Episode #41: Leverage Your Hormone Cycle as a Woman to Live Your Fullest Life with Shay Frago

Written by: Karenna Soto
The Fully Expressed Podcast
The Fully Expressed Podcast
Episode #41: Leverage Your Hormone Cycle as a Woman to Live Your Fullest Life with Shay Frago
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Ever wondered how optimizing your hormone health can transform your life? In this insightful episode of “Fully Expressed,” I sit down with Shay Frago, a holistic hormone and life coach, to explore the powerful connection between hormone health and overall well-being. Shay shares her personal journey of overcoming significant hormonal imbalances and how it led her to become an expert in women’s health. Together, we dive into practical strategies for harnessing the power of your hormonal cycle to live a more vibrant and balanced life.

Shay explains the importance of understanding and listening to our bodies, particularly how the menstrual cycle influences different aspects of our health. She provides tips on how to leverage the four phases of the menstrual cycle for increased productivity and well-being. Shay’s journey from a life-threatening diagnosis to holistic healing underscores the profound impact of hormonal health on our physical, emotional, and mental states.

You can read the full podcast transcript for this episode below:

0:00
Welcome to the fully expressed podcast with Karenna.
0:02
I am your podcast host, Karenna Soto.
0:04
And this is the show where we have conversations that invite you into living your life, fully expressed, fully stepping into your most authentic self in relationship and bringing your fullest expressed self to business and career.
0:17
So wherever you are professionally, as you can probably hear, I am so sick today.
0:24
And so I apologize if you’re listening to this and you’re like, wow, your voice is so flat because that is what I sound like and I can’t change it because I am completely congested.
0:34
But I wanted to make sure I got to record this episode with one of my dearest friends.
0:39
She is someone that I met through the coaching world.
0:42
And I want to say, oh my gosh, like four years ago, 2019 or yeah, 2019, 2020 just around there.
0:51
We were in a coaching pro program called Minor Power by Sophie Kish.
0:56
So if anyone has heard of Sophie Kish on Instagram, we were in one of her groups together.
1:00
And yeah, ever since I met, her name is Shay Frago.
1:04
And in meeting Shay, I met her in the group program and I was like, oh, we’re going to be friends.
1:11
So we just stayed friends.
1:12
And what I love about my relationship with Shay is like, one is that we have made an effort to like, stay in touch, but also see each other in person, which is really, really special because we met online.
1:21
And this is another opportunity where like meeting friends online is an actual thing and then meeting in person and it’s safe and trusting and through her.
1:30
I have also met other amazing people that she’s introduced me to.
1:34
So she is here with me and I’m going to pass the baton and the mic over to her to let her introduce herself.
1:40
I said no, thank you for having me and for that sweet intro.
1:44
And I feel exactly the same like online bestie turned in real life and it’s just been so so awesome to like go through the years and our entrepreneurial journey and all the things so, so grateful for our friendship.
1:56
But yeah, so I consider myself a holistic hormone and life coach.
2:01
I’m super excited to dive into all things women’s health today.
2:05
I also have an N LP Practitioner certification and I feel like N LP in the subconscious mindset in her child somatic work is all also something I’m super passionate about.
2:17
So I blend the two.
2:18
I really love bridging the woo woo with the science to make it a little more tangible for everyone across the board.
2:24
I do primarily work with women but have worked with a handful of men and just love to see people live in their fullest and highest potential in life and reaching it in a way that feels fulfilling and peaceful and not like you’re gonna reach burnout, which I know you’re an expert in.
2:43
Yes.
2:44
Thank you so much for being here.
2:45
And I think that’s where like I love about you.
2:47
She is that you bring, you know, the bridge, right?
2:49
Because I think in this world you can so often get into like this is the answer or like this is the only way or this is the only niche like subconscious minds at work, inner child work is work.
2:59
We get all my healing and then you’re like, oh, but there’s all this hormone work that you could be doing too, which I thought would be so special to bring you on to the podcast because like as you said, we were talking about women’s health.
3:08
And lately on the podcast, we’ve been talking so much about how to honor your capacity.
3:14
What does it look like to optimize your capacity and this from the tactics and the strategies that I’ve shared on the podcast recently have been so helpful.
3:23
But I really wanted to hyper focus on how we can start to step into our fullest expressed self and optimize and leverage our capacity based on our hormonal cycle, which I know you are an absolute expert in.
3:37
I have looked to you before for hormone guides and all the things that you’ve been doing.
3:42
So I was like, OK, we got to bring Shrey onto the podcast to talk about this specific topic as much as I get to practices in my day to day.
3:49
I really wanted you to be here because I feel like you bring the expertise to this topic.
3:55
So yeah, my question to you would be just to kick things off, would love to learn a little bit about your hormone journey because you have a very, very special journey if you’re open to sharing about that.
4:06
Because I think telling them where you’re at, I think gives them such a where you were at to where you are now gives them such a beautiful example of what is possible.
4:17
Yeah, absolutely.
4:18
I know my hormone journey is kind of like two fold is always how I’d see is the hormone and women’s health aspect really started in two different ways.
4:27
One was my own journey with HPV.
4:31
I was diagnosed at like 21 or 22.
4:34
So I was still, I think it was like my last year of college or something like that.
4:38
And I was diagnosed and I remember the doctor saying it’s like very point blank, she’s kind of cold.
4:45
And I was in a major shame spiral.
4:48
You probably couldn’t see it from the external but internal.
4:51
I was just like, oh, my God, how did this happen?
4:53
Like, I’ve only been with, like, one person because it’s considered a sexually transmitted.
4:59
I think it’s infection or, yeah, I think it’s an infection or disease but it is considered transmitted through, you know, having sexual relations with the partner.
5:07
And it’s like, oh, did I like, was I irresponsible, was person and was he irresponsible?
5:13
Like, it brought up so many different questions and I just felt a lot of shame and she’s like, oh, it’s super common in like your age category, literally, like everyone in your age group pretty much has it.
5:25
It’s not really a big deal and it’ll heal itself.
5:29
And then that’s all she said to me.
5:30
And I was like, oh, ok.
5:31
And at that time I had no sense of my voice or like asking questions or taking up space or anything like that.
5:38
So I just kind of brushed it off even though internally I was like that.
5:43
Right.
5:43
It was really eating me up and I ignored it.
5:46
I chose to ignore it.
5:47
I didn’t do anything about it and kind of went about my life and every single year I had to get a smear because of the diagnosis and this wasn’t going away.
5:56
It was actually just progressing, progressing, progressing.
5:59
And I think it was like year number four or five, the doctors like you are at high risk for cervical cancer because this HPV is just like, constantly transmuting into different cells.
6:10
Like we’d like to do a biopsy and, and like, check things.
6:13
So I had a couple of from biopsies where they removed a piece of my service, which is honestly a little bit traumatic also at the doctor’s office and then I just like, was so disconnected from my body and my cycle.
6:24
So those biopsies did come back with pre-cancerous cells.
6:28
So they’re like, we want to continue monitoring you and they did.
6:32
So I was going like every six months.
6:34
But it eventually got to a point where they’re like, I would rather remove your cervix and give you a partial hysterectomy, then continue on because your body is clearly like, not healing it.
6:46
And I was like, do I not have any other options?
6:48
Because if they removed my service, then I could to term.
6:52
And at that point in time, I was only 27 I was going through like therapy for the first like few years and unearthing a lot of family trauma that I was moving through.
7:02
It was going through like a major relationship breakup after like six years of being together, I had like no sense of self was very, very disconnected.
7:11
All of all of the things felt piled on at once.
7:13
And I was like, I need some time to think about this.
7:17
Like, I don’t know that I wanna do this major surgery and ultimately, my intuition was like, no, there’s, there’s, this is not how your story goes.
7:25
And there is definitely another way for you you just need to find in, have the courage to like, look and seek answers somewhere else and like, really use that internal compass and like my own voice of being like, ok, like, where can I find different avenues?
7:39
And that’s how I came into the holistic world.
7:43
I remember finding a woman.
7:44
I don’t even know how I found her.
7:46
And like, it was like a gift from the universe, I guess.
7:48
And she primarily taught people how to heal the cervix and work with the cervix.
7:55
And because she had an HPV diagnosis very similar and completely healed it and then never came back.
8:00
And so I followed her protocol and a lot of it was like herbal medicine, internal work, connecting to like my womb space and my hormones and all of that led down to like a hormone rabbit hole which led to like, ok, I had a missing period for like two years.
8:19
I decided to come off birth control, it came back and then I was bleeding twice a month and it was like, ok, that’s not normal either, had a lot of different hormonal imbalances.
8:28
And then finally over like being consistent and studying and learning my body and connecting to my body in this way, plus healing some deep wounds, both emotionally and mentally.
8:39
I slowly completely just like made a full 180 in my life.
8:43
Like I feel like I developed and created a completely brand new life, became a completely new person.
8:47
A lot of relationship shed.
8:49
And I felt like a little lonely at times.
8:53
But eventually, like my path really took form.
8:55
I decided to go back to school, study, women’s health became really passionate about like integrative medicine.
9:03
I’m going to be starting like naturopathic school.
9:04
Now I have a very healthy thriving cycle.
9:07
My HPV is gone and yeah, like I, I feel like I never have P MS and now I’m obsessed with teaching it to other people and just love and think the woman’s body is just so crazy special.
9:19
The more and more I learn about it.
9:20
And I’ve been doing this work for like three or four years now.
9:24
Pretty great.
9:25
And yeah, I have a deep, deep passion for it because of my journey and see what it does for me.
9:29
But I also know what it does for like my clients and the people in my life.
9:33
Wow.
9:34
I mean, did you guys just hear that?
9:36
Like what like being able to completely heal your HPV and also have prec cancerous cells and now your body is fully thriving.
9:44
Is that fair?
9:45
Yeah.
9:45
Yeah.
9:46
Wow.
9:47
I mean, stories like that, I just feel like we need to share more of, especially because I think there’s, I mean, we’ve talked about this before but like in the medical space in western medicine, there’s just so much fear around, like, and they only see one thing but there’s just like, so much fear around these things and like, you really started to, you dove deeper and it sounds like you started to learn to advocate for yourself and wanted to, wanted to experience.
10:09
So I was like, ok, there has to be another way and you listen to that little voice of like, oh, there is another way and look where it’s led you now.
10:16
Yeah, I know because I’m like, what if I had not listened to my intuition and moved forward with that surgery?
10:22
Like, life could look very different.
10:24
And especially now I’m like, I know I wanna have kids even then I didn’t.
10:27
But now I do and I’m like, it would have been so sad if I reached this point in my life and then been like, well, I can’t carry my own kid.
10:34
And I think it’s really unfortunate that most Western medicine doesn’t give you a lot of options.
10:39
It’s either some sort of pill or pharmaceutical or some sort of surgery that alters things, which sometimes that is the only option.
10:46
But I feel most of the time there’s usually something else if you’re willing to kind of look for that third door.
10:52
Totally.
10:53
I mean, Nick and I were actually talking about this in a separate situation, like, you know, sometimes doctors will recommend like getting your pancreas removed your gallbladder removed and like just the side effects that come from just removing them.
11:05
I mean, in your situation, like potentially moving your, removing your cervix.
11:09
Yes, you will be able to have kids.
11:10
But I wonder what that would have done to your hormones in your system overall.
11:14
Not just the fact of not being able to have kids.
11:16
Yes.
11:16
I, I believe that would be so sad if that choice got taken away.
11:19
But hormones can you talk to?
11:21
Like, what, why are hormones so important?
11:24
Like, why is it someone something that someone should focus in on, like, just the importance of hormone health?
11:30
Like when I think back to just who I was even 10 years ago, that was the last thing I was thinking about hormone.
11:36
Although I was like, what do you mean?
11:38
Like, no, I was thinking about calories in calories out, working out, you know, being vegan vegetarian.
11:45
I had no idea why I was doing all these things.
11:47
So, I’d love to know what’s your opinion on why hormones are so important and why you see them as such a gift to the woman’s body?
11:54
Yeah.
11:54
I mean, unfortunately, I feel in our society a lot of women are done a disservice of being told, like you can just skip your period or not happen, what, not at like a very young age, like when you maybe start exploring going on birth control and whatnot.
12:10
And that’s just simply not true.
12:14
And there is more research I feel readily available.
12:17
Now for people that want to explore that rabbit hole, the long term effects of birth control, what it does to our cognitive health, what it does to our overall health.
12:26
And I think something we just were never taught and is not talked about enough in the female body is the fact that our menstrual cycle is actually a fit vital sign.
12:37
And what I mean by that, if you’re not familiar with, what a vital sign is is when you go to the doctors, how they check your weight, they check your height, your blood pressure, all that good stuff is the same thing with your menstrual cycle.
12:47
That’s why one of the last questions they ask you is like, when’s the last time you had a period and to make sure that properly.
12:54
And I think something that is also not educated for a lot of women is that the menstrual cycle has, it is important for reproductive health person if you want to have babies.
13:03
But even if you never want to have a child, it is so important because it governs five key systems in our health.
13:10
So if you’re not taking care of your menstrual cycle, you’re not ovulating regularly.
13:14
You do have hormonal imbalances or experiencing some consistent symptoms, month to month.
13:19
It’s hurting your other, other system.
13:23
So you have your immune response that’s super important for your overall health immunity, boosting, making sure that your body can warrant off illnesses or things that come into your space and we’re exposed to things all the time.
13:35
So you want to make sure that your immune system is functioning properly.
13:38
If your menstrual cycle isn’t, then you’re going to have a weaker immune system, you’re more prone to sickness, maybe autoimmune diseases.
13:44
I think the crazy statistics, it’s like 70 or 75% of women account for most autoimmune conditions.
13:50
And a lot of that I do think is showing comes to hormone health because you, it affects your thigh and bla like all the things and when you start digging deeper, it’s so, so much more than just having a period or like having Children.
14:04
And there’s your brain health, your, your metabolism, your digestion, all of that is affected through your menstrual cycle.
14:11
And I think the common misconception is that you don’t want to have babies, then your menstrual cycle doesn’t matter.
14:17
Or my menstrual cycle doesn’t really matter because it’s just like normal to have the P MS systems.
14:22
Like those are things that I hear all the time.
14:23
But I think what most women sadly do not realize and it’s no fault of your own is that it’s actually super, super important for your entire ecosystem and the female body.
14:35
I’m so glad you share all of that because I had no idea.
14:38
Let’s talk it like 10 years ago, Karenna.
14:40
Like what?
14:41
No, what do you mean I’m just strong and I eat well and I get some sunshine.
14:45
That’s about it.
14:47
There’s just so much to it and I’m so curious just based off that before we get into how you can actually leverage your hormones in your cycle to live and thrive.
14:56
You mentioned about how they’re all connected, right?
14:58
So that it’s connected to your brain health.
15:00
It’s connected to your gut health, it’s connected to your metabolism, which metabolism is just so important.
15:04
All these things do if one of those things are off, do they impact your hormones or is it vice versa?
15:10
If your hormones are, let’s say not do well, does it impact it revers, does that make sense?
15:15
What I’m asking?
15:15
So like that, is it one or the other or are they constantly in tangent with each other?
15:20
How does that work?
15:21
Let’s say it’s more in tangent with each other?
15:24
I think it’s like a domino effect.
15:26
And I would say the starting domino for females is usually your hormonal health.
15:31
But that domino starts to cascade.
15:33
Then it it affects it all.
15:35
But like when you’re sick, for example, you might delay ovulation because your body doesn’t feel safe.
15:41
Or when you travel and your nervous system regulation is like a little bit frazzled, it might delay ovulation.
15:47
So it affects your emotions.
15:49
Your body needs to feel safe to ovulate and unless you’re ovulating, you’re not gonna have a period.
15:53
So depending on, like, external factors or stress and stuff like that.
15:57
It can impact that window or your period window, for example.
16:01
And you can have, like, delayed periods or things like that.
16:03
And that’s how people can experience that aside from the hormones or the opposite where it’s like, ok, there’s something up with the hormones and then it’s gonna impact the other.
16:11
So that’s kind of how I’ve always used the analogy.
16:14
It’s like that, that domino effect.
16:16
Yeah.
16:16
I think that’s just helpful to break down because it’s like, well, where do you start?
16:19
And I really think that, you know, just recognizing your symptoms.
16:22
So I’m curious, can you talk a little bit to what are some, some of the common P MS symptoms that people consider normal?
16:29
I think this is like, that’s like the little tangent and there’s so like, not just all P MS symptoms, but like, which ones do people think?
16:35
Like, these are completely normal?
16:37
These are a part of my day but they’re not normal and they’re not, they’re kind of signs of something’s off.
16:42
So I would say the top three symptoms that I hear people experiencing that have been majorly normalized is bloating and the closer you get to your period, the more bloated and gross you feel.
16:55
And I feel like that’s been super normalized almost to the point where women are like, oh my gosh, I feel so bloated or I get so bloated that I feel like I can’t like fit in my clothes and they like make this whole self deprecation thing of it.
17:08
And bloating is immediate actual physical sign that your body is not happy.
17:15
And as I said earlier, like the menstrual cycle does affect your, your gut, your digestion, your metabolism.
17:20
So that’s also saying that if your gut microbiome isn’t super happy and so much starts from the gut as well.
17:26
So, bloating, I’d say the second one is having normalized cramping and having such extreme pain to the point that you want to be in fetal position or it makes you want to vomit and I’ve definitely been there but normalizing that I feel has become all too common.
17:41
And then I would say the other one is just fatigue, like being exhausted all the time and people being like, oh yeah, I’m just like so tired and the closer I get to my period, I get like even more tired and that that’s just normal that your body is not meant to have energy.
17:58
And that’s just not true at all.
18:00
And I think there are three things that really affect people in the day to day and really affect people the closer you get to year period.
18:08
And I think that’s why a lot of women wish they didn’t have it sometimes or really hate that time of the cycle.
18:14
And it’s so unfortunate because there is another way and it could feel genuinely euphoric.
18:20
It could might sound crazy to some of you, but it could even feel like fun and you look forward to having it.
18:26
Yeah.
18:26
Wow.
18:26
I love that.
18:28
I think this is such a perfect transition into leveraging your cycle.
18:32
So personally, when I started my hormone healing journey, actually listening to my body when it was exhausted was the most healing thing I could do, right?
18:40
So like right before I got my period or my bleed or my mood, whatever you call this beautiful moment that we have every single month, I would actually start to listen because I wasn’t listening before where I would push through when my body needed to slow down.
18:58
And like what I realized and let’s talk, maybe we could talk about the four cycles.
19:01
But what I’ve realized is like, yeah, I was exhausted like the week before my period and now that I’ve gone to a place of like, really starting to optimize my hormones and feeling more regulate my hormones, I’m not as exhausted anymore.
19:14
Like there is the day of where I’m like, oh, this is my lowest energy and I’m pretty tired, but I’m not like, ironically fatigued, right?
19:21
And I still think I have some room to get better with that.
19:25
But I feel like to what you’re talking about, like there was this time that I had to start to listen to my cycles.
19:31
So maybe you can talk about the four different phases and how we can start to listen to our bodies of just starting from there within the different phases.
19:42
Yeah.
19:42
So I, some people might have already heard this, but I’ve always taught it with the analogy of the seasons.
19:48
So I call it like seasons of the cycle is how I teach it.
19:52
And we always start with day one of your cycle, which is menstruation, which I didn’t even know that when I started learning this stuff, I always thought like day one was when you were done bleeding.
20:01
But day one is the day you start bleeding.
20:03
So that’s menstruation can last anywhere between 3 to 5, sometimes seven days for that person.
20:09
That’s what we call your inner winter.
20:11
It is your lowest energetic standpoint.
20:14
So it is normal to feel a little more inward.
20:16
But if you think of earth and when we go through winter season, nature kind of dies off, things slow down, you’re inside more same thing.
20:24
That’s what’s happening internally with your hormones.
20:27
To your natural, external energetic output is going to be very similar to that.
20:31
I’ve taught my clients and I like talk about the archetypes of the cycle.
20:35
I always call this kind of the mystic because you’re super intuitive, attuned to like the world around you.
20:44
And it’s kind of just like a magical time on the cycle when you really know how to work with it.
20:48
And you can tap into that energy and that shift.
20:51
And I’ve always had this obsession with the brain.
20:53
And so what’s cool about this time of the cycle and why I call it the mystic is that your right and left brain hemispheres communicate with each other in a totally different way.
21:01
So you are naturally more logical and creative at the same time.
21:05
And I just think that’s such a superpower when you can work with it.
21:08
And then from there you move into follicular phase and that can be equated to your inner spring.
21:15
And very much like we experience in earth, we are in spring about to move into summer where it’s like nature starts to bloom again, the weather starts to get warmer.
21:23
You’re starting to be more social and go outside, more like play outside more.
21:27
You’re feeling like this new reinvigorated energy like, oh like I’m ready to plan things and do things and so excited for summer.
21:34
So that is your external energy starting to express itself during this phase where you have this estrogen shift and you’re just suddenly like, oh my gosh, like I’m ready to take on the world again and come out of my cocoon and birth new projects or have new exciting experiences in life.
21:49
And so that’s what’s happening there and then what’s cool about the brain during this part of the cycle, I call the archetype of the creat TRX because you’re actually more easily able to form new neural pathways.
22:02
So if you’re wanting to install a new habit, maybe try a new exercise routine or whatever it is, that’s new.
22:08
Your brain will actually be supportive because of this time of the cycle to form those neurological pathways and create that habit a little more easily.
22:16
So another like hack you use with your cycle and I think it’s super cool.
22:20
And then from there you move into ovulation, which is your inner summer.
22:26
Then if you think of summer time and or moving into summertime here in like the northern hemisphere, right?
22:32
So you have probably a lot of social activities, you’re outside more, the sun is shining.
22:37
So you just want to be outside more.
22:39
You feel vibrant, this thirst for life, everything has now balloons, some farms start to like produce new, new stuff, right?
22:47
So it’s the same thing with your external energy and how you can work with your hormones during this phase.
22:52
You’re the most social, great time to do all of those things.
22:56
I all this archetype of the central news where you just get to tap into your senses and like the world around you and, and really living through that vibrancy and vitality of life.
23:06
And then you move into luteal phase, which is the most misunderstood time of the cycle, I think and call that your inner fall, but much like our earth fall season where things start to slow down.
23:18
Nature is kind of starting dy, dying off waning.
23:21
The sun is not out as long.
23:23
So you’re wanting to stay inside a little more.
23:25
So you just naturally start to slow down.
23:27
Same thing with your external energy because of your hormones.
23:30
You’re gonna want to slow down.
23:31
That’s totally normal.
23:32
One day you might want to be social the other day.
23:34
Maybe it’s like dark and gloomy.
23:35
So you’re not.
23:36
And the same thing with your hormones, you kind of just like move with the energy or get to be a little more patient with yourself with your brain.
23:42
It’s when the hormones are starting to decline.
23:45
So you become a little more critical and analytical.
23:48
You’re a little more aware of what’s not working or maybe what is working and you’re just a little more fixated on that.
23:55
So you can nest a little and just become more attuned to those aspects of your life.
23:59
I call this the queen because I think the clean energy in the archetype is just someone who no matter what life brings really knows how to hold herself.
24:09
And that’s something that I think women get to cultivate when you learn this energy of phase and you’re starting off is just like, how can you really hold yourself during this time of the cycle and adjust as needed day to day and work with the waves of what’s coming for you.
24:24
And I think we operate in a world that’s kind of the same every day, but women are not the same every day.
24:29
We are literally different day to day.
24:31
And our brain changes literally from the first half to last half of your cycle.
24:34
So if you think of the brain changing, you’re not even the same person.
24:37
And so give yourself that permission slip to do that, then we start all over again, back into menstruation.
24:43
Wow, that was like so much juice like there is so much that you said there.
24:49
And I’m just like, OK, so in your opinion, how can someone start to really leverage this, like, take advantage of this structure, this beautiful gift that we have biologically built into our bodies and use it as a way to a give us the most fulfilling life one.
25:08
But to really step into our fullest expressed self.
25:12
Like how can someone start to really leverage all these different archetypes every single month, in your opinion?
25:17
Yeah.
25:18
So the way I like to teach it is one thing at a time every month and then you add on because there’s four distinct phases.
25:25
But you really need to get comfortable building a relationship with one.
25:29
I say either choose luteal phase or menstruation first because I feel like they’re usually the two that most women feel disconnected from.
25:38
And especially like if you’re on birth control, specifically the pill, you might not experience this the same, but you can still work with the energy by like the days and do it like every week based off of where you are on the pill.
25:49
But then if you’re off of it, you’ll definitely be experiencing this and probably, like, resonate with a lot of what I said.
25:55
So pick one, if luteal phase is the phase that you hate the most, then maybe that’s it.
25:59
Or if your period is the one that you dislike the most, maybe you start there.
26:03
So the one that you like the least develop an intimate relationship with and focus on that for 30 days.
26:09
So both with menstruation and lal phase, it’s all about slowing down.
26:13
And I feel like in our modern day society, we are just not comfortable slowing down.
26:17
We’re not very comfortable with rest.
26:19
It’s still, I think has some stigma around it of like, oh it makes you unproductive and weak and not successful and it’s not gonna get you to your goals and then layer on other beliefs as women in society that can weigh very heavy.
26:33
So I really invite you to play with the energy of what would it feel like to slow down?
26:38
What would it feel like to allow your body rest?
26:40
What would it feel like to allow your brain to rest?
26:42
What would it feel like to maybe produce a little less?
26:45
And it sounds so counterintuitive but know that like going slower actually makes you faster and just play in that energy and keep it super, super simple and then do that for like 30 days and even when you move into follicular and ovulation phase.
26:59
Can you still take it a little bit slower and like stop and smell the roses a little more even though you have the energy and what would it be like to live that way?
27:08
And then in month two layer on from that, maybe you focus on ovulation or follicular.
27:14
After that, it is a more creative time of the cycle.
27:18
It’s your most social.
27:19
You do feel the most confident.
27:21
So maybe you practice like using your voice.
27:24
I really love to challenge my clients of like, where are you suppressing your voice in?
27:30
Like what area of your life?
27:31
Your hormones are naturally going to help you feel a little more magnetic and confident in having tougher conversations or playing in the energy of expressing yourself in a different way and you’re gonna be able to handle whatever fear that’s coming at you a little easier in your nervous system during this time.
27:48
So I say like, go for it.
27:50
Like maybe there’s a conversation you’ve been wanting to have with a friend or a significant other or a family member.
27:55
Like go for it.
27:56
What would it feel like to have the courage and confidence to just like step into that version of yourself?
28:01
Who’s got you and all is going to be good?
28:04
And and what is it like to like use your voice bully during this time?
28:08
So I would say those are two simple ways and then you keep you keep adding on from there.
28:14
But I think those two are like really strong starting points that are just like opens the door to so much more.
28:19
Thank you for that.
28:21
And how does some like, how does doing this start to heal our hormones or like really connect us to our bodies?
28:29
Like what’s the the actual mind body connection that’s happening there?
28:33
I feel like when you move from phase to phase and you start paying attention to the energy shifts, it’s so subtle but also very obvious at the same time.
28:43
So depending on where you are in your cycle, like if you’re bleeding, notice that moment that suddenly you feel like on it, that’s what it reminds me of is like you feel shut down for a bit and then you have this moment from when you’re bleeding into follicular phase where you’re like, oh, I suddenly feel alive or like I’m ready to do again.
29:04
It’s such a subtle shift, but it’s also very obvious because you’re no longer in that like role and then pay attention to that energetic shift because this is how you start to learn your patterns and then take it a layer deeper in using the face to face, to set your calendar up, to set your social life up to set your career path and productivity up to set your relationships up.
29:24
All of that is when you can start to notice your unique pattern of the energy shifts from follicular to ovulation.
29:31
There is this even subtle shift where you’re even more energetic, you just are feeling yourself.
29:36
I think your time of ay or is like, I’m just so pretty and so great.
29:39
And all these things like notice that shift and can you let yourself feel that and be in that magnetism that your hormones are helping you create?
29:46
And then you will notice the shift from ovulation to luteal.
29:49
I think that one’s the most prominent one for most people that you’re probably already aware of.
29:54
But notice when does your energy around?
29:57
What time, what day of your unique cycle does it start to feel like, oh, I’m not feeling like as social or I’m like selectively social or my energy is slowing down or I don’t have the capacity to produce as much day to day.
30:10
And like that’s where you start to slow down.
30:12
You take things off of your plate and this is what I mean by building your productivity calendar and goes layers deeper as you get used to these energetic shifts.
30:20
And then there is something called the progesterone drop off and it usually happens.
30:25
It depends on the individual, but it’s usually 24 to 48 hours right before your period is about to start.
30:30
And it just feels like all hell is breaking loose in your life as well.
30:34
All of the 15 when you’re just like, what’s happening and you just feel like you lose, you just like lose it, like lose all momentum.
30:40
You’re like, I literally just need to exist and be a human being.
30:43
And that’s the progesterone drop off, which is normal.
30:46
It can be really intense for some people depending on your progesterone levels.
30:50
But we all have that month or just like life is part and I just cannot exist anymore.
30:55
And that is something normal because your body is about to bleed.
30:58
It’s doing a lot of things for you.
31:00
When you notice that that is like your ultimate like self love, self care day where you just like I give myself full permission to just exist as a human being or ask for help or whatever it is you’re needing in that.
31:12
And obviously like we have jobs, we have relationships.
31:15
So I mean, you might have kids et cetera but where can you like double down on receiving the support during that time?
31:21
But when you know this about yourself and you know those like shifts, they can capitalize double down on things and take like even deeper.
31:30
It just gets to get like more and more and more as you learn these energy shifts, the progesterone drop off that right there is such an important piece I think for all of us to listen to because if you’re someone that has been doing the work for a very long time, you’ve been doing therapy for a long time and you’re asking yourself like why do I still have these moments of low, low, low and life feels so hard and I so triggered and so disregulation every single month and da da, da, da da, it’s like you just gave everyone such an opportunity to understand themselves that this is like literally a part of our being.
32:04
It’s a part of our biological being.
32:08
I do think with like hormone healing and hormone optimization, it can get better.
32:12
but it’s a part of our cycles that they Yeah.
32:15
Yeah, exactly.
32:15
The progesterone drop off is that moment where you just like your hormones reach the lowest point in progesterones is the hormone that helps you have energetic sustenance in that latter half of your cycle to your bleed.
32:28
But once it like completely drops off, you literally just like it’s like suddenly you just zero energy just like everything got zapped out of you and you feel that and depending on what life brings that month or you know, whatever it can feel really intense and it’s just literally, it’s your body being like, I just need you to rest because I’m about to bleed and I’m using all my energy to allow you to, to shed.
32:53
So can you just take a moment a day in 20 minutes extra to just let me do it?
32:59
It’s your body is asking you for it and yeah, full permission slip to just be like, OK, I’m gonna like throw their hands in the air and rest totally.
33:08
I mean, this goes back to like everything I’ve been talking about the podcast recently.
33:11
It’s just like honor your capacity, listening to your body, like meet your body where it’s at.
33:16
And so many times our brain wants to make sense of what our body is doing.
33:20
But our body at the end of the day is saying like, hey, I need this from you.
33:23
So help me out because I’m actually helping you and supporting you in this way.
33:28
Just, just kind of listen to me real quick and take some time.
33:31
The other thing that I love that you mentioned too just now was like leveraging your cycle for your productivity levels and scheduling.
33:39
That is something that I’ve taken seriously in my life for the last two years and it has been such a game changer all the way down to like.
33:47
So everyone knows I just got engaged and we’re thinking about our wedding.
33:52
I told me I was like, I’m going to, we’re going to have our wedding either follicular or ovulation week.
33:57
I’m not doing in my luteal base, but I would have never thought about that if I didn’t spend the last two years doing that because I do feel such a different socially like I am so much more even with conferences or big meetings or things like that.
34:13
I get so excited when it’s around my follicular ovulation phase or when I’m doing deals or when I’m communicating or doing a new proposal and stuff like my energy is so much different.
34:23
And so if I can tailor that around that as much as possible, it really does set me up for success.
34:29
And then when I start to be more or less social and less like wanting to, let’s just say, sell myself, put myself out there in different ways, like I’m supporting myself in that.
34:39
So I love that.
34:39
You mention that.
34:40
Is there any other tips that you have for someone to leverage their hormones as a way to optimize the way that they want to show up in the world?
34:48
Like, you know, like I feel like so many listeners, you know, they’re the kinds of listeners that want more for themselves.
34:55
They’re multi passionate, they’re craving this, like express life in all ways.
35:02
They want to like literally soak up all the zest that life has to offer.
35:06
And so what are some other tips and tricks that someone can use to squeeze the most out of life to fully enjoy it?
35:13
But also honoring the body?
35:16
Yeah, I, I always think it’s like this other relationship with our emotions and when you have this new relationship with your emotions, you have this new relationship with life and then this new relationship with the people in your life.
35:28
And I think where something that I, I don’t, maybe this is the perspective that I have on it, but I really do think like as a woman, your menstrual cycle can deepen your relationships with like your friends with your partner in dating and, and all of it.
35:46
Like, I really do think there is this unique overlap that some people don’t experience.
35:51
And more what I mean by that.
35:53
I think the first and foremost thing where I think it changed a lot of my clients lives is in L phase administration where you are a little more sensitive and learning to have just like that deep awareness with your body and your emotions of being like, I’m going to be more sensitive during this cycle.
36:08
So I might take things you say a little personally.
36:10
So can we lay off on like certain things or can we wait and pause these conversations for other moments and just being able to have that communic level of communication with someone in your life, I think makes a world of a difference.
36:23
Like I have a business partner for example, and when she’s bleeding, she’s like, I cannot be creative or think of anything.
36:29
So can you please take the reins on this and then vice versa?
36:32
Or if one of us like in one of my friendships is, is triggered or feeling activated?
36:37
Like I’m actually like in my luteal phase, I don’t think this is the best time for us to have a conversation or even making social plans where people are like, oh, I want to do this.
36:45
I want to do that.
36:46
I’m like, I’m going to be bleeding during that week.
36:48
Could we move it like to a different time?
36:50
So I can enjoy this a little bit more or in partnership?
36:53
You can take those same concepts and apply it to your romantic relationships or even to dating.
36:59
Like I remember in dating where I’d be like, oh, I’m not available that week because it’s actually a time of my cycle where I’m experiencing X Y Z.
37:07
I didn’t go into like depth because they’re like, know the person that well.
37:10
But I did normalize those conversations in my dating experiences very early on.
37:14
Some then OK with it, some weren’t and the ones that were, I’m like, OK, then you’re not a fit for me.
37:19
I just feel like it can deepen your communication really immensely and in allowing yourself to move through emotional ways, energetic ways, being a different person.
37:29
And I think embracing the multidimensionality of being a human, but even more so being a female with all the, the shifts in ways we experience allows you to like color your world in a whole different way.
37:41
Wow.
37:41
I am so proud of you for bring that into dating.
37:46
That is not something that I’ve ever done.
37:48
But I, do you remember you and I even having this conversation with Nick where you were like asking him like, hey, how does it, how does it feel to hear about credits?
37:55
Like cycle and stuff and we were just like having such an open beautiful conversation.
37:59
And Nick was very honest, he was like, until I started dating Kara, I really didn’t even think about this world.
38:06
She has educated me so much on just how she is for different people.
38:11
I think the other day he was laughing or something.
38:13
He’s like, you never bring up questions like this.
38:15
You only bring them up when you lo old phase.
38:18
He’s like, it’s so funny.
38:19
Now he can tell like what my patterns are and he’ll reflect it back to me.
38:24
And I’m like, man, this gives you so much insight into who I am and it is such a gift because you know, I definitely have now that I’ve owned like living my life, be the express, owning my emotions, telling my partner in my life everything and also welcoming every single emotion.
38:42
I can become a freaking baby when it comes to right before my lud phase in my luteal phase.
38:47
And right before my period, I am soaking it up and I am dramatic and I no longer give myself a hard time and he loves it.
38:55
And then the other two weeks, the other times I’m in different seasons.
38:59
And so how can partners support each other?
39:03
Maybe this is either speaking to the women that are here, how can they communicate to their partners?
39:08
What’s going on in their cycle?
39:10
Obviously, that we’re four different people.
39:11
But how can they start that conversation and then can we also switch it to what men can do to support women in their cycle and each month?
39:20
Yeah.
39:21
So I’ll start with like the women.
39:23
I kind of like to keep it even simpler when I teach it like it in this way, I call it cyclical intimacy, but just break it up into two the first half.
39:33
I kind of call it like slap your ass where you’re just like more fun and you’re just going to tolerate more playfulness or joking and things like that where it’s just like, OK, I’m here or the banter, the flirts, the sensuality of life and experiencing it together and intimacy.
39:49
And then I call it teddy bear, teddy bear season when you’re Yeah, the menstruation where it’s like I just want you to hug me and love me and feed me and that’s about it and then listen to me and sometimes I might want you to say things back to me, but for the most part, just listen to me like, don’t try to solve my problems because I’m just intending their season.
40:07
So it’s more of just like that being held and stuff.
40:10
And so that’s kind of how you can explain it to the person you’re dating and maybe have a more intimate relationship or maybe you’ve had a long term partner or wherever you’re at and your, your romantic relationships, you can break it up in two seasons and I feel like, that’s a fun way and tangible way for like the male psyche to understand what you’re experiencing.
40:29
And then on the opposite side of the coin, if you are a man listening to this and you’re like, I do want to be more supportive to a sister or romantic partner.
40:37
Whoever it is the females in your life, it is like, notice when she does become quieter or more sensitive, like you will naturally pick up on the fact that like something is different about you and I’m you may not tangibly understand it, but most likely it’s her hormone.
40:52
And I think what can be supportive is I think some women and sometimes just as humans, we have a hard time asking for help or we have a hard time noticing that maybe we should be slowing down or whatever it is.
41:03
So just offer like that simple offering almost opens the door for that person to receive it.
41:09
And sometimes there’s a practice in that.
41:11
But I think if you notice a subtle shift just being like, how can I be here with you more?
41:16
How can I take something off your plate?
41:18
What can I do that’s going to feel supportive or make your life easier?
41:22
I can almost guarantee in the legal menstruation phase, she’ll probably like cry or get emotional or just feel like this immense gratitude that like you’re offering it because she might not even understand just yet.
41:32
And if it’s just like molecular or ovulation phase.
41:36
Like that playfulness that banter that whatever you’re feeling is just take it, you can take it like the extra mile just being like, let’s go do something more fun or like what’s something new that we want to experience together?
41:47
Because she might not even notice that.
41:49
Like that’s what she’s going through.
41:51
So when you can offer that and provide that, provide that if you’re noticing those energetic shifts yourself, that kind of like opens up that door of communication for the two of you to start playing with this energy.
42:02
And then also just like you just observe, I think most first and foremost, like if you can just observe the differences in her and know that like there are going to be these, these sudden shifts, it’s gonna make your life a lot easier and knowing that like she is not the same person every day and then you’re not expecting her to be the same person every day.
42:21
And I know for facts with a lot of my clients that in itself from both ends of the spectrum has helped a lot of people alleviate unnecessary fighting during the video or frustrations or being mean to each other when they didn’t intend to.
42:36
And I think it creates a lot more harmony in the relationship dynamic and a lot more fun.
42:41
So good, so good.
42:42
I remember a male friend in my life.
42:45
I think multiple male friends in my life have been like, hey, she’s saying she’s more sensitive, like, right before your period, like, is that really a thing?
42:53
Like, should I take her seriously or should I, like, almost, like, I don’t know how to handle her.
42:57
Like, I don’t know how to believe and like, it is so true.
43:00
Take it seriously because that is, that is a real thing that is, we are more sensitive and what I love that you talk to too so much.
43:06
And that is like as women, you know, especially when we don’t even know what’s going on.
43:10
We’re trying to make sense of what the heck is going on within ourselves.
43:13
If we get met without having to ask you to meet us in that there’s so much healing and that experience, right?
43:20
Because we are struggling to make sense of what’s happening in the first place.
43:24
And then a lot of the times if we haven’t been well practiced and like Ashley speaking our truth and knowing what we want in our need in that moment, it just turns into this whole spiral that is not necessarily unnecessarily, but it just happens.
43:38
And if the men in our lives or the people in our lives can just pick up on that.
43:42
It’s like, oh, I get to love her in this way and there’s just so much healing in just that and it’s the most gentle act, but it’s the biggest gift that we can give to each other in partnership and it’s the same thing obviously turning around, but just keeping it for the topic of, of today, like, it’s such a beautiful gift.
44:02
So I’m so glad that you brought that up.
44:03
, before we start to kind of make it towards the end of the episode, is there anything else that comes to mind that you would like to share with those that are listening today that can really use their hormones?
44:15
Yeah, their hormone health as a way to optimize and truly live the fullest in today.
44:22
Yeah, I feel like I always come back to simplicity.
44:25
I feel like there was a lot in this episode where it was like, oh, I wanna do all the things and I think the natural achiever in all of us are like the one that wants to make our health the best it can be.
44:35
It is knowing that there’s there’s baby steps and keep it super simple so that you don’t fro all your hormonal ecosystem by trying to do all the things.
44:45
So pick your most favorite thing and you can make a list and then implement over the course of like 30 days, 60 days, 90 days and build upon that.
44:54
I think the more simple implementation actually creates the longest longevity which comes back to, you know, optimizing your, your body, your productivity, all of that and your capacity to learn and change and evolve.
45:06
So simple is best in my opinion.
45:09
I think that’s, that’s what I would want to leave people with so good.
45:13
I love that.
45:13
It’s so important.
45:14
I literally was having that reflection today as to like, what are the, some of the, like the biggest moves that I’ve made in my health?
45:21
And they’ve actually been the simplest changes to like how I eat or what do I eat first or like the time of day that I eat and those are not even like the supplements or getting mixed into like biohacking and all these crazy things that everyone is always shooting for.
45:35
It’s always in the simplest habit changes that create the longest I think change.
45:42
And it’s almost like the foundation for those other things because I think those other things always helped optimize.
45:47
But these littlest simplest things can make lifelong change.
45:52
Absolutely.
45:53
Yeah.
45:53
Yeah.
45:54
All right.
45:55
So thank you so much for coming on to the Pli Express podcast with Rena.
46:00
I would love for you to share where can someone find you connect with you and if you’re currently offering you anything?
46:06
And what does that look like?
46:07
Yeah, I mainly hang out in Instagram world.
46:11
So my two accounts are flirty, fertile and thriving that’s catered on like all the women’s health and fertility things and then shake Rego is a hybrid of like my personal life and the lessons that I’m going through the mindset, like more of that kind of work.
46:26
But I post on both of them pretty consistently.
46:28
So you’ll find me on either page and I am open for 1 to 1 clients and then I have a wait list going because later this summer slash early fall, depending on when it’s fully ready.
46:41
I’m going to be opening up a membership platform called your Flirty Bet and Thriving Life.
46:46
So if you want a community of like, like London women learning all the things that I’ve talked about here in like monthly master class and group coaching settings, then that membership will be open very soon.
46:57
So you can contact me and we can put you on the waitlist if you are interested.
47:01
Amazing.
47:01
Did you send me that link?
47:02
Maybe I can include or like, I’ll just have them reach out to you all.
47:05
This will be in the show notes about it so you guys can reach out to her.
47:09
But thank you so much for coming onto the podcast.
47:11
It’s such a pleasure to have you shi you’re always so well versed and I feel like you are just also well experienced and yeah, it was just such a blessing and I am so excited to hear from everyone that gets to listen to this.
47:24
So if you loved this episode today, please leave a review or send us a DM on Instagram.
47:30
So we can just kind of hear what your thoughts were.
47:33
And if there’s anything else that you guys have questions about, obviously, you can reach out to Shay.
47:37
But if you want to bring them up on the podcast, I’ll be happy to bring she back.
47:42
I feel like there’s just so much that we can learn from Shay and we can just grow from here.
47:47
So, thank you.
47:48
Thank you so much for being here.
47:49
Thanks for having me.

In this episode, we covered:

  • Shay opens up about her story of having HPV, pre-cancerous cells, the possibility of removing her cervix to heal her hormones fully, and how she now has the option to have children.
  • How important your hormones are and the impact they have on your health.
  • The four different seasons a woman experiences every month.
  • Women are different people every day; how to navigate this and know what’s coming
  • How to leverage your female hormonal cycle to increase productivity and capacity.
  • The progesterone drop that happens about two days before your period and why everything feels so hard.
  • How to invite your relationships into the conversation about where you are in your cycle.
  • When it’s a good time to have hard discussions versus when it’s not.
  • How a man can support the women in their life
  • The beauty of effectively communicating through the lens of a woman’s hormonal cycle.
  • And obviously, so much more!

About Shay:

Shay Frago is a Holistic Hormone & Life coach. She is a certified NLP life & success coach, graduate of the Integrative Institute of Nutrition & the Women’s integrative institute where she has studied over 160 dietary theories, holistic wellness, general hormone health, and women’s fertility. She takes an integrative & holistic approach to the menstrual cycle & aims to simplify what it means to live in tune with your cyclical nature. She wants more women to feel like they can work with their own unique timeline to live their dream life without the fear of their hormones and getting older.

Connect with Shay:

Website: Shayfrago.com
Instagram: @Shayfrago and @flirtyfertileandthriving

I loved my conversation with Shay because she is so well-educated, experienced, and integrated! This is a tune-in episode for EVERY woman. Take lots of notes!

Join The Fully Expressed Community, where you can be surrounded by other women who are also on the same path of personal growth, healing, and uncovering their authentic expression. Being in a community surrounded by others can truly be one of the most supporting and healing containers to support your personal invitation.

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Episode #40: How Can Checking In On Mental Health Save Lives?

Have you ever thought about the life-saving impact of simply checking in on someone's mental health? In this heartfelt solo episode of "The Fully Expressed," I dive deep into the importance of mental health awareness, particularly during Mental Health Awareness Month.

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Karenna Soto

I’m an expert in communication, creating healthy professional and personal relaitonships, and in managing and overcoming anxiety with a knack for navigating difficult conversations both in personal and professional atmospheres. I am here to invite you into your fullest authentic expression and personal evolution.

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More About Karenna

I know how debilitating it can feel to be stuck on the perpetual hamster wheel of a life that you don’t enjoy living. Sure, externally you’ve got it all together, but internally, it likely feels like you’re questioning E V E R Y T H I N G.

Can you relate?

It was when I felt disconnect with what I was doing, and with how I was showing up in my life that I realized the answers lied in how I was doing what I was doing that I decided I no longer wanted to keep living within the box of what I was told to be and decided to boldly express myself and stand for what truly mattered to me.

I have seen the power of fully expressing myself in my personal and professional life. Now I want to bring it to the masses, which is why I’ve created this podcast.

This podcast is my invitation to all people struggling to be fully expressed in life, relationships, and business. It’s for those who are wanting to feel A L I V E, connected, and in love with their life, relationships, and business.

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