Part Three: Make Allies Out of Housemates
I used to work in an office. Only managers had closed offices. The rest of us sat in open concept cubicles. One of my colleagues has these little flags she would put out on her desk. It was her way of communicating to us if her door was “open” or “closed”. A green flag meant she was available, a yellow one meant she was only available if necessary, and red meant she wasn’t – she was focused on something and under a deadline.
Admittedly, some folks rolled their eyes at this. However, I find the idea interesting. It helps to clearly, yet gently, communicate ones availability, in an environment without physical boundaries.
For something like this to work best, all parties need to agree to use it. If someone didn’t know about her and her flags, they would just walk right up to her desk with its red flag raised and get into her bubble. It pissed her off, and annoyed them if she pointed it out.
Knowing my menstrual phases helps me know many useful things:
- When it’s time to be social, and when it’s time to be alone.
- The best (and worst) moments to have a difficult conversation.
- Why I sometimes am ready to clean the house top to bottom, and other times just want to order take out every night and do NOTHING.
- When it’s best to ramp up my workout intensity, and when it’s best to stick to restorative yoga.
I happen to live with someone else. My husband doesn’t necessarily know when I’m on my period and when I’m not – unless I tell him.
He’s been a superstar learning about the different phases. But it’s not always effective (or kind) of me to tell him “I’m in my luteal phase, leave me alone” 😉
So we came up with a little flag system of our own!
Each card is colour coded for a quick glance, but also lists a few key points:
- Name of the phase
- How long it typically lasts
- The theme of the phase
- A list of Needs at this time
- A list of Noteworthy details
We’ve printed it out, cut into four flash cards, and pinned it up in our kitchen. As I track my cycles and know that I’m transitioning from one phase to the next, I flip to the relevant card. Now my husband knows where I’m at, and can support me. He may suggest a date night during ovulation, or offer to take our son for day so I get some time to myself during menstruation.
This works best for us because he’s committed to supporting me on my journey of reconnecting to my Feminine Wisdom. If you have someone at home who is willing to support you and your monthly rhythms, download these flashcards and give them a try!
May this serve you in building happy, healthy relationships with loving and supportive communication.
Let me know how it works! Leave a comment below and tell us how opening up communication around your natural rhythms is changing your relationships.