Sunday, November 20, 2016

Flower Essences with Aromatherapy for Post-Election Stress

Star of Bethlehem
A lot of people are going through post-election stress! If you're feeling anxious, having a hard time sleeping or focusing on other aspects of your life, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! For one thing, I'm right in there with you. But therapists are reporting that almost all their clients are talking about nothing else and old clients are coming back for extra help.

People with PTSD are particularly being triggered. Women just "saw" their rapist elected president or their uncle who molested them as a kid. Muslims have just had their worst fears realized and were already feeling traumatized throughout his campaign. Dreamer kids are freaking out. A friend of mine who teaches at Chico State has been comforting terrified Muslim and Latino students who are already experiencing racial violence and harassment on campus even if they were born in the United States. Black Americans are rightfully concerned about the selection of overtly racist people like Stephen Bannon and Senator Jeff Sessions to the Trump cabinet and LGBTQ people are horrified by his vice-president Mike Pence. As are women. I could actually fill up this whole blog with links!

Deep breath!

There are starting to be articles, of course, about how to cope with post-election stress. The Atlantic, for example, offered this even before the election was over. And since the election I have seen more and more articles on the subject every day. Cosmopolitan Magazine offers a to-the-point list of suggestions. And there's even some fun suggestions like this one from NPR that suggests that baking muffins might be helpful!

Okay, I imagine you're getting impatient. What about flower essences and aromatherapy?!!

Try these:

Mama Love Support for Troubled Times : for trauma, grief, loss, and pain. When you don't know how you're going to cope and the need for comfort is so great it feels like it would have to come from the Great Mother herself. (The formula that started me on the path of making flower essence with aromatherapy products in the first place.)

Mama Love for Releasing Worry and Fear: my best-selling formula of all time! And the one I'm using right now.

Mama Love for Restful Nights (used to be called Restful Sleep): For deep relaxation before bed but I also strongly recommend using it earlier in the evening as well as before bed right now!

Mama Love for Soothing the Angry Heart: helpful for releasing not only anger but the grief, shock and pain that often lies underneath.

You can get my three top-selling stress reduction formulas as a set for 30% off in my Etsy shop.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Flower Essences for the Trump Presidency for Activists and Those Who Need to Be

I wish I knew who to credit for this photo!
It's been shared so many times I haven't been able to track it down.

It’s a hard time right now in Internet land. Hoo boy! The most understated post from a friend of mine: “I’m feeling negative about the election.” A bunch of people chimed in and one said “Did you really think a woman was going to be elected after a black president? There’s always a pendulum swing!” And he said “This time, I think the pendulum just swung clear off!”

Ain’t that the truth?

I’m not even going to get into the most upsetting incidents that have happened this week with Trump being elected. People are calling for “unity” and for us to “Give him a chance!” But all week long all we’ve heard about is one cabinet pick after another of white supremacists, right-wing extremists, corporate lobbyists and deep Washington insiders—the dwellers of the very swamp he claimed to want to drain. I guess he wanted to drain the swamp so they could climb out and go to town easier! Oh, well, I guess I just DID get into it, but that’s enough.

What do we do now?!!! And, given that this is not a short-term proposition, how do we work with the inner processes that are likely to come up along the way?

Step One: How do you feel now? Are you sleeping, eating, dealing with YOUR physical and emotional well-being? The world needs us well-cared for (nourished, strong and getting enough sleep) to be able to think straight, take action, see what happens, regroup and do it again. And again and again and . . . as long as it takes. 

We all wish this was a short-term project. But even if we somehow win a BIG victory and keep Trump out of office (through lawsuits, impeachment, whatever), we still have right-wingers in the White House and Republicans in control of both the House and Senate with the Supreme Court in extreme danger. Basically, fewer checks and balances than any time in living memory! So, we need an action plan that nourishes us, focuses us and brings us back to the task at hand over and over as much as possible. 

Flower essences we may wish to consider are Angel’s Trumpet, Gentian and Blackberry. 

Angel’s Trumpet: I groaned when I came up with Angel’s Trumpet! That’s the essence for spiritual surrender at times of great transition. Surrender, being the last thing I want to feel. But in cases where we don’t have the BIG picture, really, when we feel a bit lost or even in despair, it’s best to get out of the way and let the impulse to move or create come from a much more centered place. This might mean acknowledging those really painful feelings (sure to trip you up) instead of attempting to leap over them without regrouping first. So surrender to the reality of the moment before determining exactly what to do. Be with what is . . . as a starting place.

Gentian: This is for resilience and the confidence to persevere despite setbacks over the long haul. You need to feel like there’s hope, especially if Donald Trump gets to follow through on some of his most awful plans. Gentian helps you take the long view, knowing that the worst feeling setbacks provide a gift in forcing you to get to know what REALLY needs to be addressed in order to climb back out and win. For example, can we do this WITHOUT the part of the population that voted him in? Not right now! They’ve been held down for too long themselves! But if that’s what we NEED to address (and I can’t be sure of this—he may disappoint them all on his own), you can be sure that in the short-term we won’t win (for long) without dealing appropriately and compassionately with them.

Blackberry:  This is for the ability to take our good ideas and put them into action! We need to be able to formulate intentions (what we need to accomplish) and then walk backwards to determine the best steps for achieving those goals and follow through. So easy when the road is clear but not so easy when there are overwhelming feelings, resistance to the status quo, or roadblocks to navigate in our way. That’s why Angel’s Trumpet and Gentian are included in this flower essence formula, too. 

I made a formula of this for myself and I’m still working with it. My first experience was a sudden upwelling of grief and despair. I had been feeling angry and frightened — in fight or flight mode — but those other feelings were lurking underneath. This is not my favorite type of flower essence experience, but I’ve learned that it is sometimes best to uncover those hidden feelings so I can recognize how they are affecting me and work with them directly. If I force them underground (as I usually do), they don’t get healed. Instead they fester, get worse, and might even rise up in a blind rage and drag me under when I least suspect it (sort of like the white people who say they felt disregarded and forgotten in this election). 

Trust me, I don’t like feeling sad! In fact, at first I felt like I couldn’t do any of the things I wanted to get done either in regards to Donald Trump or in regards to the equally troubling concerns I have in my personal life. (Job hunting, for example, or business expansion or new business or career directions.) The ONLY thing I felt like I had any energy for was housecleaning, a simple concrete set of tasks I knew I could accomplish. So that’s what I got done. 

And I felt better! I actually took an action with beneficial and obvious results. A tiny thing—after all, it’s not going up against the fascist who just took the reins of the free world—but it made me feel better. And today, I had regained the courage to take political action by calling my state senators and the U.S. Oversight Committee to urge them to do their jobs in regards to opposing Trump’s appointments and investigating his financial conflicts of interest. I wrote encouragement to others on Facebook, sent emails, and passed on petitions. And I’ve just written this blog post, too. Nothing earth-shattering here — tiny steps, for sure. But tiny steps, taken by 100s of thousands of other people can do A LOT! 

But only if we take care of ourselves. We’ve only just begun.

I also recommend my stress reduction formulas for Grief, Anger, Fear, Support for Troubled Times or letting go of the concerns of the day so you can get some rest.

Friday, November 11, 2016

The Importance of Comfort and Joy! (Flower Essence Formula, that is.)

Mama Love for Comfort and Joy Flower Essence Formula
When I first wrote about Mama Love for Comfort and Joy for Etsy I joked that it was the one I needed to use more often! It was designed to help people relax, lighten up, enjoy the moment and have more fun. And -- for that reason -- I never have taken this formula very seriously! Oops.

I take it seriously now because it has been doing me a lot of good!

It contains Larch, Zinnia, and Rock Water flower essences and I always believed it was for
increased feelings of self-confidence and spontaneity, childlike humor and playfulness, and for increased capacity to flow with events and enjoy them. And it is, but I assumed too little about it.

I originally described this as being mostly for people, like myself, who slip into patterns of being way too serious, hard on myself, even workaholic. I was brought up with a severe work ethic which counteracts the joy a person ought to expect in a life regardless of what one's paycheck is. But this is a way more significant formula than just being able to loosen up and have more fun (although it is great for that). No, this formula has made such an obviously significant difference in me having more positive and light-hearted expectations that I no longer go to bed terrified at night, fearing for my future! I'm no longer using my Releasing Worry and Fear formula  at night so I can sleep. In fact, when this effect first started to take hold I started to worry that maybe I was going to lose the drive to work so hard and put myself in jeopardy! Ha ha, no! I still work hard. But I can put the work down now and sleep at night, I worry far less and laugh more often. It helps me let go of the need to control the future (which is an illusion anyway), notice the funny side of life, and relax enough to enjoy the ride.

Friday, November 04, 2016

Is There a Problem with Ready-Made Flower Essence Formulas Other than Rescue Remedy?

Yes! Of course there is! Flower Essences are not a one-size fits all solution to generic problems! On the other hand, even Dr. Edward Bach recognized that there are many occasions when a one size fits most remedy like Rescue Remedy is good to have around.

As a flower essence practitioner and spiritual counselor who has based all my work on staying in integrity as much as possible (hence my small bank account, she says with a frown), it is no small deal for me to go against the conventional Bach practitioner training on this. In fact, that's why my business started with flower essences added to essential oils in jojoba and then infused with Reiki for topical use. I figured that if you were the person for whom the flower essences chosen were not the ideal pick, then the essential oils and Reiki certainly would fill in the gap.

But as time went on, I felt I should add flower essence only spray formulas to my shop and then started to add conventional dropper bottle formulas in. Why? Because people don't have the time or money to consult with flower essence practitioners as much as they used to anymore. And when the right flower essences are chosen they can do you a lot of good!

I, of course, have offered flower essence consultation and custom flower essence formulas all along. And I more recently added a listing for that in my Etsy shop. That IS usually the ideal way to use a flower essence only formula and it is what I recommend. But after 13 years with many repeat customers I can confidently add that ready-made flower essence formulas combined with essential oils and Reiki was an awesome idea! And I also confidently recommend my ready-made dropper bottles for those who feel it would fit the situation at hand. I ask for guidance and both dowse and use my training to pick those that would be best for the average person looking to address their problems using this modality in the normal way. If you are not familiar with flower essences, this is probably not the right approach for you.

Flower Essence for Increased Patience

This blog post won't seem like it's about patience at first . . . but be patient with me! I'll get there!

This is how it started. I wrote:

It's really hard to get things done sometimes. So many distractions. Should I do this or should I do that? The problem really being that I don't necessarily want to be doing anything right now, I just think I ought to! How to listen to my heart when my heart and my head don't agree? My head says "Get this work done!" My heart says "I don't wanna!" And my bank account says "I really should do something, right?"

This is getting to be a common problem so I thought I'd check my guidance for a flower essence to break the spell.

Corn Flower Essence was chosen: for my soul's desire for spaciousness, freedom really, the desire to be free from the confines of modern life experience! Big time. Combined with a need to learn how to manifest properly on this plane, the human plane of existence. Sad, sad, sad. Those are the feelings. So I continued with the healing required and came up with: Corn flower essence combined with Impatiens (for Divine timing instead of forced timing) and Larch for feeling more positive about the outcome of whatever I do so I won't drag my feet so much. And that, not long ago, was the same as what I was guided to create for my next flower essence formula, Mama Love for Increased Patience!

But, but ... I don't think I'm talking about patience here unless it's patience with process (getting more tedious things done such as the items on my list). Or patience with not being in control of my life experience 100% (I do have to get things done or I won't succeed at my true heart's desire as a human -- making more products, for example). Or how about patience with being human? I'm not always so patient with that -- pushing forward when I really need to rest, not wanting to stop to eat, not wanting to get up and exercise, stuff like that. Pesky human things!

Of course, then the Libra part of my brain says "what if my real problem is laziness?!!!" Ah yes, it wasn't Libra who spoke up just then. More likely her father scolding lovely Libra who'd rather take a nap! What does lovely Libra really need to hear? Of course you'd rather be free! Who wouldn't? Just picking flowers, eating chocolate, taking naps, sure! That's also what Impatiens is for. For proceeding at the slow pace of the moment because I'm tired from working too hard, at least in my mind: Donald Trump this, Donald Trump that, Hillary? Oh @#$%! Dakota Access Pipeline. Climate change, war. What else is on my mind? What isn't? And there's no time! We have to deal with it NOW!

Well, next week some of this will be over. Somebody will be declared the next president. The rest of us will have to wait four years to elect someone else. There'll be opportunities for taking action even while we're waiting. But some things are just going to take their own sweet time. Better get used to it.

Mama Love for Increased Patience? Might as well give it a try.

UPDATE: (a few minutes later) I did try it and my first impression is WOW. Incredibly grounding! (I didn't know I was ungrounded.) And I DO feel much more patient. Like maybe I'll have some pumpkin pie and THEN get something done. Like, why not?!!!

Wednesday, November 02, 2016

Healing Flower Essence Aromatherapy Gifts for Everyone on Your List

Well, okay, I'm exaggerating. It's possible that Uncle Fred wouldn't care about this or Aunt Suzie or . . .  But if you have a massage therapist or natural healer on your list, one of my new boxed sets could be an awesome gift! Organic, Reiki-infused blends of either flower essences  or flower essences enhanced with essential oils (as a spray or oil).

One of My Favorite Sassafras Tea Blends

Sassafras was the first edible native wild plant I was taught to identify as a child in the woods near my house in Massachusetts. It often has three different shaped leaves on one plant, many in the shape of a mitten. It is also the plant I recognize as the reason why I am a plant healer today, as the person who introduced me to it said the Native Americans in the area used it for many medicinal purposes and I was particularly fascinated by that.

But I don't tend to use it for medicinal purposes myself. I like the taste! Colonial settlers brought this plant back to England where it became popular as a beverage mixed with cinnamon. I like it that way, too, with a touch of honey and 1/2 and 1/2. But the following recipe is my favorite way to drink it of all. You'll find all the ingredients in my Etsy shop.

Rocking the Roots Tea
Use equal parts of the following ingredients (1 tsp each for a pot)

Put all the ingredients in a tea strainer or tea ball. Add hot water and steep about 5 minutes. I like to add just a little honey (Licorice is already sweet) and a spot of 1/2 and 1/2.

I've tried multiple variations of this. Dandelion makes it more coffee-like but I find it too drying for my constitution. Hibiscus is interesting and somewhat tropical. Vanilla, ginger and nutmeg were worthy additions as well. It might be great as chai with less (or no) Chicory.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Surfing the Waves with Rock Rose Bach Flower Remedy

Whoa!! Have you ever seen the monster waves at Mavericks? 50 foot waves are not unheard of. Only the bravest -- or most foolish -- attempt to ride them and not everyone survives.

There are times when our lives can feel that scary. And people, either because of past conditioning or circumstances beyond their control, often need to surf emotional waters that bring them to a state of panic or intense anxiety.

Rock Rose brings people into a core of safety within — grounded, calm and secure — so they can react more positively, respond most proactively, and find their footing in shaky territory.

I highly recommend the use of Rock Rose. I have benefited from it so much that I make use of it in three flower essence formulas I make as well as flower essence with aromatherapy blends.

My most popular formula with Rock Rose in it is Releasing Worry and Fear. You can find it as a flower essence dosage bottle, unscented flower essence spray, a spray enhanced with essential oils for external use only, and in my oil formulas with essential oils (suitable for massage, body oil or bath). A purse-sized oil formula is available as well as a variation that can be used like a perfume.

I also use Rock Rose in a flower essence spray designed for pets who have recently suffered the loss of a caregiver. But there are times a person might suffer a loss like that, too, and it's appropriate for them as well.

And one more: one of the newest additions to my line, Calm Focus, uses Rock Rose to help calm people prone to overwhelm and inability to concentrate due to too many distractions. That one is also available in multiple forms: dosage bottle, flower essence spray, scented spray, scented oil or purse-sized scented oil.