EOs for Healthy Lifestyle Habits — Kick Bad Habits
By Caryn Gehlmann
Are you starting to think about the need to embrace healthy lifestyle habits? Good for you! Changing habits isn’t easy. Letting go of something we’ve been doing for years, even if deep down we know it’s for the best, can cause emotional, mental, and physical stress. Can aromatherapy really help if you’re trying to change a habit like smoking, sugar or caffeine addiction, a sedentary lifestyle, alcohol dependence, and drug abuse?
Yes! Aromatherapeutic essential oils can help you kick those bad habits to the curb and help you replace them with healthier habits. However, aromatherapy isn’t magic. It’s really just one tool in your arsenal. So if you have a serious addiction that is impacting your health, it’s always a good idea to get the support of your healthcare provider, friends, and family.
Aromatherapy can be used to support you as you navigate through the stress of a big change — whether it’s letting go of a bad habit or starting new healthy lifestyle habits.
Smell is the least understood of all our senses, but it is known that it is 10,000 times more sensitive than taste. Aromas enter via the nasal cavity but it’s our limbic system that stores and then interprets the emotional significance of an aroma. This is why an essential oil can instantly trigger a behavioral response in our body and why certain aromas put us on guard while others calm us down.
Essential oils can be used to promote physical, psychological, and emotional balance. When you’re releasing an unhealthy habit at times you can experience anxiety, agitation, depressed mood, anger, irritability, tiredness, inability to sleep, over-thinking, and lack of mental clarity. There are many essential oils to support you through these challenges so you don’t give up on yourself!
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all aromatherapy solution for breaking bad habits. I encourage people to experiment with different aromas and find the one that’s most calming and balancing for them personally. However, here are a few recommendations:
- Smoking is known as one of the toughest habits to break. Studies have shown that Black Pepper essential oil can reduce the level of nicotine craving. If you’re trying to quit, this article by an ex-smoker might be helpful, Essential Oils and Aromatherapy Tips to Help Quit Smoking.
- If you’re dealing with food cravings, Peppermint essential oil is a favorite. For many, inhaling the aroma of peppermint interrupts the craving sensation while uplifting your mood and mental alertness.
- If you’re looking to get motivated with regular exercise read my blog, Essential Oils for Energy & Motivation to Exercise.
If you’re not sure where to start with aromatherapy but know you could use some mental and emotional support, e3’s Habit Release Blend is a good option. I designed it to be a balancing blend that minimizes stress, empowering you to intentionally change your routine or behavior. e3’s Habit Release Blend contains the following essential oils:
Balsam Peru: Emotional weakness, anxiety, tension, stress, mild depression.
Clary Sage: Nervous tension, mild depression, anxiety, stress, sleeplessness, emotional discomfort, lack of sense of well-being.
Frankincense: Restless mind, anxiety, tension, stress.
How You Can Use Aromatherapy to Kick that Bad Habit to the Curb
1. Start your day off on the right track. After showering, while your skin is still wet, put 1-3 drops of Habit Release blend in the palm of one of your hands and rub your hands together. Quickly and evenly spread the essential oil over your legs, arms, and torso. Avoid sensitive skin areas. For maximum skin hydration and to seal in moisture, apply cream, lotion, or body oil directly to damp skin.
2. Have an aromatherapy inhaler with you so when you’re tempted to give in to a bad habit you can inhale a calming aroma instead. You can put Habit Release Blend, or any other essential oil you find helpful, in your inhaler or on a tissue, and inhale the aroma. Pause and inhale again and give yourself a moment to reset and reconnect with your commitment.
3. Change your environment with a new aroma. This is a great way to replace odors you’ve associated with bad habits and create a whole new smell that reflects your new healthy lifestyle. Mix 30-60 drops of your blend of essential oils in 4 ounces of water in a spritzer bottle. Shake well before each use and avoid getting the mist into the eyes.
Please let us know if you have any questions for our team of clinical aromatherapists. We want to support you in your endeavor to establish healthy lifestyle habits. You can also download e3’s guide, “Listen” to Your Nose – An Introduction to Aromatherapy, to learn about how to find the best essential oil for you personally.