26 Feb Hormonology Guide: Looking up or looking down?
FEBRUARY 26, 2021–Sounds surprising, but you tend to look up or down–both literally and figuratively–depending on where you are in your menstrual cycle. Read on to find out why….
1st half of your cycle (1st day of period thru ovulation): You’re looking UP
As estrogen rises on these “follicular” days in your cycle, this hormone boosts your mood, confidence, optimism and derring-do. The result: You’re more hopeful and dreamy so you enjoy more moments where you’re feeling positive. Your mood is up.
You’re also physically looking up more! That’s because rising estrogen makes you more curious about the world around you. You’re interest is piqued by virtually anything: a passing cloud, a person you spot in the distance, a bird that flies by. It’s easy to be distracted by all you see because rising estrogen makes them so much more fascinating on these cycle days.
2nd half of your cycle (day after ovulation thru day before your period): You’re looking DOWN
As estrogen dips twice and progesterone rises and falls during this “luteal” phase of your cycle, these hormonal changes can make you wary, cautious, worried, pessimistic and cynical. As a result, you tend to be more doubtful and realistic, which nudges you to the negative side of your emotional spectrum. This means you’re mood can be down a bit more frequently than in the first half of your cycle.
You’re also physically looking down more! That’s because research shows that the hormone-fueled wariness you experience on these cycle days makes you more alert for danger you might encounter. This spurs you to scour the ground where you’re walking more carefully, for example, to avoid potholes, snakes (I do that a lot where I live in Florida!) or those foot-spiking LEGO toys your kid left on the floor. You may also be casting glances behind you to ensure you’re safe as you walk, drive or bike. It’s easier to feel a sense of unease about your well-being because of the heightened worry in these cycle days.
You can learn more about these and other hormonal effects in my book, 28 Days: What Your Cycle Reveals About Your Moods, Health & Potential, available at Amazon. It’s the book that launched the cycle-syncing movement!
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