women

PMS as a positive bio-psycho-spiritual feedback loop

Jungian analyst Ann Ulanov describes the feminine consciousness as periodic and rhythmic. We wax and wane. “At ovulation”, she says, “a woman’s body is receptive and fertile. She may then feel an emotional expansiveness, an abundance of sexual energy, a new potency in her creative ideas and inspirations. If her ego is not touch with this phase of her cycle, she often squanders her energy in increased bysyness”.

On the basis of clinical observations in her practice, Dr. Northrup believes that if we routinely stay busy and block the natural flow of information that comes to us in the luteral, premenstrual, and menstrual phases of the cycle, then we are more likely to experience symptoms of PMS. Both Dr. Northrup and I have observed that women tend to become preoccupied with negative ruminations in the latter part of the cycle. Things that may be bothering us, but that we are unwilling to confront, tend to come to light as if they are being flushed from uncoscious to the conscious so that we can attend to them.

One of the most impressive things about the human body, is that discomfort is rarely wasted. It is usually part of a feedback system whose final goal is to restore homeostasis. Its occurence can then be appreciated as part of a biological feedback loop that is mean to attract our atention to the question, ” What is happening in my life – in the  web of relationships to self , others, and the natural world, that is blocking the flow of energy and producing these symptoms?”

Our brain and hormones, however, conspire to create a certain interval durind each month when we are neurophysiologically less available for joy and more tuned in to the release of difficult emotions that may have been building up all month. This emotional housecleaning is wrongly viewed as bitchiness or complaining, but when seen rightly and heeded, it may be a valuable stress reducer and guide to what we need to change or pay attention to so that our lives will run more smoothly. This is a benefit of feeling down. Additionally, since intuitive capacity, empathy, and interdependent perception are also right-brain functions, it follows that the premenstrual amd menstrual phases of our cycle are indeed times of enhanced wisdom.

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