Hormones make you more powerful, more awesome, and more likely to succeed in the workplace.
By Tatiana Josephy (Co-Founder & CEO, MobileCurious)
I’m about to embark on a risky venture. My goal, in the next 3 minutes, is to completely change the way you think about your hormones.
The mass media story on your hormones – PMS (read: cattiness, weakness) is the main attraction, a central component of what makes you feminine.
The real scoop… Hormones make you more powerful, more awesome, and more likely to succeed in the workplace. It’s a lesson that changed my personal and professional life, and inspired the creation of Hormone Horoscope.
Which brings us to the list – AKA “the greatest hits of hormone research as they relate to your career.”
Quick aside – if you’re on the pill, items 4 and 5 will be most relevant to you, as hormonal birth control suppresses ovulation.
1.) You will be super human before ovulation.
Estrogen starts to rise on Day 1 (when your period starts), sky rockets around Day 5, and peaks immediately before ovulation.
Here’s what you need to know in a nutshell: Estrogen should be illegal it’s so good. Estrogen enhances feelings of well-being and confidence, turns up your energy and extroversion, and sharpens your memory and verbal skills.
Career consequence: You are unstoppable on the days leading up to ovulation. Ask for a promotion and a raise on Days 5 through 13 (assuming you ovulate on Day 14). You’ll exude confidence and make an irrefutable case for yourself. Entrepreneurial gal? This is an especially great time to start a major project and grow your network.
2.) The hours right around ovulation could be rocky.
At ovulation, estrogen crashes dramatically. This kicks off a little-known window of intense PMS-like symptoms.
3.) You’re super human again after ovulation, just in a totally different way.
Progesterone starts to rise almost immediately after ovulation, peaking around Day 23. Estrogen returns too (fist pump!) but to a much lesser extent. Progesterone is a calming, laid-back kind of hormone. You’ll feel more introverted and reflective, and you’ll rock more solitary activities like writing and creating.
Career consequence: When the office blows up over a PR nightmare, your calm demeanor sets you apart. During this phase, write a blog post, prepare a presentation, and think through long-term strategy.
4.) Self-care should include hormonal self-care.
We know that healthy food, 8 hours of sleep, and exercise are good for us and our careers. Taking care of our hormonal selves is just as important. Not surprisingly, eating well, sleeping, and exercising are also at the top of the list. There are a few extra hormone-specific tips to keep in mind. Caffeine can seriously aggravate PMS. It’s an annoying Catch-22… just as you need more caffeine to keep you alert, it’s the worst time for you to have it. Studies also show that Calcium, Magnesium, Vitamin B and Vitamin E can minimize the effects of post-ovulation and pre-period hormone crashes.
Career consequence: If you’re usually a 2-shot espresso girl, swap that for 1-shot in the days leading up to your period, and sip away at your desk smiling – your PMS is going to be way easier. And don’t forget your daily multi-vitamin! It could make a noticeable difference for your work day.
5.) Honestly, your whole office is hormonal.
Men’s testosterone levels are highest in the morning and drop throughout the day, so afternoons are often a low-energy, irritable (dare I say PMS-y?) time for men.
Career consequence: Be aware of what makes your colleagues tick. For both the men and women you work with, it will be easier to collaborate at certain times than others. Hormones are an important, amazing piece of the puzzle.
This post was originally posted at Minted Magazine.
About the guest blogger: Tatiana Josephy is Co-Founder and CEO of MobileCurious, an app development company that launched Hormone Horoscope and TrueCycle. Born and raised in Canada, Tatiana graduated from Princeton with a focus on public health. Before MobileCurious, Tatiana ran marketing and UX for Donors Choose in NY and new product development for CrowdFlower in SF. She lives for technology, women’s health and negotiating (everything). Follow her on Twitter at @tatianajosephy.