Thursday, January 23, 2014

Using Flower Essences and Aromatherapy to Create an Energetic Shield

Well, this is a blog post I thought I'd never write. I mean, "energetic shields". . . how woo-woo can you get?!! I know I can get really out there but I'm also pretty much an educated intellectual type so talking about the most esoteric part of my practice and my life doesn't come easily in public even though in private spiritual counseling sessions Paul and I have helped people with this many times.

Okay, here we go. If you are very sensitive to the influence of others, particularly if your job (massage therapist, psychotherapist, nurse, teacher, social worker, family caregiver) requires you to help people through challenging problems, health or mental health issues, you most likely have had the problem of taking the problems of your clients home with you. You worry about them too much perhaps, have a hard time relaxing after work, or even get sick or find yourself mirroring their problems in yourself. If you get adequate supervision as a therapist you might have good support to process what these clients bring up for you but many people in the helping professions don't even realize how much they might be soaking up the distress of the people around them.

In our spiritual counseling practice Paul and I teach our clients how to healthfully release what they bring home and learn to become less vulnerable, more grounded and effective while they are doing their helping/healing work for others. Generally speaking, if we do the healing work we need in our own lives other people's stuff is less likely to stick. But there are also multiple energetic techniques people can use to become less "sticky" and to cleanse themselves energetically after the fact. We teach a variety of methods.

I also created a flower essence aromatherapy formula that is extremely effective. I originally created "Inner Strength and Protection" as an unscented flower essence-only spray for my own use. The first time I used it I was shocked at how quickly and viscerally I felt the energetic effect. Pink and Golden Yarrow are the main flower essences used in this formula. The Flower Essence Society says Yarrow works by "tightening up the aura" where it is too diffuse and vulnerable. When I first read this I had no idea what they meant. But I was in a very vulnerable state when I tried it and it seemed like the flower essence took my very spread out aura (the self outside my skin) and literally sucked it back inside me. I know this has got to sound bizarre to anyone who isn't familiar with energy healing or similar such work but I have no idea of how else to talk about it. And it was a bit shocking to experience it. But it made an immediate and very calm-inducing difference.

Since then I've used this formula at various times with effective but less obviously dramatic effect. The very interesting thing about flower essences is that they work most obviously when you need them most (assuming you have picked the right one). As you heal, the less intensely you'll feel the effect. And if you don't need that particular formula anymore you won't notice any difference at all.

Years later I made an oil-based version of this same formula for my Mama Love flower essence aromatherapy business. And given that at that time everything in my product line included essential oils I added Yarrow essential oil along with Patchouli and Sandalwood. So far so good.

But last year I was guided to add flower essence aromatherapy sprays to my line and, as of today, Yarrow essential oil will no longer be included in the spray versions of this product (although it will still contain the necessary amount of Yarrow flower essences). I make the sprays with distilled water and organic vodka and that works quite well, generally speaking. Except for this one—because Yarrow is a surprising color blue and will not dissolve in water and vodka. I used to warn people not to get freaked out if dark blue droplets float in their spray. "Just shake it up really well before use. . . and imagine that the problems of your clients could just bead up and be shed like water off a duck's back and the beaded-up droplets of Yarrow in your formula are demonstrating how that is done (and what it can do for you)." Oh yeah, great advertising copy except for one thing: it doesn't look good on the shelf, if you don't shake it up it will stain, etc.

So how am I going to "spin" this decision? No issue here: In product design as in life you have to set appropriate boundaries. Does someone's behavior cause too much pain and misery? Just say "no"! No, you don't get to "follow me home". No, you can't call me on the phone after hours. No, I'm not going to let your problems occupy so much space in my consciousness or in my life. I like you, I care about you, but I can't let you do this to me. Yarrow, you get to be in my products if you are colorless and mix in but if you refuse and continue to stain everything you touch, I'm sorry but I can't allow it any longer.

It's about inner strength and protection: the strength to lovingly set limits and keep yourself healthy and safe.

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