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This Is How You Can Hack Your Period For More Energy

Kate Northrup
Written by Kate Northrup
This Is How You Can Hack Your Cycle For More Energy

Image by Katarina Simovic / Stocksy

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Understanding our cycles is important because it can tell us a lot about our overall health including our hormone health. In Kate Northrup's new book Do Less, she shares practical and actionable tips for making more time for the things you want and need for your health and happiness. She breaks down the societal norm that doing more and continually striving for productivity at the cost of health equals success. One of her recommendations? Listening to what your body is telling you. In this excerpt from her book, she shares why tracking your cycle is helpful for better understanding your body and how to get started.

I've found that aligning my activities and the focus of my weeks with the phases of my cycle or the phases of the moon if I'm not cycling has been miraculous in terms of giving me enough energy for everything.

Women are cyclical creatures, and when we start working with our cycles instead of fighting them, we tap into our superpowers of manifestation and creation.

Our bodies are so wise. Every different kind of task you might need to do will fit into one of the four phases of your menstrual cycle or the coinciding cycle of the moon, and when you begin to align your schedule with your cycles, you'll find that you have more energy for the task at hand when you're doing it at the right time of your cycle.

Now, this does not mean that 100 percent of your activities will be scheduled during the appropriate phase. Life doesn't work that way. There are way too many variables, unknowns, and unexpected things that come up.

But if you can try to do even 10 to 20 percent of the ideal activities within the optimum phase for those activities, you'll be amazed by the kind of momentum you create and how replenished you begin to feel, as opposed to feeling drained.

Look into the phases of your menstrual cycle

As a quick review, here are the phases of your menstrual cycle with the coinciding lunar phase, to use if you're not cycling, with the kind of activities that are ideal for that phase.

  • Follicular/waxing crescent: starting things, brainstorming, planning
  • Ovulation/full moon: connecting, getting out there, collaboration, communication
  • Luteal/waning crescent: detail-oriented work, bringing projects to completion, tying up loose ends
  • Menstrual/new moon: rest, evaluation, and research

The simple act of tracking your cycle and the moon will do wonders for your ability to have more energy because you won't be wasting energy beating yourself up for feeling the way you feel when it's completely natural to feel that way during the particular phase of your cycle.

I continue to be shocked by the amount of time women spend beating themselves up for feeling more inward for half the month. Our culture has told us that we're supposed to be "on and out" all month because it celebrates the traits of the masculine over the feminine, and being outward is a masculine trait. (Remember, this is not about male or female. For example, I'm a woman who has more of a tendency toward being "on and out." So that particular masculine trait is very strong in me.)

But the luteal and menstrual phases of our cycle (or the waning phase of the lunar cycle between the full moon and the new moon), which is a full half of the month, are a more inward time. And that inward time is hugely valuable! It's when we can get so much traction in completing projects and gain important insights from a combination of our logical and intuitive minds, when our brain is the most wired for connecting both hemispheres during our menstrual phase. Imagine that you have a project at work that is going to require some brainstorming and planning, some collaboration with other team members, some sitting down and doing the work of getting things on paper and actually putting the ideas into a form that is useful for your company. Before this project moves on to the next phase, it also will require some research.


Honor your energy levels

Wouldn't it be magical if instead of trying to push through what you're currently feeling emotionally or physically, you actually honored where your energy is and did the different parts of the project at the different times of your cycle over 28 days that would make you poised to capitalize on the kind of energy that your body or the cosmos is experiencing at that time?

Partnering with your body and the cosmos in terms of what phase of your cyclical nature you're currently in is one of the smartest ways to do less yet have more...and certainly one of the smartest ways to experience enough energy for everything.

Consider tracking your cycle

When you track your own experience of the different days of your cycle and different phases of your cycle (or the moon), over time you start to get really good data on how you feel at different times of your 28-day-ish rotation.

If you look back over three months of Daily Energy Tracker data and find, for example, that on Day 20 of your cycle you always feel like being alone and doing work that doesn't require you to talk to anyone, instead of scheduling meetings and outings on Day 20, you can always set yourself up for success by making that a solo workday.

When you get to know your own energetic patterns intimately, you can then begin to design your life around them and also let the key people in your life know about them so they can be helpful as well.

And do you want your passion for wellness to change the world? Become A Functional Nutrition Coach! Enroll today to join our upcoming live office hours.


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