This month, I shared a weekend with a room full of women who represented each decade between the 30s and the 60s. I asked them to share what hormonal and major life changes they experienced in each of those decades and, when they did, not one chose to talk about hormones. Not one used the word “hormone.” Not one even talked about hot flashes. They each talked about crossroads in their lives, deaths and illnesses of themselves or loved ones, times that felt right, times that felt wrong, learning about the ideal pace for their bodies, learning how to implement this hard won knowledge, the challenge of slowing down their lives and beginning to live them the way they really want. While there were themes presented in each decade (a topic for another day), one overall message was that, while they came to the seminar to learn about hormones, that wasn’t as important to them as the context of their lives.
Listening to these women, I realized that, somewhere along the way, “women’s health” began to be defined as women’s hormones.
It isn’t. Not any more than the mirror is the problem when we don’t like what we see there.
Hormones do not act in a vacuum and govern us. They respond to the context of our lives. What we do and think, and who we are, govern them.
Our lives are made up of a bunch of days. How we live our days affects the course of our lives. This is why an optimal daily routine—called dinacharya in Ayurveda—is so important.