Do you know your own rhythm?
OK, how many of you thought “menstrual cycle”? I’m betting at least 30%. The rest of you probably either thought “Yeah, I sleep about X hours a night” or “What does that even mean?”
A lot of us talk about authenticity, transparency, getting real with ourselves and others. We do a lot to invite this, to center our lives around it…but we still end up living on a pretty “standard” schedule, whether it’s daily, weekly, monthly or yearly. If we live in an industrialized country, it’s hard to escape, but how many of us even ask the question of what our own natural energy flow would look like?
I bring this up because I just “ticked over” in one of my deeply personal annual cycles, related to my astrological chart. In my own personal configuration, March 1 is a “birth day” for me – it’s the time when the Sun crosses my “starting line” and illuminates the beginning of a new yearly cycle.
This is especially relevant because the entire month PRIOR to this “birth day” is almost always a time of confusion, low energy, difficulty in “getting stuff done” or “moving forward”, etc. I’ve found this true for me, and actually discovered it several years ago in working with a client who wanted to know why July sucked for her every year!
The fact that my “pre-birth” month is February and I live in a winter climate makes it easy to blame on the weather, but I’ve found this over and over with clients whenever their particular “pre-birth” period ends up to be. It can actually be harder when it’s between late spring and early fall, as then people feel they have no “reason” to feel confused, lost, introverted, low energy, etc. (Yay for needing “reasons” to feel how we feel.)
Embarrassingly, I managed to forget this fact this year and spent the entirety of February wondering where the hell my get-up-and-go got-up-and-went-to. It’s hard to even remember what I did, even though I felt like I was behind the curve (i.e. my own expectations) the whole month. “Fog” doesn’t even cover it. About three days ago, I started realizing I was feeling better – I wanted to move, to reach, to build, to talk. (Witness this, my first real blog post here!)
Had I been acting as my own coach, listening to myself whine about my energetic fog, I would immediately have reminded myself that I was in my “pre-birth” time and my JOB was to compost the old year, clear that energy to make room for the new. MY new year. Not 2013, with 8 billion of my closest friends. Jan 1 is very close to the end of my own cycle, and trying to initiate a whole mess of new energy and forward movement would be…well…nothing but a mess.
Instead, when I remember that honoring my own rhythm means deliberately turning inward, letting go, and making space, for an entire month, I can be awash with gratitude for the confusion and low energy and gestational intention of my Februaries. It is a time for me to rest, to clear, and to wait, and when I remember that, I see clearing instead of confusion, resting instead of sluggishness.
What are your cycles? Do you notice? Women and men both have monthly cycles, though men often don’t realize it. The Moon pulls at all water on the planet, which is 98% of our physical makeup – her ebb and flow washes through our very cells. Do you flow with the seasons of the year, with the length of the days and nights? With your own inner seasons in an annual cycle – and do you know when it starts and ends? How do these cycles intersect with the bigger cycles of our personal growth and change, and with the biggest cycle of all as we age?
As we honor our own authenticity, bringing our unique selves to the world, let’s give ourselves permission to honor our own time.