When it is Spring, but it doesn't feel like it!
Out like a LION and in like a LAMB! That is what I was hoping for this March. As we wrap up the last few days of March, knowing the calendar says SPRING HAS FINALLY ARRIVED, but it still feels cold and damp outside. What is a person to do?! There is an oil for that remember!! Essential oils provide a powerful tool for our mood and emotions. We don't have to stay stuck on a dreary day any longer!! Read on!
When was the last time you smelled something that immediately took you back to an earlier memory? An aroma that was so strong that it transported you to a different place and time? As you recall this memory, was it a good memory that put a smile on your face or was it a bad memory that left you feeling angry or frustrated? Helen Keller once said, “Smell is a potent wizard that transports us across thousands of miles and all the years we have lived.” Our sense of smell can provoke emotions buried deep within our minds. Susan Lawton explains in her book Living Healthy and Happily Ever After, “Coming to understand your emotions will make you better equipped to improve yourself and perform better in all aspects of life.” This includes improving your overall health!
In order to understand how our emotions are linked to our sense of smell, we must first get a better understanding of how our nose is linked to our brain. The olfactory nerve (our ‘nose’ nerve) is the shortest of our cranial nerves and it connects directly to the center of our brain, to the region of our brain referred to as the “limbic system” or the emotional aspect of our brain. Our sense of smell is different than our other 4 senses. When we see, touch, hear, or taste something, the nervous system sends signals to the intellectual part of our brain in the frontal lobe. This is the rational part of our cerebral cortex. David Stewart points out in his book Healing Oils of the Bible, “This means we can think and reason unemotionally when we touch, taste, see and hear. We can get emotional later if we choose to do so, but these four senses do not directly stimulate our emotions.” Since the olfactory nerve connects directly to the center of the brain, it stimulates emotion first and then crosses over to the intellectual part of the brain second. This is why our emotions respond so well to the sense of smell!
Dr. David Hill, in a seminar on Healthy Mind, Healthy Body: Creating Emotional Balance, stated “Aroma is the greatest influencer of mood. We categorize memories through aromas linked to our limbic system.” This explains why aromas can bring up emotions and feelings that often times cannot be revealed in any other way. Stewart further explains “This is why essential oils are so valuable in releasing emotional patterns that trouble us, affecting our health and our behavior in ways we do not seem to be able to control.”
Not all aromas are created equally, however. Synthetic aromas will not give us the same response as a natural aroma. For instance, a lavender hand lotion with synthetic lavender will not evoke the same response in the brain as a drop of Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade lavender. According to Dr. Lawton, “CPTG essential oils are guaranteed to be 100 percent pure, natural, and free of synthetic compounds or contaminates.” Lavender is a delightful aroma that can both elevate and relax the body at the same time, when experienced in its natural state. When the aroma is smelled, the cranial nerve immediately sends a signal to the limbic system in the brain, resulting in the release of chemicals in the body giving either a positive or negative reaction, based on the body’s past experiences. Some companies try to produce synthetic versions of essential oils. While they may have a satisfactory fragrance, they offer no real support to the body so cannot be deemed therapeutic.
Essential oils are a powerful way to awaken our emotions and help us restore balance to our bodies. Each essential oil has its own individual chemistry and works naturally and uniquely to enhance the chemistry throughout the body and the mind. Balancing our lives emotionally, mentally and physically is very important. According to Karen D. Gilroy in her book Discovering the Healer Within, “We store mental and emotional memories in our cells…and the frequency of these stored memories communicate with the whole body.” Emotional release can happen with the use of essential oils through aromatherapy, resulting in an awakening of our emotions. Positive affirmations along with the use of essential oils is a great duo for resetting negative memories and thought patterns which keep our body locked in a state of poor health. Because our sense of smell is linked so closely with the emotional center of our brain, CPTG essential oils are many times the key to unlock these patterns within us.
Science has proved time and again the link between our emotional well-being and physical well-being. A healthy emotional state has healing effects on the body and researchers are studying how our emotions can influence our immunity and how we heal from injury and illness. Martin Seligman, PhD, one of the preeminent experts in the field of positive psychology commented recently about the power of our emotions on healing, “I didn’t believe in it when I started out 40 years ago, but the data has grown year after year, and it has become a scientific certainty.” The mind/body connection is very powerful and our body responds closely to the way we think, feel, and act. Dr. Lawton sums it up best saying, “When it seems impossible to make a shift in mindset, CPTG essential oils—gifts from Mother Nature—spark our inner awareness and wake us up to possibilities of powerful personal change, growth, positive thinking, and better health!”
So hang in there another few weeks. The weather will soon FEEL like spring! In the meantime, grab your favorite doTERRA oil, put a drop in your hand, rub your hands together then cup over your nose. Breathe deeply. Now isn't that better?