Mental Health freaked me out. Seriously, I didn’t understand it, didn’t want to understand it. I fell victim to the stigma and that is embarrassing for me to share. The only thing I can do now is offer myself the grace to know that that was before and this is now.
Now everything is different.
As a health advocate and a holistic one at that it is impossible to NOT lean in and learn about mental wellness. It is not at all what I expected. As it turns out I have a pretty intimate relationship with it. I’m affected by it daily and am surrounded by it’s requirements every single day both professionally and personally. I certainly have much to learn and won’t claim to comprehend the deeper levels but I do know the most important thing…
Mental Health cannot be separate from physical health or spiritual health.
Mind, Body and Spirit are impacted by one another so in an effort to improve or balance one area you will inevitably create a response in the other two. It’s a powerful consideration. When you move your body for example you directly impact the spiritual and mental aspects of your wellness. Conversely when you spend time in meditation or in nature to clear your mind you will receive a positive response in the physical body. It’s a three for one so any effort to care for yourself has a three-fold reward system.
As I’ve learned about mental wellness I’ve discovered tools that every single person has access to and every single person can use for their overall health. This quick list offering is really diverse in its capabilities. The science of each goes deeper than what you might think and is certainly worth digging into if it piques your interest even a bit.
1. Essential Oils
CPTG certified oils are my #1 go-to for mental wellness support. If you can breathe you can use these tools effectively. Take the lid off and take a deep inhale, that’s all you really need to do. OR, place a single drop in the palm of your hand and then cup over your nose for a “scent tent” experience. The olfactory system (your sense of smell) is 1000x more powerful than your other senses. Immediately you will notice an impact and because our minds are anchored deeply to smells you will soon learn how to care for your emotions by selecting an oil to match your needs. This will happen intuitively so no need for a lesson on that. Diffusers are a nice addition to your aroma approach to mental well being so maybe down the road you add a couple where you like to hang out most.
If you’ve convinced yourself that you can’t meditate because your mind won’t settle then think again! You’re actually perfect for this! Meditation is not about clearing your mind. It is more about observing your thoughts and without judgement or attachment allow them to move through you. It is natural for your mind to wander and in a situation where this is occurring a lot you could simply think or say the word “thinking” to help identify the wandering thought and let it move on. It also helps to find the place where you notice your breath the most significantly. For example the cool air being inhaled through your nostrils and warm air exhaled through the nostrils. Or some people notice it mostly in the rise and fall of their chest or shoulders. Wherever you notice the breath makes a great place to focus your attention while meditating. Even spending ten minutes in this quiet, uninterrupted space is a beautiful way to disrupt the negative thinking or chaotic feel to your day. This is the key to creating a new path for your thoughts and emotions to travel. There are app’s that can certainly help you get into this habit until you’re ready to pursue it without an aid. A few that come to mind and can all be found in the app store are:
You probably guessed this one right? The benefits are endless and the discovery of how it impacts your mental well being will impress you. Yoga is extremely individual and I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to know that whatever style you practice, whatever intensity suits you best, whether it’s in your own home or a fancy studio downtown...your practice is YOUR practice. Specifically, it is important to recognize that while guidance is being offered to flow into various postures you might notice yourself needing or wanting to spend time in a pose. Remember your body is inseparable from your emotional and mental self so when you move yourself physically you may be stirring thoughts and emotions. My favorite places to practice:
● Align and Shine Yoga https://www.alignandshineyoga.com/classes-2/
● Laura Kerr Yoga http://laurakerryoga.com/
● Bridgewater Yoga http://www.bridgewateryoga.ca/
Mental Wellness has become the key topic in my holistic health business because I now understand that when we are not feeling optimally in our minds we cannot process our life with the ease we deserve. I am grateful for wisdom in this area and while I have so much more to learn I’m open to it. The stigma is no longer something I subscribe to and I find myself relating to people on much deeper levels.
I will circle back to mental wellness in a future blog. There is a tenderness to this topic that I cannot fully express yet but look forward to sharing down the road a bit. Until then, I will honor the topic that affects us all through collaborative efforts with an epic group of professionals and our Virtual Mental Wellness Retreat. The first of it’s kind will kick off November 2020 and then again January 2021. Applications are now being accepted for the January experience. Click here to become part of it. Or visit Leotree.com and request a sample of a CPTG essential oil to support your mental wellness goals.
Mental Wellness Retreat 2021 application: bit.ly/Joinusin2021