06/29/2012 07:39 am ET Updated Aug 29, 2012

Aromatherapy as a Positive Life Influence

Aromatics have been prized for centuries for their therapeutic, spiritual and aesthetic benefits. Today one need not look far to find products offering the benefits of aromatherapy. In fact, it is often confusing to determine what products or essential oils are the most beneficial and effective.

True aromatherapy is the art and science of using pure extracts from aromatic plant materials, termed essential oils, to address a specific layer of our health and well being. Utilizing a holistic framework, we search for balance within our physiology and psychology -- including our emotions and our spirituality. To individuate further lavender (Lavendula angustifolia) is often referenced for its ability to soothe many of the bodily systems (e.g., digestive, muscular, respiratory), calm the mind and bring a state of tranquil balance to the emotions. True aromatherapy supports the body to activate its own innate healing ability.

The correlation between aromatherapy and stress management is powerful. Scent is perhaps the most evocative of the senses. Due to the proximity of the nose to the brain, and specifically the limbic system, which holds memory and emotion, we have the ability to shift our mood in the moment. Essential oils like lemon and rosemary are excellent, particularly when combined for memory and focus. Holy basil is energizing and excellent for mental clarity. Jasmine and ylang ylang are touted for their aphrodisiac qualities. Sandalwood is great to settle a nervous nature.

Aromatherapy is a supportive process to neutralize old patterns of trauma and dysfunctional behavior by gently clearing old emotions and mental associations and creating new positive affirmations and experiences. Through using scent and intention we can quickly and easily influence our mental-emotional terrain and therefore our overall health and well being.

Turn Around Exercises: Turn a negative emotion or experience into a positive. When an unwanted emotion or pattern arises, try gently inhaling a blend of the following oils for a minute or two, focusing on the positive affirmation to create and solidify a new healthier memory in the limbic system. Then, continue to use that blend whenever you want to access the new positive experience.

Anxiety: Breathe in lavender and frankincense and affirm -- "I am calm and capable."

Depression: Breathe in blood orange and ylang ylang -- "I choose health and joy in body, mind and spirit."

Overeating: Breathe in lemon and lime essential oils -- "I am in control of my body and my life."

Mentally scattered: Breathe in lemon and rosemary -- "I am clear and focused."

Fear: Breathe in sandalwood and patchouli -- "I am safe and whole."

Insomnia: Breathe in geranium and clary sage -- "I choose a restful and restorative night sleep."

Daily use of true aromatherapy offers the ability to feel better about who we are as individuals, excavating our authentic selves to experience a greater degree of passion, joy, health and inner beauty. Think about it: The better we feel about who we are and how we live life the more this vital positive nature can overflow into every aspect of our lives -- our families, careers, our homes and every way in which we relate to the world around us.

Blogger's side note: Opus Gaia products that contain some of the above mentioned essential oils are listed below.

Lavender & Frankincense: I Am Chakra Balancing Blend
Blood Orange & Ylang Ylang : I Feel Chakra Balancing Blend
Lemon & Lime & Rosemary: I Can Chakra Balancing Blend
Sandalwood & Patchouli: I Belong Chakra Balancing Blend
Geranium & Clary Sage: Smooth Seas Aromatherapy for a Stress Free Life

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