Yikes…. yikes… yikes. Something has got to be wrong with me.
^^Me, about two days before my period.
When I’m not crying about nothing or eating lots of dark chocolate, I’m probably sitting alone in a corner wondering what is wrong with me. Why am I feeling like the whole world has gone dark and I am utterly alone? When the period itself does arrive, I gotta admit I’m often a little relieved! There was a reason for the insanity after all!
Girls, it really is a rough time for us. When we are approaching our periods, since our hormones are going crazy there are a lot of physical changes… bloating, acne, food cravings, and so much more. I don’t know about you, but I end up in this awful (and honestly pretty stinking hilarious) cycle of “I feel fat, my face is bloated… gross! I have a ton of acne everywhere! Ugh… I’m so hungry but I feel fat so I can’t eat… nobody likes me and I’m alone in the world. *massive amounts of tears.*
I might be exaggerating a little bit here but everything does hit us at once during those “PMS” days.
I’m here to tell you two things today.
- What is really going on with our bodies during those 2 days?
- What can we do to make our days sunshiny and happy in the midst of an apocalyptic-type-of-hopeless mood?
First, what is really going on? There’s a really complicated answer for that. Your period is not just a seven day period, it is an entire month (or longer in some cases) of hormonal fluctuations! We wrote a blog post about a “normal period” that you can read here.
The part of the “period” or “cycle” that we are referring to here is the luteal phase. During this phase, you experience a surge of progesterone. Progesterone is the hormone that boosts your metabolism (hey, extra hunger!), increases your basal body temperature, and can increase breast soreness (check out this awesome article by Ava Women that tells you all about your cycle in depth). When you start feeling those period emotions and symptoms, just remember that they are a good thing, not something to worry about. If you are experiencing excessive symptoms, that may be something to get checked out.
Second, how can we deal with these darned period emotions? Here are 3 tips for you.
This may seem a little obvious at first, but give it a try! I have found that one pitifully half-hearted smile actually brightens my mood tremendously and leads to a genuinely happy mood! According to this article by NBC News, smiling is actually proven to boost your immune system and lower your heart rate! While you’re at it, take a moment to scribble a quick list of what you value in your life. Positivity can move mountains, folks! Believe it!
2. Create a happy habit
I don’t know about you, but I LOVE looking forward to things. A few years ago, I decided that I would buy myself a bar of dark chocolate when my period came around. I shared this with my husband when we first started dating, and now dark chocolate seems to magically show up when my period emotions start kicking in. ???? Believe it or not, having that little piece of chocolate-y happiness to look forward to really helps me to brave through those why-am-I-even-crying-right-now moments!
3. Take care of your body
Your poor body is going through a h*ck of a lot during the menstrual flow days… why not show it a little extra love?! It’s so important to get good rest, eat whole, nourishing foods, and incorporate a little light exercise into your daily routine while your body is feeling down in the dumps. There’s nothing like a good night’s rest to start the day off right!
I know I promised three tips… but this one is just so good! Sprinkle your day with peppermint candies. ???? Seriously though, peppermint has so many wonderful benefits! It calms the emotions and mind, helps your brain to focus, and it even relieves pain and nausea! Soothe your spirit during an emotional moment by sipping some peppermint herbal tea, or rubbing a little peppermint essential oil on your temples and belly (make sure to dilute it with a carrier oil or else it might irritate your skin).
These steps won’t erase your period emotions, but they will help you to stay positive and keep believing the best as you journey through this life as a woman!
And hey… being a woman is worth smiling about. ????