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­­­How to Get Out of Menopause

photo: Mario on flickr

photo: Mario on flickr

From the minute I heard about this whole menopause thing, I thought That’s not for me!

Sweating? Weight gain? Out-of-control moods?

No thanks! I’ll pass!

photo: Melissa Phillippe

photo: Melissa Phillippe

When I first started the process, everything was going great.

No more periods! No more cramping! No more standing in line to buy tampons even though I look like a guy!

I had taken a vow to myself that menopause would be a breeze for me, and it was. No symptoms whatsoever.

Then two things happened.

First, I went to the doctor for a pap smear.

The pap smear was fine, as fine as anything involving a speculum can be.

speculum done

It was the little chat afterwards that was the problem.

A little chat where the nurse practitioner outlined all the possible symptoms that menopause might bring. Even though I was right in the middle of it and hadn’t had any symptoms yet.

But she had a file in front of her. And we were in a medical office. It was all so official.

That was the first strike.

The second strike was a few days later, when I read an article in Oprah magazine about – you guessed it – all the symptoms of menopause.

Not quite as official as the doctor’s office, but just as authoritative.

It was Oprah! Or, at least, her staff!

Her well-meaning, we-want-to-help-you-in-every-possible-way crew.

A few days after strike two, I had my first hot flash.

Just like that: Oprah and a nurse tag-teamed me, and my body became an unpredictable, home-made sauna.

photo: Kullez on flickr

photo: Kullez on flickr

WTF?

This went on for a few weeks.

At first, I told myself it wasn’t that bad. There are worse things than being an unpredictable, home-made sauna.

But then I read another statistic. One that said that one in four women never experience hot flashes.

Really? Who knew?

Oprah and the nurse made it sound like everyone gets them. They made it sound like you’re not really a woman unless your body’s thermostat goes haywire and decides that you’re in Florida for a few minutes.

photo: J. C. Montgomery on flickr

photo: J. C. Montgomery on flickr

But one in four women never go to Florida.

I wanted to be one of those women.

That’s when I remembered my vow. I’d been telling myself for years that I was not going to get hot flashes.

And now suddenly I was?! Just because somebody else told me I needed to?!

So I had a little chat with my brain.

Brain¸ I said. You don’t have to do this. Don’t let Oprah and that nurse talk you into doing something you don’t want to do. It’s never been your dream to imitate the state of Florida. Or an unpredictable piece of spa equipment. Now is not the time to make that your dream! It’s not my dream, and it’s not yours either. Got it?

Got it, said my brain.

And just like that, I stopped getting hot flashes.

photo: Melissa Phillippe

photo: Melissa Phillippe

Now, I don’t mean to discount the power of physical methods to reduce or eliminate hot flashes.

There are plenty of them, and before Florida hit, I was already engaging in these preventative measures:

I don’t smoke. I don’t drink coffee or alcohol. I meditate, eat whole foods and exercise regularly.

But I was doing all these things and my body still became a renegade sauna.

Because of the power of suggestion.

photo: Double-M on flickr

photo: Double-M on flickr

I’m not saying that this brain-talking method is going to work for everyone, but I also know I’m not the only one who got talked into a wacky symptom I didn’t need to get.

My brain and I have been down this road before. Chronic back pain. Chronic fatigue.

And now Florida.

The power of the mind to influence the body is just beginning to be fully understood. And when it comes to this whole menopause dealio, I say it’s time to start employing that power!

Yes, there are physical, in-the-world things we can do.

But we can also turn our minds into a Get-Out-Of-Menopause-Free Card!

Whoo hoooo!

GET OUT OF FLORIDA FREE

What’s your experience with using your mind to heal your body? Share your comments below!

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25 Responses to ­­­How to Get Out of Menopause

  1. Antonia August 18, 2015 at 6:20 am #

    Like you, I was just sure if I learned the possible symptoms, I’d experience them all. So, in spite of being the outstanding researcher that I am, I stayed away from the library where there are volumes of experiences and symptoms and ‘what to expect’ stories. Yes, I had a few hot flashes, but, overall, it went pretty smooth. I’m sure it’s because of the power of suggestion.

    • Z Egloff August 18, 2015 at 11:41 am #

      Yay!! I love hearing this. I especially like knowing that you got through the whole thing with only a few hot flashes. I am inspired! :)

  2. Karen August 18, 2015 at 7:56 am #

    You’re so spot-on with this. The more well-intentioned but negative information we hear, the more we’re likely to experience what they’re warning us about.

    Law of Attraction in action.

    But! As a Floridian, I suggest you change your hot-flash analogy because going to Florida, for even a few minutes, is a good thing! Could zillions of old folks on tricycles be wrong??? How about Ohio-in-the-summer? Now we’re talkin’. 😉

    • Z Egloff August 18, 2015 at 11:37 am #

      Ha! Okay, yes, I do concede that there are those who LOVE Florida. And there are also folks – like my parents – who love, or at least abide in, Ohio-in-the-summer weather.

      And for the record, I would never want to mess with a zillion old folks on tricycles. Never!! :)

  3. River August 18, 2015 at 8:02 am #

    Hi Z,
    This is where my ‘BIG MIRACLE’ happened. I was told and all the test came back that I had some pretty serious heart conditions having to do with my valves. At first I bought into this but I still was a good metaphysician and said to my body, “hey lets not give this a lot of energy’ because I know that which I pay attention to grows. Then another condition came up – after being post-menopausal, I started to bleed during intercourse. Well Wow! Like really body? Not fair!
    So I went to the nurse practitioner who said, we need to do a biopsy and you need to go see a cardiologist before we can do it. Oh, and btw, your heart murmur has gotten worse.
    At first I freaked. Then I got my body together with my soul, and prayed big time. I did affirmative prayer with my minister and about 3 practitioners. By the time I got to the big-time-hotsy-totsy-lets-not-mess-around cardiologist, I knew my heart was fine. And guess what? It was. Not only was it fine, so was my biopsy.
    And that was my Big Miracle. I have been madly in love with prayer ever since (and my body for listening to it).
    I hope that serves others to hear.
    With Love,
    River

    • Z Egloff August 18, 2015 at 11:34 am #

      Hi River! Thank you SO much for sharing this. What an awesome and amazing story. I love hearing stuff like this! And I know that others will as well. :)

  4. Kayla August 18, 2015 at 9:18 am #

    Cool. I’m going to try this. Never have. before. thanks. I’ll let you know how it goes. :-)

    • Z Egloff August 18, 2015 at 11:33 am #

      Awesome. Yes, keep me posted! :)

  5. Sherry August 18, 2015 at 11:36 am #

    My Menopause was relatively easy. I had hot flashes but I enjoy being warm. That’s why I live in Florida!

    I hurt my shoulder once while working out. The pain didn’t seem to be going away so, I went to see a Chiropractor for the first time. Know what I learned? Once you see one, they don’t let you go! And, he didn’t help me so, I stopped going. I decided to heal myself. Everyday, while practicing Yoga, I breathed the Prana into my shoulder. It didn’t take long for the pain to go away.

    Another time, I had a bad fall whilst rollerblading. I fell forward and hit the ground (the grassy thank goodness) chin first. As I lay there, I told myself not to move. I knew I needed to relax and tense up. After awhile, I got up and went to my car and drove home. I very carefully got into bed and said “heal.” The next morning when I got up, I hardly hurt at all. If I had tensed up when I fell and worried about it, I think I would have really hurt myself!

    • Z Egloff August 18, 2015 at 11:45 am #

      Awesome examples from another fine resident of Florida. :)

      I love this idea of breathing Prana into any areas of discomfort. Beautiful! And I love that you talked to your body the minute you fell. And that you were able to relax into the experience. These are great images and ideas for all of us!

  6. Sherry August 18, 2015 at 11:37 am #

    I knew I needed to relax and NOT tense up. Lol

  7. Jennie August 18, 2015 at 4:46 pm #

    I love this article. My doctor decided to have “the chat” with me during my routine exam at age 38. I still don’t know why she decided to catalogue all the possible symptoms when I was relatively young and having no problems. I think the pendulum has swung a little too far in the other direction from the days when even the word menopause was taboo. It is a normal (and somewhat private) process that you can learn about if you wish when the time comes. Are musicals, endless tv ads and entire catalogs full of products really necessary? Can’t we trust women to make their own decisions how to manage it (from mainstream medicine to alternative medicine to just doing nothing)?

    • Z Egloff August 19, 2015 at 11:24 am #

      Yes, I agree. Having menopause no longer be a taboo subject is awesome, but the pendulum has definitely swung to into the TMI direction. I love all the questions you’re asking here. Yeah – how about trusting us to make our own decisions as to how to manage menopause, especially when we realize that we have more power to manage it than we thought! :)

  8. Jill Shinn August 18, 2015 at 5:18 pm #

    Hi Z, I’m in the same boat as you except that I’ve always been a cold person, so Florida-like conditions are almost a nice vacation (…just wouldn’t want to live there forever!) Hang in there, lady!

    • Z Egloff August 19, 2015 at 11:25 am #

      Yes, I’m definitely seeing from these comments that not everyone is as Florida-averse as me! And nice to know that we’re sharing a boat! :)

  9. Suzanne August 18, 2015 at 9:16 pm #

    Great topic, and example.

    Consciously conceiving an awesome healthy son (without drugs…or IVF…or a partner), having a healthy active pregnancy, and birthing him naturally and gently at home a couple of months before I turned 44 took a whole lot of listening to and following my inner knowing, and not listening to what most people had to say about any of it : )

    P.S. once you’ve passed an 8 pound 4 oz human through your body, a speculum is not really that big of a deal.

    • Z Egloff August 19, 2015 at 11:26 am #

      What a GREAT example of following your heart and inner voice and not listening to the masses. Yes!! Thanks for sharing this with us. :)

  10. Becka August 20, 2015 at 5:46 pm #

    What a great story, Z! I’m glad to hear you’re out of Florida. I had an MS flare and had a hard time getting completely out of it for a while. Then I started seeing this body-healing therapist (i don’t remember what she’s actually called, that’s what i called her). We did really weird and really cool practices that I have never tried before. I noticed that after 2 sessions with her I had no symptoms. They only seem to come back if I eat something that my body doesn’t like, if I’m super tired, or super stressed. And as a bonus I have this whole new relationship with myself and my body. I now know my body is communicating to me and (as you mentioned) I can communicate back. I love this new connection I developed. Thanks again for sharing!

    • Z Egloff August 21, 2015 at 10:08 am #

      Weird and cool practices rock! I love that you found relief so quickly! And that you’ve started an ongoing dialogue with your body. It’s such a rich and rewarding endeavor!

      I can also relate to needing to eat right, get enough rest, and find an optimal level of stress (not too much, not too little). :)

  11. Nora August 22, 2015 at 2:14 am #

    Seems like you hit a spark here.

    I am jealous

    I want a get out of chronic fatigue card

    I want one that lets me LIKE vegetables

    I want one that makes me meditate and exercise daily. ( i do exercise but not daily so there is some progress)

    Mostly i make slow progress and then fast sliding back into old behaviour.

    YUK

    On the other hand menopause just slipped past me. I did not even notice it until it was almost over.

    I’m a bit overweight but i know I’ll be able to lose it once i make up my mind.

    So all things considered it pretty much first world problems for me.

    I can get by without a job so lucky me.

    • Z Egloff August 23, 2015 at 12:47 pm #

      Hi Nora, That sounds like a lot of stuff. Glad to know that you’re making progress with the exercise! And I’m impressed that menopause slipped past you. Well done! (For what it’s worth, I had chronic fatigue and used the work of a guy named John Sarno to get out of it. If you’re interested, check out his book The Divided Mind.) Also, that would be awesome to find a Makes You Like Vegetables card!! If you find one, let me know! 😉

  12. phil lack August 25, 2015 at 1:26 pm #

    kudos to Dr, Sarno. He is the go-to guy for all those pesky mind/body issues (I will not say ailments)

    • Z Egloff August 25, 2015 at 1:47 pm #

      Yes – he’s a life saver. I am truly grateful for his work – what a pioneer!

  13. Rand August 28, 2015 at 4:50 am #

    It’s good to read that people are skipping Menopause, and living a healthy life. A lot of studies are confirming that the mind (the way one think) effects the body – Keep up the good work.

    • Z Egloff August 28, 2015 at 12:01 pm #

      Hi Rand, Yes – that’s been our experience. It’s nice to know that science is catching up with this reality! :)

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