You could hardly sleep last night with all the ideas flooding your inner lightbulb, you feel productive and excited like there's a disney soundtrack backing your every move. The burning questions are, could this all be related to your cycle (yup) and how do you harness all this hormone harmony happening once a month to maximise both creativity and productivity? We've done some reading and we think this breaks down Menstrual Mapping, especially where you're most creative and in charge. There's also plenty of resources to further your menstrual mapping journey.
First up, no two people have the same period or experience with pain (both mentally and physically) we will be speaking broadly based on a 29 day cycle, guided by the phases of said cycle - starting with breaking down the phases and the vibe that comes with each. It's about learning your own rhythms.
- Lasts 1-5 days, but up to 7
- Here you are super logical, and processing information is a dream.
- This is the time where you are encouraged to reflect and nurture creative insight as you are resting - Claire Baker explains it better:
"Creativity requires space and time to potter about, exhale and take a break. Menstruation is the natural point in the cycle to do this. Just as the juiciest creative ideas appear mid-shower or after taking a nap, menstruation is the phase of the cycle best geared towards creative visioning and insight. I always keep a notepad handy in my winter — I’ve had book titles, marketing plans and workshop structures land effortlessly when I have my period."
The Follicular Phase (beginning of your period to ovulation)
The follicular phase, which some people call the proliferative phase, also starts on the first day of your period. It is simultaneous with the menstrual phase.
- Usually lasts 10-22 days
- An increase in oestrogen means this is when you feel more confident and powerful - energy levels are high. You're on fire.
- You're also more optimistic and inspired, GREAT for productivity.
HOT TIP: During this phase try and get lots of iron and B12 in your diet - salmon, leafy greens, grass-fed beef and then also gut-loving stuff too like kimchi and yoghurt.
- Usually lasts between 1-3 days
- You're still on an oestrogen high WAHOO, ride it (surf it?)
- Confidence is high, sex drive is there too and you're more extraverted. IE could be a good time to ask for a pay rise? Or have that meaningful chat you've been putting off.
HOT TIP: Oh no, cut carbs came up in our search, sorry about it. Loads of antioxidant rich veggies will help with energy in this time.
The Luteal Phase
- Lasts around 14 days
- PMS symptoms incoming - mood changes, acne, headaches, bloating and food cravings.
- You're calm here though thanks to progesterone, so detail focused tasks and admin should be on your list.
While we had originally thought that it was mainly our snacking that was fluctuating monthly, indeed - we were right, and wrong. Menstrual mapping isn't just being explored by those looking to conceive now but by athletes, creatives and so many more - who recognise their body is a temple ;) We loved discovering that the Brisbane Lions Women's football team track menstrual cycles, and we cannot get enough of guru Claire Baker who chats after on Instagram about the reward.
Happy mapping and more resources below. For now here is a photo of Roz harnessing her creativity.
You can learn more about the phases here.
Try a period tracker, we like Flo
Read this one from Forbes
Or book-wise, this one from Claire Baker who breaks it down into seasons with glorious illustration to match.
Give yourself a high-five