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Mindfulness Monday: Go With the Flow

Here’s another one for the ladies, but guys with women in their lives could benefit from taking a read as well!

In a go-go-go and largely patriarchal culture, a woman’s period is more often thought of as a nuisance than a spiritual gift.  It is common to pop in a tampon, down some Midol with a large cup of coffee, and go about our business on Day 1 rather than rest and reflect.  Most of us learn so little about our cycle that we have no idea how to care for ourselves during different phases, let alone what these phases are.  What if instead of looking at menstruation as a disability we appreciated what it represents? What if instead of looking at menopause as ostensibly being put out to pasture we recognized it as a time when a woman can truly step into her wisdom and power? Fighting with the natural cycles of life can be exhausting.  Like the seasons or our own circadian rhythm, we can benefit physically and mentally from acknowledging the truth of what we need.

So what is a woman with a job, family, and all the other trappings of modern day life supposed to do?  It isn’t necessary to retire to the “red tent” (although I’ll admit, some months this does sound rather appealing…).  Read the following tips to make subtle changes to rock your feminine nature:

-Consider knowing your body a political act:  How much of our power can we actually step into when we don’t know the basic anatomy and processes of our own bodies? Instead of buying into the shame culture that views women’s bodies as scary and unpredictable, realize that humanity wouldn’t exist if you didn’t bleed every month. Knowledge is the key to power and when we can look at ourselves with interest rather than apprehension the change we feel internally can echo globally.

-Take note: There are plenty of online charts and apps that can help you track your cycle.  Keep track of where you are and take notes so you can better understand and respond to monthly fluctuations.

-Adjust your routine: While it may not be realistic to shirk all responsibility, think about where you might be able to ease up at certain times of the month.  Conversely, utilize the more energetic phases to move projects forward, accomplish goals, and be more forthcoming with others.

For more resources to apply the ideas above, visit the Joyful Gym Rat on Facebook and Twitter


Ebb and flow, photo credit again this week goes to my mom!

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