How to Optimize the Phases of Your Menstrual Cycle


While PMS is more-or-less treated as a biological inconvenience, the true issue here is that workplaces are set up to accommodate the male hormone cycle while leaving the rest of us to figure it out on our own.



According to Harvard Men’s Health Watch, men’s hormone cycles – or testosterone production – waxes and wanes over a 24-hour cycle, with production being highest at 8 a.m. and lowest at 9 p.m. In short, men’s hormone cycles start afresh everyday.

On the other hand, women’s hormone cycles can last anywhere between 24 to 35 days, with an average of 28 days. In short, women feel very differently from one day to the next, depending on where they are in their cycle.

While it may not be possible to restructure your work schedule to accommodate your menstrual cycle, it is possible to learn about the different seasons of your menstrual cycle and harness them to unlock your true potential. At the very least, we all need to stop beating ourselves up for not feeling 100% everyday.

1. Day 1-5: Winter (Menstruation)

As the name suggests, winter is a phase when your hormone levels are at their lowest, while your body slowly sheds the endometrium. You will likely feel more tired than usual, and may not feel so inclined to engage with the outside world. Take this time to rest and do more introspective work.

Suggested activities –
journaling, reviewing analytics

2. Day 6-12: Spring (Follicular Phase)

In the spring phase, your estrogen levels are rising and your eggs are maturing. You are gradually feeling feel more energized and connected with the outside world. Take this time to soak in new skills and set your intentions for the month ahead.

Suggested activities –
long-term goal setting, planning future projects, learning a new skill

3. Day 13-18: Summer (Ovulation)

As your body prepares for ovulation, your estrogen levels are peaking and your energy levels are at their highest. Reserve your socializing and networking for this phase, when you are the most open to outside stimulation.

Suggested activities –
speaking engagements, networking events, taking your team out to dinner

4. Day 19-28: Autumn (Luteal Phase)

As the name suggests, autumn is a phase when your body winds down in preparation for the winter. Your estrogen levels have dropped off and are replaced by the more stabilizing progesterone, which causes your energy levels to decrease while calming your mind and balancing out your blood sugar levels. Take this time to batch chores and detail-oriented tasks.

Suggested activities–
bookkeeping, deep cleaning your apartment