Emotions are an important part of overall health because they influence how we feel physically, and as such, are complex reactions. For example, the emotion of fear triggers over 1,400 known physical and chemical responses and activates over 30 hormones and neurotransmitters. Have you ever been afraid and felt it in the pit of your stomach? So whether we like it or not, our emotions affect what goes on in our bodies…so we need to be proactive in taking control over how the ‘negative’ emotions like to hang around sometimes!
It all starts with a thought. A thought is a onetime event. Picture yourself standing on the rim of a canyon. You cup your hands around your mouth and yell “Hello!” across the expanse. That is the thought, the “Hello”. What echoes back to you is the emotion reflected off from the thought. Here is an example. Thought: It’s raining outside. Emotion: Happy or Mad (depending if I’m a farmer and I want it to rain or someone who just paid $25,000 for an outdoor wedding venue) Depending on how long you let a negative emotion echo over your body will determine many things. If you process emotions in a timely fashion, then good! Negative emotions such as fear, anger, disappointment, apathy, worry, sadness, grief and so on are all a part of life and we all experience them, but don’t let them get stuck! They hold a negative energy, have a very low vibration and produce toxic chemical by products that are harmful to our physical bodies as well as our mental & emotional wellbeing. Holding onto anger can turn into bitterness, or if it’s directed inward can be depression. And when held onto for long periods of time, will be stored in our bodies to later produce physical manifestations. Many chronic health problems are emotional in origin. For a great book to read about this subject, I recommend Feelings Buried Alive Never Die, by Karol Truman.
So what does all this have to do with essential oils you ask?
We have five senses. Our sense of smell is different than the other four because it is not processed in the rational part of our brain (cerebrum). Aromas are processed in another part called the limbic system (the primal brain or the ‘feeling’ part the brain) Here also is where emotions are processed and traumatic memories stored. Which means….the chemistry found in the aromatic molecules of essential oils can directly influence emotions in the limbic brain.
When we experience a ‘negative’ emotion, it is ‘remembered’ by our limbic brain. Our limbic brain is like a library and has cataloged the automated responses (emotions) that we have had to situations since we were babies. Some emotional responses can become habitual. Are you always stressed out, a worry wort, easily offended, pessimistic, waiting for the other shoe to drop? With repeated use, these negative emotions create a rut that they will run in. But the good news is that the aromatic molecules of essential oils can go into the limbic brain and rewrite the scripts of the cell memory. They seek to clean the receptor sites of the cells with the negative cell memory, reprogram the cells and reset the DNA to factory setting!
Now you are back in the driver’s seat!! Whether you need to stabilize your emotions, calm anxious feelings, promote feelings of motivation, encourage relaxation, renew passion or ground yourself, you will find that you can achieve almost immediate responses with essential oils when used aromatically. Synthetic pharmaceutical mood drugs only symptom manage with many side effects. Essential oils go to the cellular level and work from there, providing true relief because the root cause has been addressed, which is emotional cell memory that needs to be cleansed, defragged and rewritten!
Top 5 Oil Classes When Deposited in Your Brain Provide Dividends!
Due to their chemical makeup, in most cases, essential oils can be classified as having uplifting or calming effects. Notice how the chemical structure of the plants and their corresponding essential oils provide specific mood altering properties:
- Mints: commonly known to be uplifting and energizing due to high concentrations of ketones
- Florals: typically composed of monoterpene alcohols and provide calming characteristics
- Trees, herbs & grasses: primarily include sesquiterpenes, oxides and esters, which promote soothing and grounding emotions, as well as feelings of renewal
- Citrus: contain chemical components like beta-pinene, monoterpenes and limone, which contain significant uplifting characteristics
- Spices: phenols provide warming properties
Tomorrow I will delve more into how combining the oils in these different categories can provide incredible benefits to modulate mood and emotions. This was my first ‘aha’ moment about how effective essential oils could be. I had a terrible problem with anxiety, panic and feeling overwhelmed at my last job. I was challenged to try a blend from doTERRA called Balance. I was very skeptical at first to think that anything that smelled that good could be effective, but I am happy to report that I was very wrong! Please come back tomorrow to find out the rest of the story!