Essential oils not only support the physical body, but through their scents provide powerful support to the mind. Anxiety, stress or emotional imbalance find relief in the use of essential oils. Learning to use essential oils for mindfulness will enhance your practice and provide valuable mental health support.
Welcome to Mindfulness Monday! Where we learn some easy ways to be more present “in the moment” at our jobs, in our homes, with our families and friends.
Learning to recognize God and what He has for us in each divine moment He offers. We acknowledge the belief that God is with us always.
We confess His presence is available to us, lifting our spirit and helping us with power and grace. Learning the art of “stillness” so we can hear His voice and view ourselves, others and our surroundings through His eyes.
Essential Oils for emotions
Essentials oils work on the olfactory system of our bodies; our sense of smell. When you inhale these oils, they enter your bloodstream via your respiratory system.
This triggers sensory neurons that quickly move through the limbic system to the brain. The limbic system influences memory and emotions. This simultaneously activates the amygdala, which alters mood and emotions.
Our sense of smell is the most direct way to trigger our emotions. When inhaling any odor, it travels very quickly through the limbic system. This affects our mood and emotions both positively and adversely.
Essential oils therefore work as therapeutic agents for emotional support.
Emotional Support Essential Oils
- Anger- Roman Chamomile, Ylang Ylang, Rose
- Anxiety- Bergamot, Clary Sage, Jasmine
- Depression- Frankincense, Cedarwood, Bergamot, Lime, Rose, Ylang Ylang
- Grief- Rose, Tangerine
- Irritability- Cypress, Lavender, Rose
- Panic- Clary Sage, Jasmine, Lavender
- Stress- Bergamot, Lavender, Vetiver, Frankincense
- Nervous Tension- Geranium, Lavender, Ylang Ylang
- Sadness- Orange, Rose, Jasmine
how do essential oils support mindfulness?
As I mentioned above, when we inhale essential oils, they enter the bloodstream and travel through the limbic system of the brain. We call this the “emotional brain”. This emotional brain encompasses the amygdala, hippocampus, thalamus, and hypothalamus.
These brain centers connect to the pituitary gland, the endocrine and nervous systems of the body.
As a result, essential oils influence memory, mood, emotion, even balance various hormonal functions of the body. They can stimulate and uplift, sedate and calm, or aid alertness, focus and concentration.
As essential oils are “adaptogens” they normalize and balance rather than simply stimulate or sedate as drugs do. This ultimately results in emotional grounding, inspiration and wisdom.
Essential Oil Effects
My “go to” oils for mindfulness are frankincense, patchouli, cedarwood, spikenard, vetiver and Rose. Both frankincense and patchouli slow and deepen the breath, relieve inflammation and increase mental alertness.
Cedarwood enhances feelings of peace and stillness. Rose oil gently balances, grounds, calms and uplifts moods. Vetiver promotes tranquility and calms restlessness. Spikenard intensifies spirituality, relieves physical pain and is especially effective in the relief of neuroinflammation.
This essential oil may sound familiar to you. In the Bible, Mary, the sister of Lazarus, broke an alabaster jar of costly spikenard and anointed Jesus with it prior to His crucifixion.
How to use essential oils with mindfulness
When we began our journey in mindfulness, we learned mindfulness is thinking with intention. It creates an awareness of what’s going on in the present moment without overwhelm or judgement.
This awareness in turn, helps us slow down the busy pace of our lives. As we slow down, we increase in gratitude and self acceptance, learning to regulate our emotional responses.
So far we learned the power of essential oils to calm and regulate the body and emotions. Let’s try combining essential oils with mindfulness and see how they work together.
Allow 10-15 minutes for the total practice.
Sample Mindfulness Practice with Essential Oils
Pick an essential oil or essential oil blend. Tune in to how you are feeling. Use the emotion and corresponding essential oil list above, or use one of the recipes I include below. Apply topically or diffuse.
Find a comfortable place. Whether in a chair, or on the floor, sit comfortably, head free, back supported.
Observe the present. Close your eyes. Pay attention to what is happening now, without judgement. Allow thoughts to arise, but don’t cling to them; notice and release.
Focus on the breath. Use one of the breathing techniques from my “Calming Techniques Guide” below, or simply observe your breath. Try to keep your breathing even or “balanced”. Keeping your inhalation the same as the exhalation.
Focus on the fragrance. As you continue to breathe, bring your attention to the essential oil fragrance. Focus on its qualities; sweetness, sharpness, subtly or strength. What thoughts or feelings arise?
Return to the room. Notice how you feel before opening your eyes. Does your body feel more relaxed? Have any tension or aches lessened? Is your breathing calmer, smoother? Maybe your mind seems a little quieter? Close out your time with words of gratitude or prayer. Open your eyes, take your time resuming your day.
Essential Oil recipes
Try one of these essential oil recipes the next time you practice mindfulness or try one of your own. I include recipes for a diffuser or topical use. Feel free to use these recipes for mindfulness practice or anytime you feel the need for essential oil support.
- 4 Drops of Bergamot
- 3 Drops Lavender
- 2 Drops Vetiver
Place distilled water in diffuser, add essential oils, diffuse on “continuously”.
- 4 Drops Frankincense
- 3 Drops Orange
- 2 Drops Lavender
Place distilled water in diffuser, add essential oils, diffuse on “continuously”.
Tension relief lotion
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/4 up shea butter
- 2 tablespoons vitamin E
- 20 drops Frankincense oil
- 15 drops Patchouli oil
- 10 drops Lavender oil
- In a small glass bowl, combine the olive oil, coconut oil and shea butter.
- Place the bowl in a saucepan with 2 inches of water and place over medium heat. Stir to combine well.
- Once melted and combined, place bowl in refrigerator for 1 hour until solid.
- Beat the mixture with a regular mixer or hand mixer, until it is whipped and fluffy. Mix in the vitamin E and essential oils.
- Put the lotion in a BPA-free plastic lotion bottle or glass jar. Store in a cool place.
- Massage on stiff joints or areas of tenderness and tension on the body.
Anxiety relief massage oil
- 4 Drops Bergamot oil
- 4 Drops Roman Chamomile oil
- 3 Drops Lavender oil
- 2 Drops Clary sage oil
- 2 ounces carrier oil (coconut or almond)
Mix all oils together in measuring cup. Pour into BPA free plastic bottle or glass bottle. Store in cool place. Massage into neck and shoulder area or on bottoms of feet.
essential oils + Mindfulness = emotional well being
Realizing the singular benefits of mindfulness and essential oils is astounding. If you experienced the results of a mindfulness practice, you know the potential of stress reduction.
Additionally, you know the benefit of less reactivity and better emotional regulation. Perhaps you also experienced the healing benefits of essential oils in your life.
However, if you haven’t tried combining essential oil use with mindfulness, you’re missing out! This combination is a powerful tool for emotional well-being.
The ability of essential oils to calm the central nervous system naturally enhances mindfulness. Another great benefit of this combination is the ability for the body to heal physical ailments.
Essential oils also possess the ability to heal the physical body in many ways. The calming affect of mindfulness frees the body to focus on healing.
The combination of mindfulness and essential oils is one of the most powerful ways to experience full body well-being. Try it today and leave me a comment about your experience!
Don’t forget to grab your FREE “Calming Techniques Guide” below to help with your mindfulness practice!