“Sometimes I think, I need a spare heart to feel all the things I feel.”
A Thousand Flamingos
What are emotions?
It is hard to say exactly what emotions are. Perhaps the most accurate thing we can say about our emotions is that we have them and they way we experience them is different from every other person on the planet. Emotions don’t live in our brains, although our brain and neurology play a large part in how we feel them. Emotions live in the entirety of our being and are influenced from everything from our genes and environment to who we are with and what activity we are engaged in at the moment.
Emotions are how we respond to what is happening around us: our physical location, the people we are with, what we are doing, and many other factors both in and out of our control. Emotions vary according to things like our personality and our unique lived experience. Most emotions are classified as positive or negative. Positive emotions are uplifting, motivating, and encourage us to engage in activities and thinking processes that will maintain a positive mood. Negative emotions at times motivate us to positive behavior. For example, if we are sad or lonely, we may choose to engage in a pleasant self-care activity such as yoga or listening to our favorite music. However, negative emotions can also create more and/or greater negative emotions. Addressing negative emotions often requires our conscious intention to do so.
What is aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils for emotional benefit. Although it may seem like a relatively new practice, aromatherapy has been used all around the world for centuries. Scientists conducted studies in the early 1990s to better understand how aroma influences the brain. It turns out, the fragrance of essential oils that our bodies respond to also works with our minds. Essential oils offer us a way to uplift our mood and manage our emotions in a way that is safe, natural, inexpensive, and offer quick relief.
How does aromatherapy work?
The olfactory system controls our sense of smell. Different parts of the brain activate to process aroma through the olfactory system. The olfactory system is connected to emotions and memories in the limbic system. The limbic system creates and emotional response based on the emotions and memories it associates with the aroma.
Each essential oil has particular chemical properties. The chemicals that make up the oil determine its benefits, including what sort of emotional response it elicits.
Using essential oils to manage moods is simple, effective, and intuitive. When it comes to moods, essential oils are classified as either uplifting or calming. When we are feeling down, uplifting aromas will help to motivate and inspire us. When we are stressed or agitated, calming oils soothe and give a sense of grounding. Essential oils empower us to take our emotional life into our own hands. As we become more emotionally aware, we can offer ourselves the most appropriate essential oils to balance our mood anytime!
How to use essential oils to optimize your mood.
Read the instructions on the essential oil’s label before beginning. Some essential oils need to be diluted with a carrier oil such as coconut oil before use.
doTERRA offers these simple guidelines for using essential oils for mood management:
1. Determine the type of emotion you want to evoke.
2. Find an essential oil with the properties that fit the emotional response you want to promote
(Soothing, uplifting, calming, energizing, etc.)
3. Determine the best application method to help you experience the emotional benefits of the oil
(Diffusion, topical application, massage, etc.)
4. Consider blending several essential oils together to experience multiple emotional benefits
5. Apply the essential oil using your chosen method, and enjoy the immediate emotional
responses that follow!
Got questions? Let's chat. Shoot me an email as firstname.lastname@example.org for a free wellness consultation. I'll help you pick out which oils will help you achieve emotional balance.