Essential oils are truly magical substances with many different uses and properties, but there are certain areas of healing where the efficacy of some of these oils puts them way above and beyond other modalities

One such area is in the management of stress.

There are a few oils in this category that are so good at calming and centering that I consider them to be true heroes.

They work not just on the physical level as the oil absorbs through the skin, but on the mental level too. By the sense of smell, and even spiritually by uplifting the mind through association. There are many ways to benefit from the healing and relaxing qualities of essential oils.

One of the classics of course is through massage where the essential oil is dissolved in what is called a carrier oil and massaged into skin. Some of the best oils for a relaxing massage are Lavender, Clary sage which can have a slightly hypnotic effect; Rosemary and Marjoram which work on the muscles.

It’s always a good idea to test the oil you are going to use either on yourself or someone else to make sure the scent is pleasing because no amount of relaxing lavender for example will relax the person that hates that smell. And there is always an alternative. Massage is just one way to enjoy these glorious healing substances that come from so many sources – flowers, trees and fruits.

When I am stressed out I like to burn a small votive candle in a little diffuser filled with water, on the top of which I put a few drops of peppermint oil.

It’s a light and optimistic scent and it permeates the room with a very light touch bringing everyone up out of the doldrums. Another great technique is to put a few drops of a citrus oil on a handkerchief, lemon or tangerine are good for de-stressing. Though not necessarily relaxing in the sense that they will put you to sleep, like lavender.

I find that optimistic thoughts and good feelings cannot co-exist with feelings of stress and anxiety, so it’s not necessary to always use a heavy hand and bring the poor person into a coma, a light touch with a lovely oil that they enjoy can do the job very nicely.