Cyclical Living

For the love of sleep

Why is sleep important to our menstrual cycle?

Ovulation (and subsequently, menstruation) is our Fifth Vital sign. If our cycle is consistently irregular, it’s a sign something could be off.

Fun fact: Ovulation begins in the brain, which is why stress, illness, travel, lack of sleep, etc. can prolong our cycles. Whether you plan on having kids or not, fertility is a sign of our whole body’s health.

Sleep plays a major role in this.

When we chart our menstrual cycle, we check in with our physical, mental, emotional & spiritual bodies, and we must do the same with our rest.

PHYSICAL // The morning ritual is praised, but what about the bedtime routine? Like when we were kids, how do we prepare for a good night’s sleep?

More often than not, the basics work best.

Disconnect from screens a couple of hours before bed (even if you don’t feel tired yet), set a firm “No phones in the bedroom” policy, and schedule time to settle your brain by doing a short yoga flow, stretching or rolling your muscles, or reading a novel.

Need something more?

Try including some carbs in your dinner a few hours before sleep (think: more potatoes), enjoying a quick walk around the block after you’ve eaten, taking a magnesium bisglycinate supplement in your nighttime routine, and cutting alcohol or, at minimum, stop drinking a few hours before you plan to sleep.

MENTAL // If you’ve ever tried being creative from a place of burn out, then you’ll know it’s impossible. Our mind demands space for peace and quiet to create, imagine and manifest.

Make a list of activities that help you disconnect. For me, these look like spending time alone in nature without my phone, writing morning pages with a spicy cup of chai, practicing yoga or meditation, or going on walks with close friends or the husband.

EMOTIONAL // When we’re in a season of busyness, it’s easy to stuff our emotions down and feel like we need to “power through” or get over it. I’ve learned it’s better to make space to feel the feelings as they arise. More often than not, they pass quicker than I thought they would.

My favourite ways to move emotions out of my body? Well, as much as I love sleeping, I love crying more. Otherwise, I ask a friend to hold space for me to vent and be heard, without offering feedback, or find a coach I love and trust to guide me through the bumpy seasons.

SPIRITUAL // As someone who has never been religious, this space felt foreign to me for a long time. Now my spirituality is near and dear to me, and it fuels my creativity and connection to my cycle in the most beautiful ways.

To connect with my spirituality, I love being present and cherishing the making of my morning coffee or tea, burning palo santo as I pull some tarot cards and journal my reflections, or drinking cacao in the forest as I listen to the trees and the birds singing.

Experiment, chart what works best for you, notice how your relationship with rest evolves and changes throughout your cycle… and share any findings in the comments below. I’d love to hear your favourite rest tips and habits!

xo Lauren

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Cycle charting is the practice of journaling how you’re feeling mentally, physically and spiritually each day with the hope of discovering monthly patterns in your behaviour and emotions, as dictated by your menstrual cycle.


"The more I dive into this place, the more I find comfort in the uncomfortable, the more I begin to notice the shifts in my mental landscape. How my mind, my body, and my spirit react to these creative endeavours differently week by week..."

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