Trust me, I get it.
Having either depression or anxiety is bad and when you’ve got both life can suck a lot.
I mean, if the sheer inability to get out of bed doesn’t make you feel useless, the fear of getting out of bed and setting off an incomprehensible chain of negative events is sure to do it.
& the reason I said I get it, is I’ve been there.
Thankfully not to that extent, well not recently (but that’s a whole other story).
& even on the days when I feel like I’ve woken up to witness the world imploding even though I have no idea why, & even on days when there’s a reason like other day when President Trump tried to set us on a course to WW3…) I am able to quickly right myself and get back into the game of life with a big old smile on my face.
While yes, I am lucky enough now to be a psychologist and have a massive amount of techniques to call upon to help me out of a funk, the vast majority of these only work when you brain is already working.
& this is where essential oils come in.
They do not rely on my brains ability to wind itself up and ‘get into the groove of feeling good’.
Instead they take over and force my body to start doing things behind the scenes to the good feelings flow to me.
& depending on how you choose to use essential oils this could happen as quickly as 30 seconds or take as long as 20 minutes.
(In case you’re wondering, that is correct, I’ve not accidentally written seconds and meant hours as in the case of many medications. Actually, most antidepressants need about 4-6 weeks to really get in your system…
Check out my other post ‘how essential oils work on the brain’ for the science behind how & why they work)
How should I use them to feel better in 30 seconds?
OK, just wait one second.
Depending on how mentally, emotionally and physically unwell you are right now will inhibit your ability to ‘feel’ better in 30 seconds.
Physiological changes will happen and put things in motion, in the background in 30 seconds but if you are off the charts with mental illness right now then you’ll probably not feel better, just not feel as bad…
I know this seems like I’ve literally negated on my word but hear me out.
Essential oils are not a 30 second quick fix to living mentally healthy.
They are a massively useful tool which affects your physiology and allows you to slowly move up the happiness pyramid (without doing too much work), so that you can then do the psychological work and make the necessary changes which will enable you to overcome mental illness.
& remember, in the grand scheme of things, any small increment in how we feel is a giant leap towards living a life full of fun, laughter and happiness.
Especially if life has been rubbish for months, even years.
OK, I get that life doesn’t magically alter in 30 seconds but how do I change my physiology to set the wheels in motion
Ah, now, this is an easy one.
You simply sniff.
Take a deep breath whilst smelling the oil and allow it to do whatever it needs.
Our nose has a unique connection to the amygdala (the part of the brain responsible for emotional management) and when we smell something it affects the way we feel (good and bad).
Have you ever changed a very unpleasant babies nappy, thought you were going to vomit and then genuinely felt a little rubbish afterwards?
When you catch a whiff of a certain scent are you instantly taken back to a happy memory and then you can’t help that sneaky little grin which creeps onto your face?
Essential oils go one step further than just this little jiggery pokery with memories and our gag reflex.
Essential oils contain different constituent properties which trigger your brain and start a physiological chain reaction.
For example., smelling lavender produces serotonin (your happy hormone).
When you’re struggling with depression & anxiety, simply sniffing lavender is like being flat broke and stumbling into a Leprechaun’s hide out.
It really is that powerful.
Of course, if you want really see the benefits, try popping 1-2 drops of lavender in the palms of your hands and then cupping your hands over your nose and mouth and inhaling deeply (through your nose). This way you get the 30 second boost (aromatic use) and the 20 minute slow release (topical use).
Is it just lavender that’s helpful when you have depression & anxiety
But it kinda depends.
Even in my practice I see so many people hung up on the label of their illness they forget to look a little deeper and find out what specific symptoms they’re struggling with.
Specificity is key.
Lavender is definitely the ‘go-to-oil’ when you just don’t know where to start because it is an antidepressant and a sedative. The antidepressant boosts your mood combating the depression and the sedative keeps you chilled out helping you stave off anxiety.
But, if you’re struggling with your energy levels then you’ll also want something like peppermint or lemon which are energising.
To make things a heck of a lot easier for you I’ve listed the oils which are ‘symptom’ beneficial rather than ‘label’ beneficial.
Simply scroll through the list and anytime you find a symptom of your depression & anxiety, check out the oil(s) which are going to help.
#spoileralert many of the oils do multiple things and will be repeated which is amazing for you because there’s a lot less to remember!
Essential oils for anxiety and depression (by symptom) - the list
(please note, some of these cross over between the mental illnesses I have separated them out to where they are ‘more common’ e.g., mood swings happen with both but are a key part of the depression diagnostic criteria whereas they’re not for an anxiety diagnosis).
Essential oils can be POWERFUL so be careful!
Start slowly, using 1-2 drops every few hours (topically) or by putting 2-4 drops in a diffuser & having it run in the background, & just see how you get on.
Unfortunately, like everything, not all essential oils are made equal so if you are after an essential oil which is going to positively affect your psychology and physiology make sure you look for ones which:
Look, there's no problem using an essential oil which doesn't tick both of the above boxes, if it smells great and helps lift your mood just because your house smells good just remember, that they won't be helpful at actually creating cellular change.
Or rather, not very effectively, or consistently.
I love essential oils and they help me (& my clients) cheat their way to a better, healthier and happier life every day (without having to do any heavy lifting).
If you are excited by the prospect of sniffing a bottle and shifting your mood then use the button below to book a free heath check with me:
Or, dive straight in and grab the oils you need from the company I trust* using this link: Buy Essential Oils
Have an amazing day & here's to cheating our way to a life we want to live :D
x Katie x
* I am an affiliate of doTERRA essential oils and will receive a small commission on any essential oils sold through this link.