Join The Menstrual meets Mindful Productivity Challenge

Zainab Mirza
3 min readJan 24, 2022

Every month, millions of menstruating people experience a variety of symptoms brought about by shifting hormones that affect our moods, energy levels, and productivity. There is still little research done on the subject however, and a lot of productivity advice falls short of our needs because it simply doesn’t take the menstrual cycle into consideration.

(To learn more about what the four phases of the menstrual cycle are and how they affect us, click here.)

Illustration by Diahala Doucouré

What is the Menstrual Meets Mindful Productivity Challenge?
It’s a challenge designed to encourage people who menstruate to explore how the following elements may fluctuate throughout their menstrual cycle:

  • Mood and energy
  • Motivation and the ‘flow’ state
  • Perception and appreciation of ourselves

while also observing what types of activities may be more suitable for them in each phase. This would help people who menstruate understand the impact the menstrual cycle has on themselves and their productivity. Are we able to get more work done during the follicular phase? Do self-doubt and impostor syndrome tend to creep in more right before we get our period?

We hope that by the end of the cycle, we’ll be able to answer these questions and more, while getting an insight into what works best for our bodies and be more attuned to our needs.

The challenge would run from February 1 to April 1, 2022, and registration is open until February 28. It’s two months long to accommodate the length of one regular cycle, which can be anywhere between 28–35 days long. You can start the challenge on either:

  • February 1 regardless of what day of your cycle it is, or
  • The first day of your cycle after February 1

Who is this challenge for?
It’s for menstruating people who are curious to learn more about how their cycles affect their productivity.

I menstruate. Why should I join?
This challenge will help you foster more self-awareness about how you work by observing and documenting how your cycle impacts your productivity (if you don’t observe this already). Should you choose to, you can use your learnings and reflections to make positive changes in your work and the activities you enjoy to better tap into your productivity.

You’ll also be making these observations in a community, all of whom would be on a journey of self-discovery, exchanging experiences and reflections, while noting any patterns that may emerge.

Who’s behind the challenge?
Diahala Doucouré: Writer, freelance marketer, collage artist based in Germany. My struggles around hormonal acne triggered all my research and discoveries about menstrual cycles.

Zainab Mirza: Kuwait-based writer. I became aware of the four phases of the menstrual cycle at 29. Since then I’ve been unlearning things I’d been conditioned to believe about my body, while trying to understand it better.

Anything I need to do before I join?
You’ll need to fill in this form.

What would I need to do during the challenge?
We encourage you to track your energy and productivity levels every day or every phase/week. Since our symptoms change daily, it might be helpful to have a daily record you can look back on. Once you sign up, we’ll email you a template you can use (for your eyes only!), which would take about 4 minutes to fill in everyday.

You’ll also be invited to a virtual kickoff event on January 31 where we’ll share more information on menstrual cycles and suggestions on aligning certain kinds of activities like work engagements, movement, and socializing with different menstrual phases.

Anything else I need to know?
If you don’t already, we highly recommend tracking your cycle with a period tracker app! Some good ones are Flo, Eve, Clue etc.

I love the sound of this! Count me in. Where do I sign up?
Yay!💃🏾 You can register here.

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Zainab Mirza

Writer & Developmental Editor. Writing to understand the world, one word at a time.