Nature's Fast Track to a Good Mood
I’m not going to lie—it’s been a frustrating week and I’ve been unusually cranky. Nothing major—just an accumulation of little irritations and far too much to do (hello, holiday cheer!), and my inner light has felt like it’s not shining as brightly as usual. In the old days, pre-kids, pre-business, I would have picked up a copy of one of my favorite inspirational self-help books, sat back with a cup of Starbucks for an hour, and found some inner peace. In the modern, mommy/businesswoman era, I need a quicker path to positive energy!
Thankfully we all possess a channel via which we can access joy, contentedness, and inspiration almost instantaneously, and fairly inexpensively. It’s called our nose! Feelings that can take hours, days or even years to conjure up through cognitive restructuring can be accessed almost instantaneously through exposure to a certain smell. When a scent’s particles enter the nose, they follow a pathway to the limbic system, the brain’s emotion and memory processing center. When we inhale a certain scent, the process can circumvent the frustrations of the moment and trigger memories and emotions more powerful than all of our current stressors.
Let me offer an example of how a pine tree helped me to shift my waning energy last night! As a New Mexico native, a former Arizona resident and a frequent visitor to Colorado, I have an extreme affinity for the Southwest. When I close my eyes and go to my “happy place,” there are almost always mountains in the background, a fire burning in the fireplace, and the smell of wood and pine trees. My vision board is a collage of scenes that remind me of our summer trips to Aspen and Snowmass. So, it was with intention that I brought home my new favorite candle from LYB last night, Thymes’ Northwoods Aromatic Wooden Wick Candle, lit the wooden wick, and inhaled some of my best, happiest memories. The loads of laundry awaiting me, mile-long queue of emails, piles of bills and holiday obligations evaporated in an instant, giving way to feelings of groundedness and serenity that are the norm when I’m in Aspen.
Have you consciously chosen your “happy place?” Where do you envision yourself when you close your eyes and need to escape? Take a moment to really dive into that picture: what do you see, hear, and, in particular, smell when you’re there? Sugar cookies and gingerbread? The smell of the sea? The earthiness of the woods and mountains? There are many different means for bringing the power of smell into your life. Some of my favorites are candles, essential oils, cooking, and spending time in nature. At LYB, we’ve carefully curated a collection of our favorite, top-quality candles to appeal to a range of tastes. Scent is very personal, but I will share with you some of my absolute favorites in addition to the Thymes candle I mentioned above. Others I love to burn at home or at my desk include: Voluspa Crane Flower Large Embossed Metallic Glass Jar Candle, Voluspa Goji Tarocco Orange Large Embossed Glass Jar Candle, Capri Blue Mercury Hexagon Candle, Thymes Simmered Cider Copper Cup Candle.
For another type of heavenly sensory experience, LYB plans to introduce Young Living Essential Oils in 2017. If you’ve heard of them but aren’t totally familiar, an essential oil is a liquid that is distilled from the leaves, stems, flowers, bark, roots and other elements of a plant and contains the highly concentrated, true essence of that plant. The chemical composition and aroma of pure essential oils can, via both topical and internal use, provide great psychological and physical therapeutic benefits. Young Living offers some of the purest, highest-grade essential oils in the world, and we’re thrilled to share with you our favorites for a variety of uses, including inhalation, massage, and more. Keep your eyes (or, should we say, nose?) open for their arrival! (And don’t forget that we offer an array of wonderful bath and body essential-oil infused products from SkinLove and Skinny & Co.)
So, next time you feel your internal pressure rising, take a few moments and step into your office, bathroom or bedroom. Light a candle or grab your favorite essential oil product, close your eyes, and take a quick trip to your favorite destination via your nose. A smile is literally one sniff away!