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Essential Oils Blog

Tag Archives: aromatherapy

What to Buy the Top 3 Bunnies on Your Easter List


Have you stocked your Easter baskets yet? We have!

Easter is April 1 this year, which means it’s time to stuff every-bunny’s basket! We’ve got three great ideas for egg-citing Easter gifts, as well as some very bunny puns:


1. For the baby bunny: KidSafe® Lil’ Stinkers plush

essential-oils-easterIf you’ve been waiting to try out one of our KidSafe® Lil’ Stinkers, Easter is the perfect time to try one out for the Lil’ Stinker in your life.

Coco, PJ and Otis arrive at your door specially packaged for Easter, with a cute card, Easter grass and their own signature synergy, perfect for Easter baskets.

Want to mix and match? You can also buy each Lil’ Stinker’s synergy individually packaged for Easter.


2. For the essential oils beginner bunny: Lemon, Lavender and Peppermint Essential Oils gift set.

Is the some-bunny special in your life just getting started falling in love with essential oils? Get them going with this adorable set of our best-selling oils, packaged in a wooden gift box with an Easter card.

Want even more? We also wrapped Plant Therapy’s Fruits Set up just for Easter. This set is perfect for every fruit lover! Is your bunny’s favorite scent Tangerine, Grapefruit Pink, Lemon or another fruit essential oil?  We’ve got you covered with this set of 6 of our top fruity scents, wrapped and packaged for Easter.


3. For Some-Bunny special: our beloved Bouquet Blend Synergy Essential Oil.essential-oils-easter

Better than a bouquet of Easter Lillies, our Banquet Synergy Essential Oil Bouquet Blend offers the fresh, floral scents of Lavender and Palmarosa, combined with the zesty citrus scents of Mandarin and Lemon, and topped off with the tranquil, soft, woodsy scent of Ho Wood. This synergy is sure to provide a boost of energy and a breath of fresh air to elate the mind of your some-bunny.

Be sure to check out Plant Therapy’s Easter gift shop for more egg-celent gift ideas!

Aromatherapy for Overcoming Overthinking

By Ellen Brenner, Certified Aromatherapist

I’m going to let you in on a little secret …well, not so secret if you know me. I have a tendency toward overthinking. Yep, my mind is seriously an overactive overachiever. And, if I don’t manage my mind, it can border on obsessive, repetitive thinking like a hamster running on the perpetual wheel to nowhere.

For as long as I can remember, my mind has been like a stalker on steroids in certain situations. It races ahead with thoughts that I sometimes struggle to process before it races on to the next. I talked fast as a child, and even now sometimes when I get over stimulated. I have been told this is a result of my mouth trying to keep up with my mind.

In some instances a fast-moving mind has served me well. Fast thinking on my feet was a plus in the corporate world, most especially when I worked in crisis communications. And, seriously, I’m the girl you want in an emergency making excellent lightening decisions with a laser focus.

On a day-to-day basis, though, not learning to slow overthinking can lead to a sense of feeling overwhelmed and overtired.

But, until several years ago, I didn’t know there was a way to slow the flow.

And, then, I attended a meditation workshop where I learned “the mind is like a monkey that has been stung by a scorpion.” (there are many variations on this theme from ancient Buddhist teachings).


That was an illuminating moment. Not only did this accurately describe the inner workings of my mind, but also for so many others from millennia to modern times. And, ancient medicine had already addressed how to control our thoughts rather than letting our thoughts control us.

In this last blog we discussed a type of obsessive thinking that occurs when the mind wanders into worry.

When the “Mind Runs Amok

And, we detailed some simple practices to calm the mind by counting our breath coupled with aromatic companions that may be helpful for dealing with this type of distress.

Continuing that discussion, I wanted to share three other ways I find where overthinking can overtake my mind.


Creative Channeling

One of the things I’ve learned about my hard wiring is that I get super excited by cool concepts. I will then tuck this new notion away in amorphous form for future reference. Then, suddenly, something will trigger a lightening round where all the dots start to connect themselves at super speed and I am then able to perceive the idea in a prevailing pattern.

This process of coalescing into concepts I can now see sets in motion what I call creative channeling, Ideas and information begin to swiftly come together seemingly without effort as I furiously write to keep up with the flow lest the information making itself known become lost.

The upside to this is that it powers my passion and inspiration for writing. There are times when I can write like I am on fire and feel like I am simply a channel for the creativity flowing from fingertips to the keyboard.

One downside is I might find myself drafting at 3:00 a.m., or after I started meditation, because it is always the most quiet of moments that fuels the fire. I end up torn between needing sleep and needing to not lose the moment of creative flow. If I try to sleep, I worry it will be gone and my mind goes on repeat to try to remember.

Here are some ways I work to balance creative inspiration with creating quiet time:

  • Keep a tablet by the bed (paper or electronic) to jot down the notes.
  • Create more quiet time and space during the day to allow time to go with the flow
  • Get to bed at an earlier time knowing  the channeling may come so I can get it down and get to bed.


Persistent Problem Solving

Sometimes a problem presents itself that we just want to get solved. So, we go over and over it in our mind seemingly into oblivion without getting it resolved. And, sometimes, we try to stay a step of ahead of what we imagine may come by trying to solve for the many iterations in advance.

Yet, when we go over and over something without a solution, it can lead us to fret on repeat. A good friend once told me repetitively asking the same question over and over again in our mind, when we don’t have the answer, is like continuing to hit the button on a computer keyboard when the operating system is stuck. You get nowhere, the computer doesn’t have a chance to reboot, and you can trigger a bigger issue.

I have learned if you have gone over many aspects of a problem and don’t yet see a solution, you likely don’t yet have enough information. Here it becomes important to be comfortable tabling the problem solving until you do. And, you have to get out of your own head and own way for the information to come.

Here are some ways I work on balancing problem solving with letting the mind off duty for the moment:

  • Keep a thought journal with you – just a small, thin booklet that is easy to carry in your purse or have on you at all times. Write down the question or problem you have and then let go trusting it is now written and doesn’t need to be held in your thoughts on a persistent basis.
  • Engage in introspective practices that calm the mind so you can hear yourself think. If you are repeatedly in asking/doing mode in your mind, you won’t be ready to be in receiving mode when the information makes itself known.
  • I find that different bits of information begin to come to me like pieces of a puzzle. I write them down even if I don’t know where they fit, just feeling and trusting that they do.
  • For me, eventually, the dots then just begin to naturally connect. Usually, when I am open and ready for the answer.
  • And if you are trying to solve for things that don’t yet exist, as the saying goes, “cross that bridge when you come to it.” Worrying about it now is a waste of energy.


Inquisition Into Infinity

Oh my gosh do I have a mind that likes to know things. I have an avid curiosity and a life-long love of learning. This passion has been a bonus in my professional and personal life due a love of research of inquiry. Knowing new things feeds my mind and my spirit.

But, when you take me as a whole, with the tendency toward all the ways my over zealous can mind overthink as outlined above, this is another area I can wander into the weeds of obsessive thinking.

I’ve noticed this especially with the advent of the smart phone. It can be problematic for a mind like mine to have a mini-computer in the palm of my hand. While I do have everything I need with me to manage my life at all times, I also have the ability to get sucked down a rabbit hole at any given time.

I can be adding something to my calendar and two hours later I am still watching a cooking demo for root vegetables. I’ve learned some really intriguing things, but probably not the best time or with the best use of my time, especially if it just before sleep.

I swear, I was only going to set my alarm and now I see a great video on how to curl my hair. Apparently, this is common as I am seeing more and more articles about our smartphone addiction overall.

This reminds me of the advent of email, especially at the office (yes, I am old enough to remember). At first, we would just get a few here and there. Then, when the concept finally caught on, we started to get barraged. The more we tried to respond instantaneously, the less we got done as all we were doing was reacting to email.

We learned to set aside time to review and respond to email to protect the most productive parts of our day and get our most pressing work done. We checked in the morning, after lunch, and later in the afternoon. In this way we were responsive, but not held hostage. Certainly, there were exceptions for things that were urgent, once we discerned that to be true.

This practice could also be suitable for how we keep connected through our smartphone. Not every notification is urgent and not every interesting item you chance across is important in that moment. This isn’t easy, I know. I am still really working on this. Anything my mind wants to know, at any given moment, I can Google with the flick of a finger and a few taps of my thumb.

Here are some other ways I am working to balance wanting to know now with not needing to know right now:

  • If you get notifications on your phone from various apps, discern if it is urgent or important, or just interesting. If it is urgent, respond. If it is important, decide if it is a priority over what you currently need to be doing. If it is just interesting save it for later.
  • Bookmark, to save posts  on social media to save for later
  • Email articles and recipes and such to yourself perhaps to a  folder of interesting things for later at leisure
  • Create certain times of day when you can go back and pursue the things that piqued your interest sand set yourself a time limit
  • Don’t pick up your phone before bed. Have everything preset for morning (seriously a hard one for a me and seriously a detriment to soothing sleep).


Aromatherapy for An Overactive Mind

The same practice of counting our breaths, as detailed When the Mind Runs Amok, can cut the cord of continuous thinking beyond what’s beneficial.

To accompany your practices of overcoming overthinking, once again, aromatherapy makes an awesome ally. Essential oils excel at supporting the mind, and there are certain selections that are exceptional for repetitive and obsessive thinking.

I’ve combined my favorites into the synergies below with some suggestions for how they may best serve. As always, it is important to experiment so you can experience what works best for you.

Now, that you have had an insider’s look to my overactive mind, if you recognize anything familiar, I hope you find these suggestions helpful on your own journey to slow the flow!

All of these recipes are written as mini-master blends. You can add as written to your diffuser.  To add to a personal aromatherapy inhaler, simply multiply the mini-master blend by 3 for 15 drops total.


Quiet Mind

For when the mind is working overtime running on that hamster wheel to nowhere. This is a great general synergy to take on the go for any situation from sunrise to slumber.

2 drops Basil Linalool Ocimum basilicum

2 drops Bergamot Citrus bergamia

1 drop Sandalwood Australian Santalum spicatum


Fret Free

I like this synergy for quieting the mind before bed. It is especially good for when the wheels keep turning and you need support shifting down for a peaceful slumber.

2 drops Frankincense Carteri Boswellia carteri

2 drops Orange Sweet Citrus sinensis

1 drop Marjoram Sweet Origanum majorana


Zen Zone

I just love this synergy when I need to just let go and drop into the zone for to introspection and meditation. I find it calming, centering, grounding and uplifting. This is one of my go-to’s to help bring me back to balance found in quiet time.

2 drops Bergamot Citrus bergamia

1 drop Blue Cypress Callitris intratropica

1 drop Davana Artemisia pallens

1 drop Sandalwood Australian Santalum spicatum




When the Mind Runs Amok

By Ellen Brenner, Certified Aromatherapist

With a new year, many of us start a fresh set of intentions for improving our health and wellbeing. So, we count steps walked and clock miles ran. We count calories and reps at the gym or laps in the pool. And, some of us measure our BMI, numbers on the scale, or the inches around our waist.

But, what about counting our breath?

Wait. What? Why?

Ok, let me back up a bit.

We often put the focus squarely and solely on the measures of our physical health. But, ehnancing our emotional and mental health is just as important.

If you follow my blogs, you know I am an advocate for the mind, body, spirit connection and the impact it has on our wellness. When our whole being is in balance, we can find our own optimal level of wellbeing.

Our best of  intentions for improving our vitality can be overtaken by our lack of attention to our state of mind.  For a balanced equation in measuring our wellbeing, the mind most definitely matters. In fact, it is actually mission control.

 So, what does this have to do with counting our breath?

When, our thoughts and emotions are out of balance, it can create havoc with our overall wellbeing. The good news is we actually have a built-in mechanism to take charge of where our mind travels. Simply counting our breath can help rebalance to our being. Coupling our breaths with an aromatic companion can create an even more enhancing experience.


When the Mind Runs Amok

Many of us, myself included, have a tendency to let our minds run away with us. I think of it as the mind running amok. Sometimes, I begin to worry or feel anxious solely because I am imagining all that can go wrong down to worst-case scenario for things that have yet to happen. This is especially true if I am about to experience change or make a big decision. Instead of focusing on faith that all will be well, I can “what if this, and what if that” myself into feeling fissures of fear.

Now, before I go on, I want to clear up any possible confusion. We aren’t talking about a deep sense of worry or anxiousness from significant situational, physiological to psychological issues.

Situational issues might include life’s major stressors such as divorce, job change or loss, financial change, a move, death or serious illness and so on. Physiological imbalances may include chemical imbalances in the mind and body that affect a healthy state of mind to the point of debilitating anxiousness, worry or sadness. Psychological issues could include PTSD, phobias or other mental, emotional impairments.

I have dealt with all of these, and while there are things I could do to help myself,  I also needed the help of qualified health practitioners in partnership with my self-care.

But, what if outside of those significantly serious scenarios, we have a tendency toward worry? To imagine worse case scenario when it doesn’t necessarily exist? Can we support a happier state of mind through self-care? 

The Short Answer is “Yes.”

Most of us know if we are “worriers.”

Worry is exhausting on all levels of our being and can diminish our ability to be well.

When we begin to remove worry as a constant source of distress, our whole being has the ability to rebalance and replenish. If left in a chronic state, continued distress of the mind leads to stress in the body, which can take a toll on our mental and physical health.



You can read more about this in:

Take a Breath and Cool Your Jets

But, by becoming aware of our worry when we are in the moment,  we can take control and switch our mind from autopilot run amok to a conscious state where we may steer our thoughts to back to slow and steady.

And, we can do this simply with two natural tools when we find our thoughts tail spinning for reasons not based in our current reality.

Are you ready? Here’s what we need:

  • Our own natural breath
  • Aromatherapy as an amazing ally


Calming Your Mind in the Moment:  Counting Your Breath and Aromatic Anchors

Let’s start with deep breaths and aromatic anchors. We can create a positive association in the brain by connecting a supportive affirmation with a soothing scent to make an aromatic anchor. In this way, we can quickly send a message to our mind that all is well when we subsequently smell the same scent again. This is a great practice to have when you find yourself wandering into worry and need to flip the switch.

First, we want to create an affirmation that is calming to us when our mind in a state of calamity. An affirmation is a positive thought used to replace a negative thought stated in the present tense. I like to use “all is well,” for example, but it is important to use what works for you.

We can enhance this experience by creating a practice combining our affirmation with counting deep breaths. When I was a child, and my emotions became stormy, my mom always told me to take deep breaths and count to three. Naturally, our mothers were right because we now know the deliberate act of slow, deep breathing sends signals to the brain to turn off the stressed state.

Next, we can choose an aromatic synergy that is soothing to us and supports the positive state of mind we are seeking. For this practice, I recommend either adding your synergy to a personal aromatherapy inhaler or diffuser jewelry so it can be with you to whiff when needed.

This is how it would work all together.

  • Choose your affirmation to repeat during times of worry
  • Choose your aromatic synergy to help soothe your senses
  • Create a personal inhaler
  • Use the following deep breathing exercise when needed


An Aromatic Deep Breathing Exercise:

  1. Hold the inhaler under one nostril while gently holding the other nostril closed.
  2. Begin to repeat your chosen affirmation to yourself.
  3. Inhale your aromatic synergy gently, deeply, and slowly down into the lungs, feeling your belly expand, to the count of 3.
  4. Hold a moment.
  5. Exhale slowly, through the mouth, to the count of 3.
  6. Repeat on the other side.
  7. Repeat on each side if desired.


 Suggestion for Creating Your Own Synergy

This is one of my all-time favorites for letting go of worry and bringing myself back into balance, especially when I find myself in a heightened state after the fact, or when I become aware of it beginning to bubble up from below:

Add the following to a personal aromatherapy inhaler:

6 drops Geranium Bourbon Pelargonium x asperum

6 drops Neroli Citrus x aurantium

3 drops Orange Sweet Citrus sinensis


Suggestions for Ready Made Synergies

Worry Free – blended to support a relaxed state of mind during times of tension and anxiousness.

Grounded Foundation — helps to soothe, calm and relax when you are feeling distressed by encouraging a sense of safety and security.


Calming Your Mind as as a Practice: Counting Your Breath and Aromatic Meditation

Because thoughts are things that can have real effect on our wellbeing, it is important to learn to drive our own mind, rather than letting it run amok.  This is where meditation can make a great impact.

You read more about the many benefits to our wellbeing in:

M is for Meditation

When we talk about the practice of meditation, it can create a variety of impressions depending on what you’ve heard or experienced. And, for those of us who are worriers, we don’t want the idea of this to be overwhelming.

What we are really talking about is simply a practice of calming the mind and learning to taking control of our thoughts, rather than letting our thoughts control us.

And, this  practice of calming the mind works wonderfully both as a preventive measure and to  be prepared when we become aware of thoughts heading in a wayward direction.

To keep this simple, here we also use the practice of counting the breath and aromatherapy. Here, again, aromatherapy is a great ally by helping to calm the mind, creating a sense of peace, and opening us to a higher state of consciousness.

For meditation, I like to use my diffuser, but you can also use a personal aromatherapy inhaler before you begin.

Seven Simple Steps to Aromatic Meditation

  1. Choose an aromatic blend.
  2. Find a quiet place to practice. Noise canceling ear phones with soothing music may help.
  3. Start your diffuser (for no more than 60 minutes) Or, inhale from your personal aromatherapy inhaler.
  4. Sit in a comfortable position and gently close your eyes.
  5. Simply focus on your natural breath and begin counting each breath.
  6. Thoughts may bubble up.  Just notice them, let them go without emotion or judgement like they are floating on by.
  7. Return to counting your breath.


Suggestions for Creating Your Own Synergy

I like this particular synergy when I am meditating to calm my mind run amok. I find it centering, clarifying and uplifting to support me in seeking a more clear state of mind.

3 drops Grapefruit Pink Citrus x paradisi

1 drop Lemon Citrus x limon

1 drop Buddha Wood Eremophila mitchellii



Suggestions for Ready Made Synergies

Clear Intuition — helps to quiet the conscious mind, encourage introspection and connect to a higher state of consciousness while remaining grounded in peace.

Meditation Synergy Blend — helps to take you into a calmer, more meditative state of mind.


I hope you find these practices combining counting your breath with aromatherapy as a companion helpful in easing your mind when you tend to wander into a state of worry. To truly enhance our overall wellbeing and vitality, it is important to care for our whole being. So, while you are focused on counting your steps to feel more fit, don’t forget to include a practice of counting your breath to create more calm on your journey toward the most fabulous feeling you!

Aromatherapy and Romance

Check out these essential oil recipes and get ready to open your heart up to some love and romance!

Let’s not be modest — when a man walks past and wafts an alluring cologne, or a woman is seemingly always smelling of an aroma you find absolutely irresistible, it can seem impossible not to notice your sudden change in thoughts and emotions.

“Oh wow! That smells amazing!”

It’s the kind of feeling that causes a husband to get lost in the scent of his wife’s hair, or a woman to bury her face into her boyfriend’s worn t-shirt whenever he is away. These are smells that make you swoon and wish for more.

Some scents are quite simply intoxicating; they can directly affect emotional states and infuse your senses. Because of this, humans have been harnessing the power of aromatherapy for centuries, and it has deep roots in romantic history. Ancient civilizations used fragrances to cultivate desire and influence behaviors. The Egyptians, for example, enjoyed aromatic baths to make a more sensual environment for intimacy.

Cleopatra by Frank Dicksee (1853-1928)

Then there are the accounts of the legendary seductress, Queen Cleopatra of Egypt, that claim she carpeted her throne room floor with rose petals and massaged her body with a custom blend of rose, cardamom, and cinnamon oils to seduce Marc Antony upon his arrival. She would even order the sails of her ship to be doused with the fragrant oils to attract his attention further and awaken passions [1]. Additionally, the alluring characteristics of fragrance are also mentioned in the Bible, in Song of Solomon: “His cheeks are like beds of spices, mounds of sweet-smelling herbs. His lips are lilies, dripping liquid Myrrh” (Song Sol. 5:13 English Standard Version).

History tells us that smell has been long known as a central element of attraction, but what does modern science say?

You probably guessed it: Certain aromas really do work within the mind and body to spark feelings of sensuality and love. This is because smell links to the limbic lobe of the brain and activates the hypothalamus. Since the hypothalamus is the hormone control center, it regulates and stimulates sex drive, energy levels, and healthy hormone productions. According to Psychology Today, “Some researchers think scent could be the missing factor that explains who we end up with. It may even explain why we feel ‘chemistry’ — or ‘sparks’ or ‘electricity’ — with one person and not another.” [2]

Scents can operate so subtly they may be hardly detectable, and even the faintest fragrance can encourage thoughts of positivity and passion. When this happens, your sense of desire is heightened from the positive influences on your mood. If you’re ready to dive into the romantic qualities of aromatherapy, the essential oils of Ylang Ylang, Rose, Jasmine, Sandalwood, and Clary Sage are well-known to add to the desired ambiance. [3]

Or also, try Plant Therapy’s Sensual Synergy Blend, which was created by our Certified Aromatherapists to create an exceptionally romantic aroma. It’s perfect for those more intimate moments with your loved one.

Want a couple more ideas? Check out these recipes and get ready to open your heart up to some love and romance!
Massage Oil

What you’ll need:

What you’ll do:

  1. Add ingredients to a 2 oz. bottle,
  2. Mix well by rubbing bottle between palms
  3. Enjoy this very sensual blend of essential oils with your sweetie!

Beloved Beach Rose

What you’ll need:

What you’ll do:

  1. Use a personal inhaler or aromatherapy jewelry and sniff to experience the aroma.
  2. In a 10 mL roller bottle, dilute to 1% with your favorite carrier oil and apply to your wrists


How do you like to use essential oils to enhance the romance in your life? Enter a comment and let us know!


[1] Moeran, B. (2010). A history of fragrances. Household and Personal Care Today, 6-8

[2] Svoboda, E. (2008, January 1). Scents and Sensibility. Retrieved Jan 20, 2018, from

[3] Worwood, V.A. (2016, November 15). The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy 25th Anniversary. New World Library. Pg. 432

Plant Therapy’s 2018 Wish List Giveaway!


Plant Therapy's Wish ListDuring the month of February 2018, Plant Therapy is giving you the chance to win what you wish for!
Plant Therapy's 2018 Wish List GiveawaySHOP

At, create a wish list and add all the Plant Therapy items you want to shop for. You may create as many wish lists as you’d like!


Let people know which gifts you’d like, via social media or email. Sharing your wish list each week enters you into that week’s drawing.


When you share your list, Plant Therapy sends your friends/family a special coupon code for 10% off to use when purchasing your wish list items. This coupon code is valid for 7 days after issuance and cannot be combined with any other discount.


Each week during the month of February 2018, Plant Therapy will select 2 customers who will win the contents of their list.

To be eligible to win, you must:

  1. Create a wish list.
  2. Share it!

Winners will be announced on Monday from the wish lists created/shared from the previous Sunday-Saturday.

Rules: Customers may create as many wish lists as they choose, but will receive only one drawing entry per week. Create and share a wish list each week, Sunday-Saturday, to be eligible for the following Monday’s drawing. Email for complete contest rules.


2018 Best Valentine’s Gift Idea

The romantic qualities of Sensual Synergy will awaken passions with its exotic blend of floral and woody aromas. Reconnect and reignite the spark of love with the luxurious Marvelous Massage Carrier Oil, a diverse mix of nourishing oils designed specially to pamper the skin through body work.With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, Plant Therapy’s team of Certified Aromatherapists have created a special gift set that is both “Sensual” and Marvelous.”

Show your partner how much you truly care with Plant Therapy’s Be My Valentine Set. Perfect for creating a special, intimate atmosphere for you and your sweetheart, this set includes a 10 mL Sensual Synergy Oil and a 4 oz. bottle of our Marvelous Massage Carrier Oil.

The romantic qualities of Sensual Synergy will awaken passions with its exotic blend of floral and woody aromas. Reconnect and reignite the spark of love with the luxurious Marvelous Massage Carrier Oil, a diverse mix of nourishing oils designed specially to pamper the skin through body work.


This set will leave you feeling flirtatious, ignite your intimacy, and rev up the romance.This set will leave you feeling flirtatious, ignite your intimacy, and rev up the romance.

Marvelous Massage Carrier Oil Blend: Use topically in a circular motion; warm up to create a soothing massage.

Sensual Synergy: Diffuse a drop or two in the bedroom diffuser to set a romantic mood. Dilute to 3% in Marvelous Massage Carrier Oil Blend to promote closeness, or add to body care or bath products.

Then, turn the lights down low and put on your favorite romantic music. The rest is up to you…

From Surviving to Thriving with the Power of Essential Oils

By Ellen Brenner, Certified Aromatherapist

If you’ve followed my blogs, you are likely familiar with my backstory. Unhappily successful executive desperately wants to jump off the rapidly racing treadmill, is too afraid, and literally and figuratively gets run off the road in a life-threatening, life-altering blink-of-an-eye moment. Wakes up, literally and figuratively, to a new reality of re-learning how to move more step-wise through life in search of restoration and revitalization.

 That’s pretty much the skinny. So, why am I rehashing this again? 

Because it has been 10 years since the traumatic event that launched me onto this part of my life’s journey. I mark this milestone as the rebirth of my authentic self. And, truly, it has taken the entirety of that decade to really gain a more profound perspective about this phase of my path.

When we can free ourselves from the muck by re-focusing from the life-altering to the life-affirming, we can shift from surviving to thriving and find our own sense of optimal well-being.

The key to gaining my well-being was getting myself unstuck in order to find my way forward. So, in honor of that process and progress, I want to share what I have learned about getting out of my own way. My hope is that my story helps others who also want to be on their own way after a traumatic event.

 And, here is the short story.

After any type of trauma we can become mired in a mental morass that may keep us from moving forward. When we can free ourselves from the muck by re-focusing from the life-altering to the life-affirming, we can shift from surviving to thriving and find our own sense of optimal well-being.

 So, let’s talk about that.

Trauma affects us on all three levels of our existence: mind, body and spirit.  It rocks our whole being and upends how we know to be in the world. With physical trauma, modern medicine has rendered many miracles, of which I am one.[1] Yet, when we experience a traumatic illness or injury, it challenges the very definition of clinical recovery — returning to our former state of health and functionality. [2]

We contend with acute and chronic changes to our physical state; such as functional limitations; our emotional state, including a sense of loss, fear, anger, stress and anxiety; and our spiritual state, including questions about the very purpose of our existence. And, we may feel challenged about how to integrate these changes into our very core essence.[3]

These are the things I have experienced in my own personal journey. I have also learned they are a commonly shared experience calling for recognition and research in the clinical community in order to better support those who have survived traumatic illness and injury. [4] [5]

When we experience a trauma, we often see our lives as before and after. The thing that happened could be my story if I stopped there. An ending to what I saw as my life before. We see this with folks who define their sense of self by their condition long after the thing that happened.

Moving a step beyond, we can also become mired down in the longer-term aftermath, stopping at the sense of surviving.  What I wanted was to move beyond these first two stages to a sense of thriving. And, it was the thing that happened that pushed me off that perpetual treadmill propelling onto a new trajectory to get unstuck from the muck.

Please understand, while I perceived this perspective early on in my mind, it hasn’t been simply a flip-of-a-switch, but rather a lot of work rewiring into the deep recesses of my being that formerly framed how I lived my life.  For me, that part of my journey has taken me nearly a decade of delving deeper into self-care, self-love, and self-acceptance, to truly let it seep down to the level of my soul.

Getting Stuck in the Surviving Stage.

Because, initially, I didn’t know how to be in my new world, I kept trying to retreat into the old by holding onto my former ways to be who I thought I should be. So, I tried to wrap myself in a super hero cape and carry on. In reality, I was trying to fly with a false security blanket that was not keeping me safe. On the surface I projected a sense of being fine. Sitting just slightly below the surface was a swirling storm of disordered emotions holding back my healing. Here’s just a sample:

Not fully accepting what had happened and what I needed to happen to support my healing: I would push too hard  and too fast to be “before Ellen” and the Universe pushed back delaying my healing through several setbacks. “I don’t have time for this. I need to get back to work.”

A sense of cheating death and potential doom. When every doctor ever looks at my medical history it goes like this: Looks at chart.  Looks at me. Looks at chart again. Looks at me in stunned disbelief. Then, says, “Wow! No one usually survives and/or walks away from that.” Me to self: “Whoa! What the heck? That’s a heavy load and that’s scary.

Which leads to guilt. I did not feel I deserved to fully experience my feelings about loss and fear. “Why me and not others? Others have it worse. I should be grateful and not complain.”

 Then, existential pressure. I felt like I had been given the gift of a do-over and wanted to get it right. As an over achiever,  I handled this like a burden not wanting to mess it up, rather than seeing that experience as a blessing. “Why did I survive? What am I meant to do?” I must make this meaningful.”

So… I just totally disconnected.  My emotions were too messy and scary and I didn’t have the skills to know how to process them. I also did not understand they were part of the package.

I thought I was giving off the vibe of “I’m fine. Really. I am sincerely grateful for what I have and just want to move forward.” However, I learned that I was actually giving off the vibe of numbing out.  Rather than dealing with the mental and spiritual aspects of what happened, I was creating further distress by divorcing myself from what I felt. Because what I felt about what happened was scary and I was the girl who stood on her own two feet.

By focusing solely on my physical needs while neglecting my emotional and spiritual needs, I was creating a fragmentation in caring for my whole person. I was fighting the forces of nature and the factors of my own functional facility. And, I was trying to get back on the treadmill I knew, rather than facing the future.

My fear of moving forward caused me to get worse, not better. This literally caused a  repetitive replay of taking one step forward and two steps back in my functional ability. Treading water. Trying to survive. Wanting more, but not seeing how that was possible. What I wasn’t seeing was how I was standing in my own way, based on what I believed.

And then, the traumatic event finally went from breakdown to breakthrough. But, rather than happening after the immediate injury, it happened in an instant two years later.

In my struggle to push back and perform at previous levels from before, I hurt myself significantly for the second time in two years after the initial accident. It was enough to scare my rehabilitation specialists. The miracle workers had successfully put my body back together three times, and each incident had its own challenges. This time, while I had been slow to grasp the gravity of my situation, I was finally scared straight.

That was my “aha” moment: It was time to seek support for my mind and spirit, as well as my body, so that my whole being could heal.

This is what I learned.

While I wanted to keep a positive outlook, I was not dealing with the challenging emotions associated with the trauma because I believed they served no purpose. I thought they would drag me back, but in actuality, they were causing me to be stuck.

With the help of a gifted healer to support my mental, emotional and spiritual needs, I learned what you believe and what you feel are different tracks of your being. One is an aspect of your mental state and the other arises from your emotional state. When they are not in alignment, it can create a sense of dissonance or disharmony.

Because of my inability to cope, my mind managed to disconnect from the trauma that had occurred, creating a state of dissociation. I wasn’t experiencing my feelings, but they were there below the surface creating significant disturbances.

I learned how to begin to untangle the two. I learned that life-long beliefs could be changed, especially if they are keeping us unhealthy. And, I learned to experience my negative emotions while feeling safe so they could be exorcised.

Perhaps, most significantly, I learned when we try to recover our old life, to the day before the thing happened, we are trying to go backward. This keeps us stuck in the surviving stage, or even relapsing further as I did in the thing-that-happened stage. But, when we choose to reclaim our lives, we can begin to move forward from surviving to thriving.
Moving from Surviving to Thriving

The clinical miracle workers had worked their magic. But I wanted to more fully experience reclaiming my life, even if I moved forward by fractions.

The mind matters. Much of what was holding me back was myself in my own mind. Letting go of negative thought patterns and self-limiting belief systems helps liberate our spirits and better supports the ability of our bodies.

Engaging in conscious wellness has been vital to restoring  whole-being balance. When our mind, body, and spirit are in balance we can better reclaim our lives. Holistic healing arts such as yoga, massage, energy work, acupuncture, meditation and aromatherapy have played a vital role in bridging the span between the limits of functional recovery and the unlimited potential of reaching my own level of optimal well-being.

Like many aspects of tending to our well-being, this has been a practice grounded in awareness and an ongoing series of conscious choices about my mindset one step after the next. And I have learned to call in the professional and personal support as needed all along the way.

The closer I came to mastering my mind, the easier it became to release the shackles that bound me from flying free. My outlook became sunnier, my emotions more centered. Work flowed more freely, and I was able to do more physically.

Where there was once resistance to the changes from fear, there is now more resilience to changes on the go, allowing me to bend and bounce while I re-balance and grow.

But, let me be real here. It has taken me almost 10 years to own my pathway. And that includes the before the thing that happened, the thing that happened, and the after the thing that happened as my journey in its entirety so far.

I don’t want to give the impression “I’ve arrived,” or I have reached “enlightenment.” I am just hoping to leave some lights on for others along the way from what I’ve learned so far. What I can say for sure: Learning these lessons has helped me realize my potential and my purpose and created a greater sense of wholeness and health.

Aromatherapy as an Essential Companion

Today, I am grateful I am able to blend my professional and personal passions with aromatherapy to create a synergy of support for myself, as well as others.

Aromatherapy came into my life many years ago in the “before” part of my journey creating the gateway to accessing natural healing arts.  Since then, aromatherapy has been a constant companion in my self-care. When the “after” came, especially after my “aha” moment, I incorporated aromatherapy in my healing journey, every step of the way, to help bridge that the gap in moving forward from surviving to thriving.

Aromatic essences excel in supporting challenging mental states while soothing the emotions. They can help to ease discomfort experienced in the physical body. And, they can help restore the spirit.  Most significantly, aromatherapy blends wonderfully into all of my self-care and self-balancing practices expanding the essential experience.

Here are just a few links you might find helpful about how to incorporate aromatherapy in your healing journey:

Food for Thought

Take a Breath and Cool Your Jets

M is for Meditation

An Achilles Heel to Healing

What Does Holistic Have to Do With Our Health

What Exactly is Subtle Aromatherapy

Chakra Synergies for Self Care

Essential Oil Well-being: Be Gentle, Be Generous, Be Grateful

New You from the Inside Out

And, here is a synergy to especially support moving forward from Surviving to Thriving

For me, this synergy embodies all the attributes I seek in moving from surviving to thriving. It can be used to support us in letting go of what was, assist us in moving forward to reclaim our lives, and sustain us in our capacity to thrive.

This can be inhaled by placing in a diffuser, or a personal inhaler. Because the scent resonates so deeply with me, I also like to dilute it to 2% in a 10 ml roller ball bottle and wear it on my pulse points to gently waft over me as my own personal restorative perfume.


2 drops Black Pepper Piper nigrum

1 drop Sandalwood Indian Santalum album

1 drop Orange Blood Citrus sinensis

1 drop Peru Balsam Myroxylon balsamum

The intention of this synergy is to help us restore our overall sense of balance and well-being. It helps us to ground, strengthen and replenish our spirits while encouraging a sense of peace, calm and serenity for the mind. It uplifts the heart and promotes a sense acceptance, compassion and  optimism.

It supports the clearing of blocked energy and encourages healing on all levels of our being. And it helps us let go of challenging emotions such as fear, anger and frustration while promoting a sense of  courage, self-confidence and self-empowerment.

From my heart to yours, I wish you peace and empowerment on your journey from surviving to thriving.  May your whole being thrive in the light of your own personal optimal well-being.



Keim, Joni, and Ruah Bull. Aromatherapy & Subtle Energy Techniques: Compassionate Healing with Essential Oils. N.p.: CreateSpace, 2015. Print.

Shutes, Jade. The Dynamics of Blending: A Guide to Blending . Willow Springs, NC: NW College for Herbal and Aromatic Studies, 2011. Print.

[1] The National Action Plan for Cancer Survivorship. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 29 Apr. 2009,

[2] Richomond, Therese S, et al. “Journey towards Recovery Following Physical Trauma.”Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 32, no. 6, 2000, pp. 1341–1347.,

[3] Richomond, Therese S, et al. “Journey towards Recovery Following Physical Trauma.”Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 32, no. 6, 2000, pp. 1341–1347.,

[4] Richomond, Therese S, et al. “Journey towards Recovery Following Physical Trauma.”Journal of Advanced Nursing, vol. 32, no. 6, 2000, pp. 1341–1347.,

[5] The National Action Plan for Cancer Survivorship. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 29 Apr. 2009,

5 Natural Ways to Manage Stress

Natural stress relief is possible with aromatherapy.

As we continue on this pathway toward a new, better you, one resolution that many people are making is: Manage stress better.

This subject can seem a little daunting to talk about because there are so many coping techniques — and what works for one, might not work for others. But hopefully this article will help you learn which essential oils and techniques, together, can help you manage stress and become a better you.

According to the American Psychological Association, “Stress occurs when you perceive that demands placed on you — such as work, school or relationships — exceed your ability to cope. Some stress can be beneficial at times, producing a boost that provides the drive and energy to help people get through situations like exams or work deadlines. However, an extreme amount of stress can have health consequences, affecting the immune, cardiovascular and neuroendocrine and central nervous systems, and take a severe emotional toll”.(2)

When we feel the weight of stress in life we can tend to feel upset, sad, angry, or uptight. We tend to lash out or close off to those we care the most about. That is why we came up with some safe, natural ways to help you manage stress and take care of yourself from the inside out.

Try These 5 Natural Stress-Reducers

Decompress From The Stress

In order to decompress from the stress, take a break from whatever is stressing you out. It might be easier said than done, but here are some suggestions you can use to do exactly that.

  • If you are a stay-at-home parent, getting “away” from your stress can be a little challenging. But you still deserve a timeout if your stress level has hit an all-time high. Grab your personal aromatherapy inhaler, add a few drops of Worry Free, and inhale. Put yourself in the closet, bathroom, or anywhere secluded for a “timeout.” Take a moment to relax and let the aroma take over your senses. Count to 10 (or 20, or 30, or however long you need) and then get back in the game! (Note: This technique works very well for on-the-job incidents, too.)
  • If your stress is created by something that you can’t literally “walk away from,” then just take a moment to pause and shift your focus to something else. Work on a crossword puzzle, do the dishes, or watch puppy videos on YouTube. Add Lavender and Sandalwood Australian to your aromatherapy diffuser as you finish that project on your to-do list, clean the house, or read a book that you enjoy to give your mind a mental break.
Aromatherapy with essential oils, along with activities such as yoga, exercise, and meditation, can help reduce stress.Get Active

Being physically active can really help your overall stress level. 

“When stress affects the brain, with its many nerve connections, the rest of the body feels the impact as well. So it stands to reason that if your body feels better, so does your mind. Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins — chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers — and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress… And conventional wisdom holds that a workout of low to moderate intensity makes you feel energized and healthy.

Scientists have found that regular participation in aerobic exercise has been shown to decrease overall levels of tension, elevate and stabilize mood, improve sleep, and improve self-esteem. Even five minutes of aerobic exercise can stimulate anti-anxiety effects”(3)

To get active, start by applying Energy Synergy Roll-On to your wrists and inhale. This will give your senses a safe, natural boost. Then, do 30 minutes of activity to get your heart rate up. This can include running, a workout routine, walking, biking, hiking, etc. When you have finished, apply Calming The Child Roll-On and inhale. With the endorphins released from your physical activity and the wonderful aroma of Calming The Child, your stressors will feel manageable and you will be ready to tackle your stress head-on.

Laughter is The Best Medicine

Being happy is a great way to reduce stress, and what better way to get happy than laughing? “Laughter is a powerful antidote to stress, pain, and conflict. Nothing works faster or more dependably to bring your mind and body back into balance than a good laugh. Humor lightens your burdens, inspires hope, connects you to others, and keeps you grounded, focused, and alert. It also helps you to release anger and be more forgiving… With so much power to heal and renew, the ability to laugh easily and frequently is a tremendous resource for surmounting problems, enhancing your relationships, and supporting both physical and emotional health.”(4)

To help prepare for a moment of laughter, add equal parts of Bergamot, Patchouli, and Grapefruit Pink to your aromatherapy diffuser, grab a funny movie, book, podcast, or friend and laugh the day away. The combination of Bergamot, Patchouli, and Grapefruit Pink will create an atmosphere that is positive and uplifting, while freshening up the room with a wonderful aroma.

Social Support

When times are rough, grab a friend, a family member, or someone you trust. Lean on them to provide a listening ear. Their love and support can help you deal with your stress. 

Before you head out the door, grab your favorite aromatherapy diffuser necklace and add a few drops of Tranquil Synergy to the pad. Let the soothing aroma work its wonder as it assists you achieve mental relaxation. This will put you in a better state of mind as you chat with your friend, family, or loved one.

Reflect and Meditate

Last, but not least, take some time out and meditate. In Certified Aromatherapist Ellen Brenner’s article “Doing Nothing is Doing Something” she says, “When we can turn off the stress, switch off the mental chatter and let our spirit just go with the flow, we support our body’s built-in mechanism to keep us in a state of balance”. We need to take time for ourselves to do nothing. Relax. Reflect. This recipe from “Doing Nothing is Doing Something” can be used in the diffuser, in a personal inhaler, or added to a cotton ball you place nearby.

Soothing Chai for the Soul (Inhalation Blend)

1 drop Cardamom

1 drop Cinnamon Leaf

1 drop Clove Bud

1 drop Ginger Root CO2

1 drop Black Pepper

You might also like to add:

1 drop Vanilla (CO2 or Oleoresin)

“This restorative blend is intended to support body, mind and spirit coming back into balance, especially after mental and emotional exhaustion, and a sense of depleted vitality on all levels. It is calming, comforting, uplifting, warming, grounding, soothing, stimulating, strengthening and rejuvenating. Helps to promote confidence, personal power, courage and stamina, motivation and intentions. Provides support for immune system and nervous systems and helps to clear blocks in our natural energy flow. Promotes clarity of the conscious mind and helps to connect to spiritual guidance and wisdom”.(1)

Stress is inevitable. But with aromatherapy and these helpful tips, hopefully you can manage your stress in a safe, natural way. Whatever life throws your way, reach for Plant Therapy essential oils and some of these proven stress-beating techniques!


1. Brenner, Ellen. “Doing Nothing is Doing Something.” Plant Therapy Blog,, 22 Dec. 2017.

2. Five Tips To Help Manage Stress. (n.d.). Retrieved January 05, 2018, from

3. Physical Activity Reduces Stress. (n.d.). Retrieved January 05, 2018, from

4. Robinson, Lawrence, et al. “Laughter is the Best Medicine.” Laughter is the Best Medicine: The Health Benefits of Humor and Laughter,, Oct. 2017,

When You Have a Case of the Mondays

Start your week off on the right foot, beat the Monday Blues, and achieve your weekly goals. Let’s face it:  Sometimes the biggest threat to achieving our personal goals is the momentum-blocker known as Monday. It’s the dreaded day after the delightful weekend, and we can often feel uninspired, cranky, or tired. We all know how it feels to have “a case of the Mondays.” Symptoms of this may include:

  • Bad mood
  • Sense of Restlessness
  • A lack of motivation
  • Tiredness
  • A longing for the upcoming weekend
  • Not feeling like you can face the long week ahead
What can we do to beat back the Monday Blues?

Stay on top of these symptoms with essential oils! Plant Therapy’s Blues Buster Synergy is a great option to help ease these symptoms. Here are several ideas that incorporate essential oils to help you come out on top when you have a case of the Mondays:

Start a New Monday Morning Routine

Why not incorporate a new Monday routine into your life? A great way to start your morning to help ease a case of the Mondays is to diffuse an uplifting scent in your aromatherapy diffuser. Blues Buster synergy is an uplifting, bright aroma. Plant Therapy’s team of certified aromatherapists formulated it to increase your sensory and emotional well-being. Starting your Monday off with this aroma will help get your week started on the right foot, so that you can charge into the workweek with a positive mindset.

“Never Miss a Monday”

This is a common phrase thrown around social media, referring to the mantra of never skipping a Monday workout. But you can use this mantra to make sure you look at Monday from a different perspective.

Never missing a Monday can mean:

  • Always set aside time for yourself to work on personal development and growth.
  • Make time for family.
  • Set aside “me time” to focus on something you enjoy, i.e. reading a book, watching your favorite show, cooking something new, etc.

Add Blues Buster to your personal aromatherapy inhaler and sniff before you start the activity. That way, the aroma will be linked to your Monday activity.


Making sure you get a good night’s rest on Sunday night can help your Mondays not seem as daunting. About an hour before bedtime, add Relax Synergy to your favorite body care product and rub on the shoulders. This relaxing massage method will help ease the tension from the day, which will promote a relaxed state and help you unwind after a busy weekend.

Count Your Blessings

Take a moment out of your Monday, add Blues Busters to your personal inhaler or diffuser, inhale, and start counting your blessings. What are you thankful for and what are some positive aspects in your life? With the combination of a mood-enhancing aroma and positive thinking, your “case of the Mondays” will soon disappear as you focus on what you are thankful for.

The Monday blahs can seem like a looming giant, but being proactive with some of these ideas, combined with essential oils like Blues Buster, you can turn Monday into your favorite day of the week! Start your week off right, and make Monday a day to look forward to.

What techniques do you use to break the Monday Blues? Tell us in the comments below! You never know, a suggestion you share may make a huge difference in another reader’s life. We’re all in this together!

Top 8 Essential Oils for Sore Muscle Relief

Essential oils can help provide relief from sore, achy muscles and joints.
Essential oils can help provide relief from sore, achy muscles and joints.
Did you know: The No. 1 most common New Year’s resolution, according to a 2015 Nielsen survey, is to “Stay fit and healthy.”

With weight loss and health atop most people’s New Year’s to-do list, more exercise is essential. The extra physical activity can often lead to sore muscles.

Our New Year New You goal at Plant Therapy is to help you succeed in 2018. That’s why we’ve created this essential oils reference guide to relieving sore muscles and achy joints.

Essential Oils for Sore Muscle Relief

Rapid ReliefNew Year, New You 2018

This popular blend is helpful for sore joints and discomfort that comes with over exercise, aging joints, or that occasional bump and minor injury. It contains warming oils that help with circulation which will bring relief. This is great is a blend with our Aloe Vera Jelly or with a carrier oil or butter. Rapid Relief is one of the pre-diluted roll-ons featured in Plant Therapy’s New Year New You Set!

Black Pepper

Yes, Black Pepper is good for tummy issues and for respiratory congestion. But did you know, Black Pepper is also very helpful for sore muscles? The major constituents in this versatile essential oil, b-caryophyllene and d-limonene, make it a good choice for soothing swollen, sore muscles.

Roman Chamomile

Many people know that Roman Chamomile can be calming to emotions. The great thing about this essential oil is that it is also calming to your skin and body tissue as well. It reduces tightness and swelling, and relaxes those knots that can build up after a strenuous workout or a stressful day.


I didn’t used to pay much attention to Marjoram. I owe Marjoram an apology.  Sweet Marjoram has many attributes; it is supportive to the immune system, it is calming to the mind, it helps with digestion and cramping, it is there for seasonal threats, and of course it is great at relieving body and muscle discomfort and swelling. Good thing Marjoram is “sweet” and doesn’t hold a grudge!


Geranium isn’t just a rosy smelling essential oil! It is a force to be reckoned with in combating discomfort and swelling. Both of our Geraniums, Bourbon and Egyptian can be interchanged and both address sore muscles and even sore joints due to over-exertion. In addition, it helps with skin issues, with mood, and also inhibits the growth of bacteria.

Tension Relief

As a massage therapist, I find this blend very helpful for sore shoulder muscles and tight necks. It can loosen those tight tendons and muscles, and help your neck and head move more freely. Dilute to 2-3% with a carrier oil and have someone massage it into that area for an “ahhhh” feeling.

Muscle Aid

A natural choice to help one feel better after trying to relive your athletic high school days! Muscle Aid was formulated by Plant Therapy’s Certified Aromatherapists and essential oil expert Robert Tisserand. It combines some powerful oils (Wintergreen, Camphor and Pine) to bring relief.

Muscle Aloe Jelly

This is a convenient blend for weekend warriors and many of our customers love it! It dries quickly and goes to work to help reduce the achy soreness that comes from a marathon, an intense gym workout, or playing with the kids.

Do you have a New Year’s resolution to exercise more? Finish a triathlon? Simply be more active? Tell us about it in the comments below, and let’s support one another on our wellness journeys!
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