I’m an expert in relaxation. From being a corporate consultant to working one-on-one with my massage and life coaching clients, I have had the opportunity to perfect the art of relieving stress, and I’m excited to share with you what I’ve learned.
I must say that of all the different products and tools that aid in relaxation, lavender is one of the absolute best things you can use.
Lavender is a beautiful purple flower whose scent has the power to relax you no matter how stressed, frustrated, or anxious you might be.
The reason I love lavender is that it helps you relax even when you can’t consciously make yourself relax. In today’s world, relaxation has gotten a bad rap. Although in theory, we would all love to lay on the beach and soak up the sun, in practice, we stuff as many events, to-do’s, and activities into our days as we possible can. We rarely give ourselves time to inhale, exhale, and just be.
I think subconsciously, we feel guilty when we’re not doing and producing in every moment. I’m all for productivity, accomplishment, and striving toward goals, but not to the point of burn out and stress, which eventually lead to disease and debilitation.
We must relax. Our health depends on our ability to rejuvenate ourselves. This helps us to enjoy life more. When we slow down, not only to our body restore itself physically, but we get access to more mental, spiritual, and emotional fortitude.
By strategically using lavender, we can enable ourselves to relax and recharge naturally. I love lavender because once you use it, relaxation becomes effortless! And I completely support easy ways to introduce self care into your life.
There are several ways to use lavender and experience it’s benefits.
Essential oils are a highly concentrated liquid distilled from plants. These oils contains the “essence” of the plants and is the key component to alternative healing methods like aromatherapy.
Essential oils have been used for centuries due to their medicinal properties.
Lavender essential oil has been used throughout centuries for it’s sedative effect. It also has been noted for it’s ability to relieve tension headaches. If you have never used it before, I suggest starting only at bedtime until you see the effect it has on you.
I also suggest using it only in it’s purest form. There are plenty of skin care products that are starting to “use” lavender, and I use the word “use” loosely. Many of the products use a synthetic form of lavender that does not offer the same benefits. Any time you have a question whether a product uses real lavender, read the ingredients and see if lavender or Lavandula latifolia is listed. These are natural forms of lavender. If a product list lavender fragrance as an ingredient, then it uses a chemical form that is too overly processed to have any beneficial effect.
(for more info, visit organicfacts.net or read The Aromatherapy Bible: The Definitive Guide to Using Essential Oils)
7 Ways to Use Lavender
You can purchase lavender oil or lavender flowers at your local health food store in the vitamins and supplements section or order it online. (Here’s a link to my favorite brand of the essential oil.)
Here are seven ways you can use lavender to benefit from it’s calming effect:
- Put 2 drops of the oil in your hands, rub your hands together, place your hands over your nose, and take 3 very deep breaths.
- Create an eye mask with lavender flowers. You can do this quickly and inexpensively by getting a clean, preferably unused sock, and filling with 1-2 cups (depending on the size of the sock) of flaxseeds or rice and equal part of dried lavender flowers. If you’re good with a sewing machine, you can create an lavender eye mask from scratch, using the same products, equal parts rice or flaxseed and lavender flowers.
- Place dried lavender flowers in a bowl as a natural potpourri. You can place this mixture on your night stand or next to your bed for deeper and more relaxing sleep.
- Place a drop of lavender oil in each of the following areas: on each wrist, behind each ear, and on your temples on each side of your forehead. Not only are you surrounding yourself with the scent, you’re also allowing it to stimulate certain acupressure points, which will help lift your mood.
- Place 5-10 drops of lavender oil into 8 oz. carrier oil like almond or olive oil or shea butter and keep it on your desk. You can massage the mixture into your hands for 3-5 minutes. The massage part of this procedure is especially important as it helps the oil to absorb into your skin and blood steam. Once the oil enters the body, it continues to calm the central nervous system and assist in the production of happy hormones. As a added bonus, it also softens the skin.
- Put 25 drops of lavender oil and 8 oz. of water in a spray bottle to make a room spray. Keep this mixture handy at home, work, in the car, or wherever you want a quick and easy stress reliever.
- Place 20 drops of lavender oil in 1 cup of sea salt or epson salt. Dump the salt and oil mixture in a warm to hot bath tub and take a nice and relaxing soak.
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