So, this just recently happened!
This could have happened anywhere at a time I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to notice it. I could have missed it. But, I didn’t. It happened right in front of me in my neighborhood as I looked down to check my speed. So, I pulled over for a pic.
And, then, I immediately thought “100,000 miles in the rear view mirror.”
There was either a country song in there or a blog. I chose blog.
I often see life in metaphors, signs and symbols so, for me, this was huge milestone moment that definitely captured my attention. It actually felt more momentous to me than when I turned 50.
Here is how I understood that message.
“Where is my perspective on this journey?”
Am I focused on the miles behind me? Am I fixated miles ahead? Or, am I mindful of this moment?
My wisdom teachers and healers remind me the past is over and the future has not happened. What we have is the present.
We have no power to go back and change the past. To live in the past means we can’t get ahead in our healing. The future hasn’t yet happened. To live only for the road not yet traveled can create distress. Lingering in the past, I can become stuck in fear and anger bringing my spirits down. Looking too far to the future, trying to control for things yet unknown, can lead me to feel anxious and worried.
When I am fully in the present, I feel at peace. It is here where I am inspired by what is happening now, to express my purpose and potential that was always there regardless of what might have been, or what might yet to be.
And, yes, like most folks I do need to often remind myself to come back to the present. For a girl who had previously lived for the future, and has some hauntings still tied to her past, it can be difficult at times to remember to simply be here now. And, when I forget, my mind creates distress that can create stress in my body as we discussed in “Take a Breath and Cool Your Jets.”
So, I practice mindfulness. And, I truly need the practice.
Many have heard of mindfulness, but may wonder what it is all about. It is really a simple concept, and one of the simplest explanations I have found is the following:
There are many ways to practice mindfulness. But, a simple first step is to awaken to the present by stimulating our senses. This is where aromatherapy can be truly supportive in our efforts to return when we feel ourselves drifting overlong in our past, or our future.
Just the other night, I ate a Godiva truffle while watching TV and reading. And, after I finished it, I realized I had actually not been truly aware of it. A Godiva truffle for gosh sakes! What a waste of a gorgeous sensory experience. But, I had another tucked away. And, the next night, I did nothing but eat the truffle. I closed my eyes, I inhaled, took a bite, felt the texture it on my tongue and really tasted it. Oh my goodness, what a totally different treat.
Are we doing the same with our use of aromatherapy?
Are we dashing around taking quick hits of this or that essential oil to solve or soothe and issue? Or, are we really inhaling and savoring the scent like the fine distilled essence that it is?
Employed as the true sensory experience it is meant to be, aromatherapy can support our efforts to be more mindful by stimulating our sense of smell to awaken our mind, body and spirit to where we are in this moment. Just think of the everyday wisdom we share in “stop and the smell the roses,” or “wake up and smell the coffee.”
Here are two blends that are helpful for me. I find essential oils that are stimulating to awaken our awareness, and those that are grounding to anchor us to the sense of being present in the moment. I would encourage you to get out your favorite oils and take a sensory tour through smell to find which ones awaken and ground you.
The ratios are scaled for an inhaler stick because I like to keep them with me when I feel I have drifted too far away for too long. You can also reduce the ratio to suit your diffuser, or make a blend and add a drop to aromatherapy jewelry, or you might even prefer to wear it as a personal scent with the oils you choose.
Awakening and Stimulating Blend
6 drops rosemary
6 drops peppermint
3 drops lime
Grounding and Quieting Blend
6 drops basil linalool
6 drops bergamot
3 drops sandalwood
As we head into the season of summer road trips, what is your perspective?
A glance behind can be healthy to see how far we’ve come and to learn from where we have been. And, having an eye toward dreams and plans for the future is both healthy and fulfilling.
It is when we become stuck in those forward or reverse gears that we can stall out traveling this highway of life missing the scenery, missing the signs and missing the living happening now.
So, if like me, you need to practice being present, pack your favorite inhaler for reminders to be mindful on the go. It is an opportunity we give ourselves to consciously live in our most optimal place of wellbeing.