The other day, I woke up with what felt like an elephant on my chest. Rudely greeted with anxiety from the very moment I opened my eyes, I fought the desire to roll over and avoid the day altogether. With a tight chest, racing heart and toes I couldn’t seem to keep still, I found myself reaching for the coping mechanisms I’ve been sharing with you. Thinking about 2 Corinthians 1:3-4, the passage that brought this mini-series on, where it says we are comforted in our troubles so that we might comfort others, it seems ironically appropriate that I myself have been struggling with anxiety the past couple weeks. Using my breath and changing my focus, and still feeling stuck, I reached over to my nightstand to seek the comfort of my next anxiety tip.
For the past 7 years, I have experienced the benefits of Young Living essentials oils – and now, I can’t imagine a day without them. Seriously. You can read about how Lavender was my “gateway” oil here, but what I want to share with you specifically is how essential oils help me cope with anxiety. When I am struggling, two of my biggest stressors are sleep (or really, being unable to sleep) and anxious stomach. And thankfully, Lavender and Peppermint are two oils that have worked wonders in both of these areas.
Lavender essential oil
For as long as I can remember I have been a terrible sleeper. Constantly feeling exhausted, and too many sleepless nights caused even the thought of going to bed to bring on anxiety. You can read more about my sleep struggles here, but long-story short Lavender changed my sleep life. With a sweet, floral aroma Lavender essential oil promotes relaxation. Discovering that just a few drops rubbed onto my spine significantly helped promote a healthy night’s rest, Lavender was a huge answer to prayer.
Peppermint essential oil
The impact of peppermint essential oil is no less. If there’s one thing that can give me anxiety it’s the thought of getting a stomachache and having no way to deal with it. I’m going to be real with you – I call it poop anxiety. Go ahead and giggle or gasp at my honesty, but here’s the reality, everybody poops. Besides, I am firm believer that talking about poop with a friend takes friendship to a whole other level. So consider this a milestone in our relationship. ;) As silly as it may sound, the thought of getting sick somewhere where there might not be a bathroom can really heighten my anxious heart. And then, if I dwell on the thought for too long, all of a sudden I have an actual stomachache, which in turn gives me more anxiety. It’s kind of a vicious cycle. I don’t know where it came from or why, but what I do know is that peppermint changed my poop-anxiety world. One of the oldest and most highly regarded herbs for supporting normal digestion, Peppermint promotes healthy intestinal function and gastrointestinal system comfort. Mixing it in water, rubbing a drop on my stomach, or putting a drop on the roof of my mouth has been a life-saver for coping with and preventing an anxious stomach.
So.. here’s my tip
- Buy Lavender and Peppermint essential oil. And if you do, be certain that it is 100% pure therapeutic grade. Sacrificing purity means there are other things in it, and so it won’t work as well. I highly recommend Young Living – and would be happy to teach you how to order.
- Breathe in the scent of your Lavender or apply it topically to promote relaxation.
- If you have a quick onset of anxious stomach (or headache – Peppermint is helpful there too), use Peppermint to support your digestive system. Even breathing from the top of the bottle can be helpful!
I don’t go anywhere without my peppermint, and my lavender never leaves my nightstand. Essential oils have dramatically reduced the impact of my anxiety and my prayer is that they might help yours as well.
If you want to learn more, don’t hesitate to contact me! I’d love to share what I’ve learned.
-- Keep in mind, the information I am sharing is my personal opinion and it should not be used to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Statements from the Young Living website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. --