Scents have this incredible power to instantly lighten your mood, relax your mind, or energize your body.
For centuries, cultures have recognized the strong bond between scents and our senses. Just smelling something can evoke nostalgia and remind you of a place or person from as far back as your youth. Certain smells can instantly calm and soothe you.
This ability that scents have to unify our physical, psychological, and spiritual selves is the reason why aromatherapy has become such a phenomenon. Aromatherapy is the use of flower and plant essential oils that are meant to enhance and bring balance to your well-being.
These essential oils are derived from flowers, leaves, plants, branches and even the roots. Never use essential oils that have been synthetically manufactured in a lab. They are known to exist so be sure you are only buying natural essential oils particularly if you intend to use them for aromatherapy.
Those who use aromatherapy, swear by its powers. If you are new to aromatherapy, here are seven scents to get you started:
Citrus scents like Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Mandarin, Orange, Tangerine are uplifting and give the immunity a boost. It is cleansing and promotes creativity
Eucalyptus is invigorating. It improves respiratory issues and also enhances concentration.
Lavender has been known to reduce stress because of its calming effects. Because it is so relaxing, it helps with insomnia and encourages you to have a good night’s sleep.
Peppermint picks you up and helps improve your focus. It boosts energy. Additionally, it alleviates muscle pain and headaches.
Rose scents have been noted to aid with depression and anxiety; it is also a known aphrodisiac.
The uplifting scent of rosemary improves brain function and memory.
Sandalwood has been said to ease tension and grounding, calming effects.
When and How to Use Aromatherapy
There are no rules to when you aromatherapy. You can carry lavender with you while traveling to help soothe you during the hustle and bustle. If you are feeling particularly sluggish, a sniff of eucalyptus will instantly perk you up.
You can carry your aromas anywhere with you. Use it on the commute to work and when you are at the office. You can use it at home to relax or just before going to bed. There are different applications for essential oils that you can use:
Using it topically is the most common use for essential oils, and you can place them on your pulse points like your inner wrists or elbows, the back of the neck, and your temples. You can also rub a few drops between your palms and rub them together. Cover your nose with your scented hands and take a deep breath.
To use aromatherapy aromatically, you will need a diffuser. You can also make your own aromatic spritzers by combining essential oils with water before adding a dispersing agent. Steam inhalation is also an option, and you can do this by adding 3 – 7 drops of essential oil in boiling water, covering your head with a towel a breathing in the steam through your nose.
Baths and Compresses
Add a few drops of essential oils to your bath for a relaxing, aromatic soak. You can also steep a washcloth in oil-infused water. Aromatherapy baths can alleviate muscular pains and tension, reduce stress, stimulate circulation, improve the tone of your skin and aid in detoxification.
What to do next?
1. Revise your expectations and expect resistance
If you’re familiar with The Optimised Health Formula, then you know that Step 1 of successfully pulling out a strategy to optimise your health is to shift your mindset. We’ve looked at a few things you can do to improve your health. The ball is in your court. Yes, we all know that it takes more than just knowing what to do to actually do it.
That’s why I want to invite you to revise your expectations. Know that there will be resistance along the way. You might say to yourself “I’ll have a look tomorrow again”, “that’s not so urgent”, “I’m not sure that’s for me”, “I don’t think this will work for me”, or many other things. Often when we’re stepping out of our comfort zone (a.k.a. what we’ve been doing until now) we’re finding excuses to keep on doing what we’ve always done. The first step in success is acknowledging that. So… acknowledge where you’re at. Then…
Revise your expectations bearing in mind your goals AND your life. Not everything that I’ve shared in this blog post will resonate with you. Not everything will be applicable to you either. And that’s alright! But you’ve got to start somewhere.
So, as long as you’re clear on your goals and on your vision (Step 2 of The Optimised Health Formula), take a conscious decision of what you want to apply starting from today.
2. Carve out time, and make a plan
That’s where carving out time, and making a plan comes in. You know yourself at that stage better than I do. Use that knowledge to implement a plan of action that will help you start making positive changes into your life, that will soon bring positive changes in your health.
3. Just start
There’s no tomorrow in success. Any successful path starts today, with a small change that you keep on building onto. Commit to starting today with ONE small thing, and share with me in the comments what it is. This commitment will help you start – and keep – taking action!
4. Get support
We tend to want to do things on our own. I’m not stranger to that either. But I’ve learnt over time, and I’ve seen both with my personal coaching clients and professional mentoring clients, as well as with myself, that getting support helps to really create the change we’re after. So, if you’re stuck wondering what’s next, and you know you need help, I invite you to check out the many online resources I have created to help you reach your best of health: free articles, online community, online books and courses. If you’d like private personal coaching guidance, you can also book a call with me to discuss the personal coaching options that are available for your special needs.