September is PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) Awareness Month, so we're diving into content about hormone health, periods, PCOS, and more - and kicking things off with a post about how you can learn more about yourself (periods included).
Read all the way through or just skip to the bottom if you like discounts like me!
1| Learn about your cycle - because it's not just about your period
High school health class would have us believe that all of womanhood is summed up in the few days you actually get a period per cycle, but the star of the show is actually ovulation - when your body releases an egg. Having a working understanding of the two phases of the cycle (the follicular and luteal phases) as well as some of the hormones at plan can be super empowering and give you more insight into conversations with your OB/GYN.
2 | Track your cycle with an app or calendar
Periods are one of the best indicators of women's health there is - so keeping tabs on yours can be a great way to learn about your body plus bring data into a conversation with a healthcare provider.
Note: if you're on hormonal birth control, you don't get a "true" period - your body is preventing ovulation so any bleeding you have is breakthrough bleeding or withdrawal bleeding (if you take birth control pills and have placebo days).
Kindara App (pairs well with the Fertility Awareness Method of birth control)
3 | Use journal prompts to reflect & grow
Cheesy title, powerful practice. I'm not a huge one for journaling, but I've found with very specific prompts it's easy for me to jot something down about my thoughts, feelings, or day.
Reflectly App - free journaling with prompts that take <5 minutes out of your day.
The Intuitive Eating Workbook - highly, highly recommend this for all people. It guides you through the 10 principles of intuitive eating and encourages self-reflection to help you move out of the diet mindset.
"Rose & thorn" - I love this practice of writing down/typing out/thinking about the best part of your day (rose) and some pain points from your day (thorn). It's a great way to cultivate gratitude as well as provide some insight into what may improve your day tomorrow, knowing that some things are out of your grasp and some you can influence.
List-making - This is my favorite practice as a Type-A ENFJ because it's quick and to-the-point. List out things you find refreshing, things that would be included in your perfect day, a bucket list - this is a fab way to get journaling if you're not into writing full sentences/paragraphs or getting too introspective right off the bat.
4 | Try something new
You know that well-meaning but annoying phrase, "You'll never know until you try?" Well... it works well for this post. Try a new form of movement, a new food, a new activity - shaking up your routine and doing something unexpected is a great way to not only provide some variety but to learn about yourself. If you like it - great! If you don't - also great! Either way, you have new information to work with and you know one more thing.
BONUS | Learn about your reproductive health with Modern Fertility
In honor of PCOS Awareness Month, I've partnered with Modern Fertility, a company that offers at-home fertility hormone testing, to give away discounts for THREE test kits. With a simple finger stick (or blood draw you can do in a lab!), you can do things like gain insight into your ovarian reserve, get access to free webinars to learn what your results mean, and spend 1:1 time chatting with a fertility nurse.
I'm giving away these exclusive discounts on my Instagram page so pop over there to see how to enter!