Most folks think aromatherapy is all about various fragrances. True, no doubt. But it is much more than that. Did you always want to know more about aromatherapy but never got around to doing that? Do you think aromatherapy’s biggest function is to simply elevate mood swings? Now’s the time to dispel all myths and see how dim lighting, aromatic candles and essential oils can change your life.
Now you might be thinking how I know so much about it. Well, I’m not an expert but I’ve just started training under one. So worry not – whatever advice I’m giving out to you is safe. Let’s understand what the therapy is fundamentally all about. Aromatherapy utilizes plant extracts called essential oils to aid physical, mental, emotional and all-round wellness.
The beauty of essential oils is that they can have different effects for different ailments according to combination in which they are used. From soothing tension, relieving stress, anxiety, muscular tension and to relieving headaches, essential oils serve various purposes. Hence, they are truly essential!
I use aromatherapy to basically relieve my stress and get great massages at home. Being in the advertising industry, I have long hours of work and a lot of overtime to do. It is vital for me to take care of my health myself. Otherwise I would simply deteriorate and get myself into serious medical complications. I have been using aromatherapy from the past six months to keep me peaceful and calm.
Guess what – you’re really lucky that I am sharing all my blending secrets with you! I strongly suggest you create a great ambience before you start the therapy. Aromatic candles with dim lighting will be ideal to accentuate the stress relieving effect of the massage. It’s like eating from a well decorated plate– the visual treat will add to the therapy.
Inhale essential oils and keep your stress away
Stress comes in various forms – depression, guilt, relationship disturbance, helplessness, nervousness, insomnia and so on. In order to keep it away, all you have to do is add a few drops of the below mentioned essential oils to a cotton ball. Inhale gradually for a few minutes until you start feeling some relief. Have a killer presentation due to your big boss next week? Don’t break out into sweats because of that.
This will further ruin your preparation. Pick from essential oils of Lavender, Geranium, Jonquil, Chamomile, Basil, Cypress, Frankincense, Juniper, Melissa, Neroli, Ylang Ylang or Palma Rosa. The reason why I’m giving you such a long list is because availability of all these ingredients varies from place to place. A friend of mine was once showing up symptoms of depression. We didn’t want her to confront this issue and make it a further mess. We secretly made a perfume out of a selection of essential oils of Jasmine.
This worked wonders for her. You can take your pick from Ylang Ylang, Geranium, Lavender, Bergamot, Neroli, Nutmeg, Clary sage, Grapefruit, Sandalwood, Rose or Vetiver. Similarly, for helplessness, exhaustion or even insomnia, mix essential oils of Jasmine, Ylang Ylang and Lavender. These are the popular ones that will solve multiple problems.
Inhaling different essential oils can alter your mood, stimulate creativity, help concentration and rid an area of airborne viruses and bacteria. Make sure to maintain dim lighting – it’s all about the feel good factor, remember?
Blend your stress away
What would you do when you come home straight from office? Make a cup of coffee? Nah. Do you know the first thing that I reach out for? My sweet little bottles of essential oils! I make a concoction that straight away keeps my fatigue in tab. Take 5 drops of Patchouli, 20 drops of Geranium, 10 drops of Bergamot, 5 drops of Lavender and 10 drops of Ylang ylang. Mix these in 5 oz. of Sweet Almond oil and your stress relieving potion is ready. You can add it to your hot water bath and simply sit in it for hours!
The only reason why I keep stressing for dim lighting through aromatic candles is that it adds to the peace and calm of your room, which will in turn aid your healing procedure. Massage your own joints whilst you are in the hot tub. If you’re with your partner, you can do this job for each other!
I clearly remember a period at my office when I was spending countless nights doing my spreadsheets. Once the busy period got over, my biological clock went for a toss and I couldn’t even sleep when I was at home. I used to end up staring at the ceiling and I just didn’t want to take sleeping pills. I finally got to know of this blend for insomnia which has completely cured me of all my worries. Take 9 drops of Marjoram and mix it with 14 drops of Lemon. Add this mixture to a diffuser and light your room with candles. This will work wonders for your sex life too.
Scent your stress away
Are you sick and tired of those boring air fresheners that your colleague keeps spraying in your cabin every day? Give her an idea and scent your workplace or home with Lavender essential oil. Aromatherapy experts say that this aids in reducing computer errors by at least 25%. Imagine how much stress that could save you! You can use the same oil spray in your air conditioner so that you don’t keep breathing stale, stuffy air all the time. Play around with flavors like Lemon, Peppermint, Rosemary and Sandalwood Oil. Involve your colleagues and friends in this. Spray a new essential oil fragrance each day and ask them to identify which one you used!
You can also use these beautiful scents in your drawers, letterboxes, file and closets. Here’s my innovative tip – mix 5 drops of Lavender with a teaspoon of Jojoba base oil. Dab on a cotton stub and wipe/spray on your desk. When the heat generated from your computer warms the oil there is a pleasant fresh fragrance wafting through the air.
Bathe your stress away
This is the most special aspect of aromatherapy for me and so I mark out a specific day in the week to do this. This helps me maintain regularity in my therapy. This brings me to another point. You will be able to see solid results only if you maintain consistency. Imagine your bath tub full of fragrance and foam. Aromatic candles burning slowly and blending the air with mild scent. Rolls of colorful towels put on the side of the tub, accompanied by a range of bathing brushes.
No, this is not a spa that I am talking about! This is something you can easily recreate at your home, given you have the right concoction of aromatherapy essentials. To create a bath mush that you can mix with your bath water, simply make a mixture of a quarter cup of aloe vera gel, honey, powdered milk and rock salt. Add 2 teaspoons of Jojoba oil and 5 drops of essential (select from Tangerine, Lavender or Marjoram) oil. Blend the essential oil of your pick with one ounce of carrier oil of your choice and your bath is ready!
Sounds like an exotic potion, doesn’t it? But if you carefully look, it is basically made out of healthy ingredients that you would easily find around you in nature. You may find it a little cumbersome to make all these arrangements but trust me, once you’re inside the bath tub, you will thank me for having told this to you!
Here’s is a great tip. Shhh – don’t tell it to everyone! Want your stimulating bath to last even after your bath ends? Once you’ve wiped off your skin with a towel, take one tablespoon of pure olive oil, five ounces of water, six drops rosemary essential oil on fresh rosemary (if easily available). Put this in a spray can and drizzle lightly over your moist skin. Take a deep breath and swing away like a fresh daisy. Don’t blame me if you start turning heads on the streets. Say goodbye to stressful days!
Have there been times when you have ended up spending a bomb on a spa therapy treatment straight after work because you have been super stressed out? Well, ladies, get ready to stash that cash back into your pocket! Get introduced to Eucalyptus oil – an effective analgesic which is often used as alternative stress relieving medicine for muscle, nerve and joint pain.
For some extraordinary results, blend 3-4 drops of Lavender essential oil with a spoonful of base Eucalyptus oil and dab it on a cotton to the affected area on your skin, just before a bath. If you have been having screeching pain on the shoulder or back due to long hours on the computer, or knuckle pain due to excessive typing, this concoction will work wonders. This is aromatherapy’s answer to the Bengays and Voltarens of the world.
Sneeze your stress away
I promise to change my name if you tell me that you’ve never been driven crazy because of a running nose, a headache or an unflinching cold. Stress is not just generated from being overworked or from having a disturbed relationship. It can also come from mild health disturbances from the body. That’s what happened with me one day. My work efficiency was reduced to just 25% when I had a runny nose. And who comes to my rescue? Aromatherapy, you bet!
For relief from viral diseases like cold, flu, nasal congestion or cough, use a mixture of stress relieving Ravansara, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree oil. Mix 10 drops in 1 tablespoon of carrier oil and massage upper chest and back. They help fight viral infections and support the immune system.
For strong nasal congestion, stir up a mix of Eucalyptus, Rosemary, Lavender and Tea Tree oil. Again, mix 10 drops in 1 Tablespoon carrier oil and massage upper chest and back. It will lift up your spirits from a dull day by loosening congestion.
If you’re currently in the habit of taking steam to keep flu in control, that’s great. To make it more long lasting, if you add 4 drops of Sweet Eucalyptus, 4 drops of Scotch Pine and 3 drops of Lemon to it, then this vaporizer concoction will be strong enough to drive your flu away for months. An extra cautionary advice, if you’re making this vaporizer for your kids, use Eucalyptus Smithi – a mild element especially for children and the elderly.
Burn your stress away
Ever thought burning a candle could be stress relieving? If I said that to my six year old son, he would say, “Mom, that’s a magic candle!”. But this is aromatherapy’s special gift for us. These candles look just like regular candles, but are made from essential oil blends. These candles utilize the therapeutic properties of these oils and burning them slowly diffuses these oils into the air, which eventually benefits you, when you inhale it.
Soak yourself in the world of massage oils, mushes, bath salts, teas, diffusers, inhalers and various other aromatherapy applications. I’ve just given you my pearls of wisdom on how to relieve stress through aromatherapy and have a great all round well being. So, the next time a friend talks about aromatherapy being exotic, let her myths go for a toss!