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Mindfulness and menstruation.

Kate Penning (3.5min read time).

Mindfulness, the practice of being fully present in the moment without judgment, can be a powerful tool to help individuals navigate their menstrual cycles with grace and ease. In this blog, we'll explore the connection between mindfulness and menstruation, and how embracing mindfulness can transform your experience.

We’ll also look at how we integrate mindfulness into our App, Howami.

As we move through our monthly cycle, each day can bring us something to wonder at, something to notice about ourselves, and something to work with. This isn't just a focus on managing pain and discomfort but also a focus on celebrating the days of boundless energy; the clear skin days; the days when we might need to listen closely to our dreams, and the days when our inner critic might be talking to us in the loudest voice.

The menstrual cycle is more than something to just become aware of once or twice a month at bleed and ovulation, the daily effects of it on our physical and emotional bodies, when viewed mindfully, can be a tool into a practice of self discovery, self validation and enhanced emotional intelligence.

Encouraging mindfulness is the key underpinning of the howami app and the 7 attitudes of mindfulness are discreetly interwoven into the howami user journey.

We invite the user into a non-judgemental space to witness their own experience encouraging beginners' mind to return each day with open and curious engagement

Our aim is that the user builds the ability to develop a basic trust with themselves and their experiences and we will deliver relevant content to give more clarity and understanding including mindful exercises in relation to their findings.

We don’t ask that anyone strives towards a goal of discovering patterns within their cycle, more that through nurturing a daily practice of gentle mindful noticing they will deepen the awareness of themselves and the nuances of their cycle.

Patience is cultivated as the user is invited to journey inwards to locate within the body all that they are experiencing each day. This will be made enjoyable and fun using play thinking, reduced language and an interactive interface connected with an avatar.

Letting go: putting down the things that are not needed or “cutting back to the good wood” as we like to phrase it, will come about naturally, encouraged by our tailored content.

The app directs the user to connect to their body and inner-world through offering the choice of a 30 second/1 minute or 3 minute breath meditation at the start, then, later, before moving into logging their physical and emotional health, the app directs the user into a simple body scan. The user is then encouraged to embody their experience through the clever use of touch screen and visuals.

Mindfulness can help to manage symptoms by fostering a deeper connection with the body and emotions. The following are a few ways in which this can happen:

1. **Pain Management:** Mindfulness meditation techniques, such as deep breathing and body scanning, can help alleviate menstrual cramps and reduce pain perception.

2. **Emotional Balance:** Menstruation often brings mood swings and emotional ups and downs. Mindfulness allows closer observation of these emotions without judgment, fostering emotional resilience and self-compassion.

3. **Reducing Stress:** Stress can exacerbate menstrual symptoms. Mindfulness practices, such as meditation and mindful yoga, can lower stress levels and promote relaxation.

4. **Improved Body Awareness:** Mindfulness encourages listening to your body's signals. This heightened awareness can help better understand the menstrual cycle and its variations.

By incorporating mindfulness into the menstrual journey, there will be a deeper awareness and connection to the body, not only will this reduce physical and emotional discomfort, but it will give the ability to live life more deeply intune with the natural rise and fall of the hormonal monthly journey thus bringing about enhanced emotional intelligence and better life flourishing.

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