A Brief Ode To Aromatherapy

This is slightly different than a typical food post, however this is also something I am deeply passionate about. It may seem a bit random, so I will break down the story that explains why aromatherapy and essential oils have changed my life-and how it can change yours too.

I feel as though many people overlook this powerful way of treating your mental and physical being. Many are focused on using other ways to cope with feelings like stress, anger, sadness, and anxiety. Like your mental state, people often rely on the same things for physical health like a common cold or a backache. Often we rely on medication, and drugs (like alcohol, and long night of partying with friends getting absolutely plastered). Some don’t even deal with their problems head on, and just glide through their daily life as though nothing has changed. As someone who was never really into that I tried my best to find various other outlets, including hanging out with friends casually or distracting myself by baking or listening to music. As I started to transition, my life and applications to my feelings did as well. I found myself confused, looking for another way to soften the blow that was my cluttered headspace. I had to deal with my first death in the family, a transition into college, and even some deep thoughts involving body confidence and just confidence in general. screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-3-15-03-pm

And so, I began to think. What could I do that would change the way I felt, or at least help push me so that I could get to a place I would be satisfied with. I somehow came across the idea of buying lavender oil, as I had been big into the idea for my skin and not so much my mentality. I used lavender oil in conjunction with melaleuca oil, screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-3-28-38-pmcalendula leaves, coconut oil, olive oil, and beeswax. It was quite a lovely recipe for a lotion (which was how I used it but is really described as nature’s neosporin).  It helped my skin’s texture and scars tremendously. You can find it here if you are interested in making it. The author also goes into detail on why each item is there and what it will do for our skin, which is obviously helpful for someone who is a beginner and is unsure.
screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-3-10-48-pmIt then occurred to me to begin using the lavender oil to help relax and destress myself. I began obsessing over it, buying dried lavender to completely fill any vehicle that would carry it, displaying it delicately in my room. I bought the oil in large bottles and would mostly use it when I went in the shower. I did this primarily in high school even though I did not have an overwhelming amount of stress, but it was essentially my version of meditation. I would rub it on my wrists and neck and then step into the shower. It may sound counterproductive, thinking maybe the water would potentially wash the oil off- but it didn’t. It would remain on my skin even after I took a shower unless I scrubbed hard. Whether the oil was actually calming, or perhaps I believed in the idea that it could potentially be calming, it worked. I would go into the shower with a million thoughts and come out with the same amount, but they were more organized. It was not until high school ended that I noticed aromatherapy in it’s true helpful form. When I entered college I had a really difficult time transitioning, and I began going to therapy at school. There are so many reasons behind that, it would be hard to condense them to be short enough to fit into this. One of the things my amazing therapist recommended was meditation, yoga, and aromatherapy. I now do all three, happily. Meditation played a huge part into my transition in addition to aromatherapy, especially with the two combined. Another aspect to aromatherapy that deeply relates to me and my school especially, is that it helps when you’re sick. Getting sick in my school is detrimental to almost everyone. It passes so easily from person to person and almost every time you are sick you still have to attend class. I started using aromatherapy to help clear up my sinuses, specifically eucalyptus and tea tree oil. Not only is it extremely relaxing but also very opening. I use it with a diffuser or simply just smell them. It helps relieve any clogged airways in addition to freeing the mind of any stress. I also use lavender in addition to these two oils as a sleep aid.
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I’ve only touched the very tip of everything that essential oils can do for us, and that is why I call this brief. I am so eager to learn more about each oil, and I would love to share the journey with you. A book I was recently gifted, titled Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, an Introductory Guide has really helped educate me more. I highly recommend you purchase it if you’re interested! With all of that, I will keep you updated with any new ways I’ve found this amazing practice to be helpful! Let me know if you have any questions, or any comments to share your own experience with aromatherapy and essential oils.

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*all illustrations are my own

*featured photo is the cover of the book mentioned

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