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  • Writer's pictureLayla

Cycles of Creation

Updated: Jan 17

Recently, I was sharing some breathwork & healing guidance with someone experiencing depression who told me that she felt frustrated that she couldn't maintain a daily practice she was trying to incorporate. While I'm a huge fan of daily practice, this particular practice was a rather intense breath technique that I personally might do once or twice a month.

I explained that there's often wisdom in an impulse that says you no longer need something. And perhaps you'll return to that particular practice when you feel called. In fact, not only is it okay, it's totally natural! Some things are great to do every day, but the body requires changes to meet the needs of our fluctuating cycles.

So if you feel an impulse to discontinue a "positive habit," it's possible that it's from a lack of discipline, but it's also totally possible that your wise body is telling you "I don't need this today; there's a different 'medicine' that would serve me right now." That's wisdom! And it's often because we weren't taught how to honor our cycles of creation that we blow through that wisdom, override intuition, and/or force an agenda on the body that doesn't actually serve.

A common example is when someone with a feminine hormone cycle forces the body to maintain a strict workout regimen during the menstruation phase even if the body is asking for more rest, and perhaps a yin yoga class would serve far more. In forcing the workout on the body in this phase, the intensity has a huge tax on the adrenals. In fact, the decision causes the body to think that "we are in survival mode, so I must hold unto any excess fat to keep me safe, because it must not be safe here if you are ignoring my natural need for a slower pace and instead, forcing me through this kind of intensity." In this case, not only is the decision to do the high-intensity workout stressful in the moment, but it may detract from her long-term fitness goals too.

The truth of the matter is that the self-improvement industry is missing a huge component, which is that your body has cycles of creation, and honoring those natural rhythms of change is key for sustainable health, nervous system regulation, and creativity.

Our bodies have natural ebbs and flow in energy. Based on where the earth is in relation to the moon & the sun. I'll speak about three cycles today; the 24-hour, the 365-day, and the 28-day cycle. These cycles have an energetic impact on our levels of social energy, creativity, exercise needs, nutritional needs, and overall energy.

The easiest way to understand cycles is by first reflecting on the rise and fall of energy that you have in the 24-hour circadian cycle; the period of time it takes the earth to rotate once on its axis. Upon nightfall, there is an absence of light based on this axial rotation and it's normal to feel tired & go to sleep. Your circadian rhythm supports the things that you do every day such as sleep, eat, drink water, work, brush your teeth, etc. This is a masculine energy cycle; masculine energy is a type of energy that every human being has. The male hormone cycle is based on the 24-hour cycle clock.

It may come as no surprise that the modern workday is based on this 24-hour clock, and doesn't take into consideration the longer 28-day feminine hormone cycle, which I'll discuss later on.

Another cycle you're likely familiar with is the 365-day cycle. This is a longer cycle when the earth takes a rotation around the sun. This cycle is responsible for a change in the seasons. This also has an impact on our energy levels and affects our levels of inward/outward energy. For example, in the spring/summer, it's normal to have more vibrant outdoor energy, given the warmth of the weather and the natural inclination to go outside. During the fall/winter, it's normal to spend more time indoors, cozied up by a fire, reading, & staying warm inside.

This annual rhythm is a type of infradian rhythm; "infradian" meaning that it's a cycle that lasts longer than a day. Other infradian cycles in nature are hibernation periods and migration patterns.

The lunar infradian rhythm, in particular, is quite fascinating and in my opinion, deserves more attention! In every lunar cycle, the rotation of the moon around the earth appears as follows.

The moon is a subtle and powerful force. It controls the tides, influences farming (Rudolph Steiner was key in this research), and has been written about by many poets and artists. Naturally, the moon impacts our energy as well.

The moon's energy fluctuation is more subtle than the 24 or 365-day cycle, but powerful. The lunar cycle is a cycle of feminine energy; feminine energy being a type of energy that exists in all of us. For those with female anatomy, the biological hormone cycle lines up approximately with the moon, and some may even experience their cycle in sync with the phases of the moon. Read on cycle syncing with the moon here.)

Consider the following: the first quarter & full moon you may equate to spring and summer (more outward energy). The third quarter and new moon you may equate to fall and winter (more inward energy). This theory entertains that in our subtle energetic bodies, there is a miniature set of "seasons" that occur on a monthly basis. This may influence our food cravings, exercise habits, and inward/outward energy impulses. The arch of energy in the lunar cycle, which is longer than the 24-hour cycle and shorter than the 365-day cycle, plays a unique role that may only be distinguishable in your system if you bring awareness to it.

Tuning in with the energy of the moon is also a powerful tool in creative ventures. Setting goals at the new moon and seeing how they come to fruition at the full moon is an impactful technique to align a creative project with the feminine force of nature.

However, as this lunar cycle crosses with the solar cycles and other energetic forces, you may have bursts of energy come through you even during "inward periods." This is because energy levels are influenced by all sorts of factors. Seasonality and cycles are just one element. So many factors in life impact your energy! A new relationship may have you feeling energized. Or a new creative project. Or a spiritual force. The key is to remember that listening to your body's need for slow and subtle care is just as valuable as listening to when it needs action-packed or outward/social interaction. As you start to tune into your flow of energy, you'll learn that these two actually go hand-in-hand.

The best advice I can offer in terms of tuning into the balance of your masculine (linear) & feminine (cyclical) rhythms is to stay disciplined to certain practices daily and then allow creativity to come through you day-by-day over the course of the month, based on what feels intuitively inspired. You can expect and look forward to the subtle or noticeable daily variations you will feel in creativity, productivity, and need for rest! Harnessing the force of both your masculine & feminine energy is key to feeling balanced in your personal body as well as in your health, relationship & creative ventures.

Many of us have been taught that we must do the same thing every day or constantly be improving. This contradicts the natural fact that humans have ebbs and flows of energy in our natural cycles. And the energy of life — aka the energy of creation — requires these rhythms.

Just like a tree has periods where it blossoms, then lets go of its leaves, and then blossoms again, we too have ebbs and flows of creative energy.

Just like the moon has periods where it's visible and others where it's hidden, we too have a cycle of outward and inward energy.

I share these examples to debunk the programming that we should do/act/eat/exercise/work the same way every day. In fact, nature asks us to flow in tune with our natural cycles. We are a part of nature, and therefore, those cycles also exist within our own beings.

So whether you are at the gym, debating to stay in vs go out, feeling an impulse to hit the surf, deciding what to eat, or working on your laptop; consider the wisdom of your body. The body will tell you when you need to rest or be active. Rest allows your cells, muscles, and overall body to heal and reset. Then, when your body invites you back to action, you are naturally inclined to create & express yourself.

The body is wise. The more we can start listening to its requests to flow with nature — rather than force our way through an agenda created by the ego — the healthier our physical body and more peaceful our minds and hearts will be.

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