It occured to me, that with all of the nutrition + self-care + cycle awareness information I offer, one might get the idea that I effortlessly follow every one of these suggestions and live a life free of period pain. A life, that instead is filled with the bliss of always putting my needs and my health first.
Well, let me tell you, my friends: that is *so* far from the truth.
I still very much struggle with making time for myself. With establishing, but mostly with staying with self-care rituals and routines. And with hormonal imbalances.
I am not writing this out of self-pitty or to gain your sympathy.
I have simply noticed recently, how much I (still) fall into the trap of thinking I need to change EVERYTHING. And PRONTO! I deeply wish for you to read these pages and not feel pulled into this vortex. That is why I’m sharing my struggles with you.
I have been dealing with hormonal imbalances for close to a decade and as my cycle awareness grows, my symptoms have lessened or become more managable (as tends to be the case for people who start charting their cycles). I know, however, that giving up or cutting waaaaay back on sugar and coffee could/would do wonders for my hormonal health. As would cutting back on my intake of soy products [note: I’m vegan].
Since I am in the ‘summer’ stage of my cycle (that is, the second week, or follicular phase approaching ovulation for those more inclined towards health care terms than symbolisms), I have tons of energy and resolve to turn a new leaf and finally tackle these two hormonal health issues [why are they issues, you ask? check out these pages to find out!]. Well…
Does that sound like a loving way to look at myself and my body to you? In the quiet moments, when the energy frenzy inside my mind has died down and I allow myself the time to reflect, it sounds like my inner super-woman is trying to run the show again! The truth is, it is simply not healthy to radically change one’s diet by eliminating three (sugar, coffee and soy, in my case) major components of daily intake immediately and in one go. Plus, this kind of “self optimization” causes various stress responses in the body, going from eliminating the #2 cause of hormonal imbalances (high blood sugar) to the #1 cause (stress!). Yay…
I have said this out loud and written it down and read it written by people whose knowledge and advice I respect very much many a time, but I guess I just need to “hear” it again:
Slow. It. Down
You (I) want to change to a more hormone balancing diet [substitute: way of managing your schedulle / treating yourself / etc.] ? Beautiful! Let’s pick one specific thing we want to change/incorporate and live with that for a while. Sense, how your body feels, with this change. Observe your mind. Feel the shifts in your energy. After at least two weeks and purely based on your experience, decide if the change has served you well.
It has? Perfect! I congratulate you on finding your way towards hormonal health.
It has not? No worries! There are many things left for you to try and, I promise, you are not alone.
My choice for this May: cutting back on sugar. What’s yours?