Have you ever wanted to write a book, start a business or pursue a creative project of some sort but get knocked by your own inner critic? This is very common. The good news is that our hormones and menstrual cycle can shine a little light on why this happens and how to work with it so we can support ourselves in our creative endeavours.

The menstrual cycle is made up of four key phases as our hormones, oestrogen and progesterone, ebb and flow each month. The change of hormones means that we can feel quite different physically, mentally and emotionally on a weekly basis. This includes the strength of our inner critic. When we get to know who we are during each phase and understand how our menstrual cycle presents itself, we can then come to understand our strengths and vulnerabilities around the cycle.

happy young woman reading and drinking coffe

Menstrual phase: Approx. days 1 – 5. This is a time of low hormones and therefore low energy. When we learn to rest a little more during this time, it allows the nervous system to relax. It can be a very restorative time. Like a phone on low battery, it’s a good time to recharge, even just a small amount. Allow the mind to wander and let creative ideas float through. If the inner critic shows up, ask it kindly to leave because we can be physically and emotionally more vulnerable during this time.

Preovulation phase: Approx. days 6 – 11. The hormone oestrogen starts to pick up and energy will rise. However, we can still feel tender, so let yourself move slowly from within in your approach and mindset. If creative ideas came through during the menstrual phase, now is a time to give them more thought. Again, don’t let the inner critic in because it can be too harsh during this phase. Instead, be kind to yourself, let creativity flow, get in the sandbox with your ideas and share only with trusted friends who support you.

close up of hands painting

Ovulatory phase: Approx. days 12 – 19. This is the high energy, creative and prolific time of the menstrual cycle. Let yourself flow, write, produce, paint. Go for it! It’s a good time to get lots of work done.

Premenstrual phase: Approx. days 20 – 28. Now is the time in the cycle to allow the inner critic in. The inner critic has a role to play but it’s about working with it when we have resilience and something to work with. It’s a time to sit down and edit, to question rationally and kindly with yourself if something is good or not and how you want to change it.

Top tip: To support creativity, it’s always a good idea to support the physical body and be mindful of our hormonal balance. Take steps to eat a balanced diet, get enough sleep and exercise and for additional nutritional support, try a high quality supplement such as Cleanmarine For Women.