask your­self what exactly term cycle aware­ness means and how you can learn it? Then have fun reading! 

What is cycle awareness?

Cycle aware­ness is the knowl­edge and appre­ci­a­tion of the indi­vid­ual men­strual cycle and the asso­ci­ated energy and mood pat­terns. The aim is to under­stand our own body bet­ter and to learn what we need, when and above all why. Know­ing our own cycle well help us to improve our well-being. Liv­ing cycli­cally means accept­ing the body and its changes and liv­ing in har­mony with your own men­strual cycle. For a bet­ter under­stand­ing, the men­strual cycle is divided into the four sea­sons, each with its own characteristics.

4 ques­tions for more cycle awareness

In order to get to know your cycle bet­ter, it is a good idea to keep a lit­tle jour­nal where you write down in sum­mary how you are feel­ing emo­tion­ally and phys­i­cally. Because our bod­ies are both fas­ci­nat­ing and com­plex. The fol­low­ing ques­tions or areas can serve as an inspi­ra­tion for your notes: 

1. How are you doing emotionally?

How are you feel­ing today? What are you think­ing about? What are your needs?

2. How are you doing physically?

How much energy do you have? What do you feel like doing? Are you active? How is your digestion? 

3. Any­thing out of the ordinary?

Were there any spe­cial moments or major events, such as a big trip or a job change? Any­thing that was dif­fer­ent from the routine? 

4. Where are you in your men­strual cycle?

Aspects related to your men­stru­a­tion can also be help­ful. It is best to always add the day of your cycle to your notes. The first day of your period is also the first day of your cycle. New period = new cycle. This will make it eas­ier to com­pare your notes later on, and pat­terns in your men­strual cycle are eas­ier to find using the cycle days.

Nur­tur­ing the rela­tion­ship to our body

It is impor­tant that you take notes over sev­eral cycles each day and reflect briefly on the day. Only then can you develop a bet­ter under­stand­ing of your own needs. Based on your own notes, you can make con­scious deci­sions for the com­ing months and have a bet­ter sense of how you will feel when. Liv­ing cycli­cally is not some­thing that we learn overnight or that can be rad­i­cally imple­mented. Unless we throw every­thing over­board once and start again from scratch. It is rather the attempt to align your life based on your own feel­ings, moods and inner sea­sons. Most of us will slowly but surely move towards more cycle aware­ness. Grad­u­ally we can build more and more cycle aware­ness into our every­day life, into our rou­tines. And in this way, con­sciously nur­ture the rela­tion­ship with our­selves and our own body.

Are you ready to finally under­stand your body & your mood swings bet­ter and learn cycle aware­ness? Then our online course “Cycle Aware­ness as a Super­power” is per­fect for you!

Zyklusbewusstein, Zyklusachtsamkeit, Online-Kurs, Onlinekurs, im Einklang leben, Stephanie Schäper, Koasdesign Studio, Stimmungsschwankungen verstehen, Kraft des Zyklus, Zykluswissen, Menstruationszyklus, Selbstfürsorge Menstruation, Innere Jahreszeiten, Zyklusphasen, Vulvani, Vulvani Academy

Exam­ple: How I plan my vaca­tion accord­ing to my cycle

For exam­ple, when pos­si­ble, I plan my trav­els accord­ing to my cycle. On the first days of my period I love to rest and to just be at home. So it’s best if there is noth­ing on the travel plan those days. I espe­cially avoid longer bus trips or big­ger excur­sions. In the mid­dle of my cycle I can be active every day again and even mul­ti­ple-day-hikes are not a prob­lem at all. 

The prob­lem: Liv­ing in a patri­ar­chal world

Our soci­ety is based on per­for­mance and our world is dom­i­nated by men. Cycli­cal life finds lit­tle space or place in our world. Far too often our time is deter­mined by every­day life, work and oblig­a­tions, which allow lit­tle oppor­tu­nity for a flex­i­ble orga­ni­za­tion of our own energy. We must func­tion, day after day. We are often anchored in fixed struc­tures. The phase of the cycle in which we find our­selves is ignored. For cen­turies, men­stru­a­tion has been asso­ci­ated with lim­i­ta­tions or weak­ness and the rest of the men­strual cycle, mean­ing the time between peri­ods, is sim­ply ignored. This is because every­thing is designed to func­tion evenly, but for men­stru­at­ing peo­ple this can quickly man­i­fest itself in phys­i­cal period prob­lems, such as men­strual cramps or PMS.

Why it is worth liv­ing cyclically

Our own body and the cycli­cal com­pass are at the cen­tre of our atten­tion. If we know who we are, we can work with our­selves and not against us. Through cycle aware­ness we learn to lis­ten to our inner voice again and to trust our own intu­ition. This in turn can help us in our self-esteem and self-deter­mi­na­tion. To live cycli­cally also means strength. Because there is strength to arrive and live in one’s own body rhythm. It often feels more true, more con­sis­tent. And it is no longer a con­stant strug­gle to have to func­tion per­fectly every day. Cycle aware­ness gives us the space to have dif­fer­ent needs or per­son­al­i­ties. Because it is ok and even nor­mal that we feel dif­fer­ent on dif­fer­ent days. Liv­ing in har­mony with your­self opens up undreamt-of pos­si­bil­i­ties and brings your real poten­tial to the sur­face. Because the nat­ural change of our energy in the course of the men­strual cycle is not a dis­ad­van­tage, but rather a great enrich­ment. Just like the sea­sons. Each time brings its own charm and spe­cial fea­tures – so does our men­strual cycle.

Accep­tion the cycle as a friend

And it is time to take our cycle and make it our new best friend, to under­stand it with­out any words needed. Because in it lies both peace and strength.

Book rec­om­men­da­tion

Do you want to learn more about the specifics of the men­strual cycle and cycle aware­ness? Then I can rec­om­mend the book ‘Wild Power: dis­cover the magic of your men­strual cycle and awaken the fem­i­nine path to power’.

Britta Wiebe, period education, Vulvani
Britta 
Co-Founder Vul­vani | britta@vulvani.com | Web­site | + posts

Britta Wiebe is the co-founder of Vul­vani. She loves research­ing, writ­ing and design­ing new arti­cles or inno­v­a­tive edu­ca­tional con­cepts about men­stru­a­tion all day long. When she is not trav­el­ling the world, she enjoys spend­ing time with her loved ones in the beau­ti­ful city of Ham­burg in Germany.