18 Mar Mindfulness Tips For Coping With PMS!
PMS or Pre-Menstrual Syndrome affects every woman just before their periods hit! This can make their life very stressful so it’s important to keep these mindfulness facts or tips in hand, to combat tension and get over your cycle with ease.
There are many symptoms of PMS. These range from bloating, body pain(cramps), slight irritability, to anxiety and sometimes serious depression. Sometimes the feelings can be so random and intense too! I remember bursting into tears for absolutely no reason! Another time I cried in my friend’s house for hours just because I was so uncomfortable. In other words, it can make us feel vulnerable, lacking emotional control, making it hard to focus on work and hard to stay away from snapping at people.
Even if the nature of PMS is quite complex these simple mindfulness techniques are going to help you out:
Keep a track of your cycle by penning your symptoms down. I did this for 2 months and it gave me a lot of insight about my cycle’s pattern. This way I was mentally prepared to let my body do its thing and if I found out that my mood got bad as a result of the cycle, I could mindfully keep an eye on the negative thoughts and actions.I also understood that the root cause of that negativity had originated from a physical cause which helped me go easier on myself and I was able to practice self-care more. Having a diary to track my cycle also helped me to deal with better awareness as I wasn’t taken aback by surprise so much.
Become Mindful of What You Eat:
Comfort eating leading up to, and during periods is very common. Cravings usually consist of foods with high salt, carbohydrate, fat and sugar content. Eating too much of this can make us feel very guilty and that can lead to low self-esteem. Being mindful as we enjoy these comfort foods in moderation can curb feeling bloated and depressed. TIP: A good way to practice mindfulness is to slow down the eating process and savor each taste, smell and look! The benefit of doing this is that slowly consuming satisfies the craving without eating more.
Become A Mindful Communicator:
Mindfulness can help to communicate positively with our friends at and outside of work and loved ones. Physical discomfort can become challenging, so make sure to communicate better by being mindful of how we are feeling by staying neutral to avoid arguments. For example, I would get really snappy at my best friend during PMS, and this led to a lot of negativity and strain on our relationship. So I when I told him that I would practice meditation during these times and try to stay as mindful as possible during my mood swings, he was really happy about that. If I hadn’t done that I would have hurt his feelings for no reason and now we remain besties! Also, I do give him a heads up when I’m having a really bad day so that he’s aware that I need some time to cool down once the cramps release or my mood improves. This is very helpful and if I realize that I said something I didn’t mean, I always make it a point to explain how I’m feelings and accept that I was wrong and apologize. This way I’m not hiding my feelings or denying them, instead, I am mindfully communicating as I both, deal with my feelings and my interaction with people around me.
This is a blessing in disguise. Having some quality time spent doing the things that make your body happy is very important during and before your periods. I love to rest with a hot water bag on my tummy as often as I can, or treat myself to a comfortable bath, sometimes I would even watch an old favorite movie. Self-care is especially needed when we feel tired, unwell or vulnerable or too emotional. By cultivating this habit of giving yourself maximum breaks and love( in any form), you can activate the care and attention you need to deal with the symptom’s of PMS as they begin to pop up, instead of suppressing your needs. Suppression of your needs can cause a lot of stress and mental drain. So indulge in self-compassion to create a lighter and more spacious mindset during this time. TIP: Act with self-kindness, listen to your body and take action based on those needs.
Nehita is a mindfulness expert who writes extensively on lifestyle management, wellness and ways to lead a healthier and a happier life. She is a part of Aware’s expert team on meditation. She is also an avid artist who spends most her time dribbling amazing stories through art.