- Put on your favorite oil for relaxation. Our favorites are in the graphic at the top of the page. Try different oils - even those that smell like cat pee (Cedarwood to some people), or dirty socks (looking at you, Valerian!) The smelly oils can be just as effective on the bottom of the feet as on the back of your neck or in the diffuser. From this point, you have about 20 minutes for the oil to ping pong through every cell in your weary body.
- Empty your brain. Writing down tomorrow's to-do list will not only reassure your brain that you will still get to those items without forgetting anything, but it allows your mind to rest. Put this list in a safe place for use the next time you're working.
- Get as comfortable as you can. Maybe you're in a Humvee in the desert, or perhaps you're riding cross-country in a car or plane, or maybe you're lucky enough to be in your own cozy covers - whatever your situation, find the more comfortable position you're able.
- Sink down in. This part may take a little practice. But it is the key to this process. You're going to empty your mind, and imagine one of the following two scenarios. Which one of these I use depends on my mood - both are equally effective. For the first, imagine you're in a soft, fluffy cloud, and that you're sinking down into it. As you sink down, feel each part of your body relax more and more. Start with your head and face, move down to your neck, shoulders, arms, chest, abdomen, hips, thighs, lower legs, feet - each piece needs to relax and grow heavier and heavier as it sinks down into the clouds.
For the second, imagine you're at the top of a flight of neverending stairs - they just go down, and down, and down. Αs you walk down the stairs, count backwards from 100 and feel each part of your body getting heavy.
Come back in a few weeks and tell me how it's going! If it's working well for you, share this post to help those in your life who need a little more REM.
HISTORICAL USES OF WINTERGREEN
Wintergreen leaves have long been used for its ability to relieve the pain and inflammation associated with rheumatism. Wintergreen leaves were used traditionally by Native Americans and early American pioneers to make a tea used to treat “dysentery, fever, headaches, rheumatism, sore throats, and toothaches.” Both the Mohawk and Iroquois used wintergreen for its pain-relieving qualities. Also, the berries of the wintergreen were eaten raw or cooked in pies by the Native Americans.
Peppermint was first listed in the London Pharmacopoeia in 1721. In modern times it appears in the British Herbal pharmacopeia as a remedy for intestinal colic, gas, colds, morning sickness, and menstruation pain.
HISTORICAL USES OF SAGE
From 742 AD to 814 AD, Charles the Great ran a reputable medical school in Salerno. In this school, sage was one of 100 plants grown on the property. It was said that he appreciated sage most of all and that even today, it is mandatory to be grown at all monasteries. It was known as the “Salvation Plant” originating from the world “salvarem,” which means “cure.” It was frequently used as a decoction on wounds to stop bleeding, for ulcers, and as a tea for sore throats and hoarseness.
Sage has a very long and rich history due to both its medicinal and culinary uses. In 812 AD, sage was one of the plants deemed so important that Charlemagne ordered it planted on German Imperial farms, no doubt due to the lucrative trade business as well as for its medicinal popularity.
In ancient Rome, sage was considered to have substantial healing properties, particularly helpful in the digestion of the ubiquitous fatty meats of the time, and was deemed a part of the official Roman pharmacopeia. The herb was used to heal ulcers, to help stop the bleeding of wounds, and to soothe a sore throat. The Chinese used sage to treat colds, joint pain, typhoid fever, and kidney and liver issues.
HISTORICAL USES OF OREGANO
In the middle ages, oregano was commonly used for medicinal purposes. They would chew the oregano leaves as a cure for many ailments such as rheumatism, toothache, indigestion, and coughing fits.
During this time, Oregano also made the journey to China. It was also used for medicinal purposes in this region. The Chinese people believed it helped with fever, vomiting, and upset stomach.
During the Elizabethan era, oregano was used for just about anything. It was used to encourage good luck and good health. It was used in spells for happiness, tranquility, luck, health, protection, and letting go of a loved one.
The medicinal uses of lavender date back to 2500 BC. The ancient Egyptians used lavender as a preservative and fragrant perfume. The word Lavender is from the Latin word lavare - which means “to wash”. For centuries lavender has been used for skin ailments. Infusions of lavender were historically used to soothe insect bites, sunburns, and cuts and burns. Queen Victoria was a vocal admirer of the disinfecting properties of lavender and expected her royal residents to use lavender water and distilled oil because she favored it so highly.
Until 2006, Dorado Azul was recognized only as a weed in it’s native Ecuador. Young Living Founder D. Gary Young gave it it’s the botanical name of Hyptis suaveolens after analyzing the chemical makeup of the plant.
A native shrub that grows wild along the southern coasts of Australia and Tasmania, kunzea was used for centuries by native cultures. The kunzea plant, with its bulbous tops and whimsical blossoms, is commonly referred to as “White cloud.”
The extracted Kunzea essential oil has comparable properties and uses to Tea Tree oil but offers a more pleasant aroma and milder sensation when applied topically. It contains a high level of alpha-pinene and eucalyptol, so it works to help soothe fatigued muscles and reduce the appearance of blemishes. When diffused, it helps create a relaxing atmosphere and creates a refreshing respiratory experience.
HISTORICAL USES OF YLANG YLANG
Historically, Ylang Ylang has been used in both the East and the West. In the Philippines, where the flowers grow naturally, ancient healers would make salves and ointments to treat cuts, burns, and insect and snake bites. In the Molucca Islands, people first used the oil as the main ingredient in Macassar oil, a hair pomade that later became popular in Victorian England. In Indonesia, the flowers are spread on the bed of newlywed couples as they are considered to be an aphrodisiac. Ylang Ylang was thought to be an ideal plant to use for PMS.
HISTORICAL USES OF ORANGE PEEL
People have used citrus fruits as a source of medicines for thousands of years. Herbalists have used the rinds as medicine for numerous maladies throughout history.
For hundreds of years, herbalists have used citrus peel to improve digestion, relieve intestinal gas and bloating, and resolve phlegm. This peel acts primarily on the digestive and respiratory systems.
HISTORICAL USES OF PATCHOULI
Patchouli herb has historically been used in the major medical systems of the world. Traditional Chinese and Ayurveda healers prescribed patchouli for both external and internal use treatments for colds, nausea, diarrhea, headaches, and fever. In India, patchouli leaves were historically used as an insect repellent. Patchouli was thought to be both cleansing and fortifying to the skin and was commonly used to help reduce oil on the skin.
HISTORICAL USES OF TANSY
Tansy has a long history of use. It was first recorded as being cultivated by the ancient Greeks for medicinal purposes. In the 8th century AD, it was grown in the herb gardens of Charlemagne and by Benedictine monks of the Swiss monastery of Saint Gall. Tansy was used to treat intestinal worms, rheumatism, digestive problems, fevers, and sores.
During the Middle Ages and later tansy was used to help women conceive and to prevent miscarriages. In the 15th century, Christians began serving tansy with Lenten meals because it was thought to have the added Lenten benefits of controlling flatulence brought on by days of eating fish and pulses.
Tansy was used as a face wash and was reported to lighten and purify the skin. In the 19th century, Irish folklore suggested that bathing in a solution of tansy and salts would cure joint pain.
Today, tansy is still a component of some medicines and is listed by the United States Pharmacopeia as a treatment for fevers, feverish colds, and jaundice.