Dad told me that is was ok to have strong feelings. “Feelings are fickle,” he said. “Sometimes they are like loud booms of sound coming from your gut, and other times they are like whispers in your throat.” He understood me. All Dad had to do was wink and hold my hand to let me know I was not alone in being a highly sensitive person. He told me being sensitive was like being a fine-tuned guitar. I was responsible to make sure my strings were in tune, so I could share my song with others. After living decades with these emotions, I also have learned to be aware when I start feeling other people’s feelings and doing their emotional work. That is an unsafe place for me. I use essential oils to help feel centered and calm when either my or others’ feelings overwhelm me.
“To thrive, as an empath, you must learn ways to avoid taking on the energy, symptoms, and stress of others.” -Judith Orloff
Essential Oils for Empaths
It’s helpful to keep a few blends on hand for those strong emotional times. Consider blending Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata var. genuina) or Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanioides) with Lavender (Lavendula officinalis) or Rosewood (Aniba rosaeodora) and use either Palmrosa (Cymbopogon martinii) or Neroli (Citrus aurantium var. amara) for calming. Ylang ylang is effective in calming down the heart when anger or emotions take over, according to Gabriel Mojay, a leader in acupuncture and aromatherapy. Vetiver can affect the amygdala, which is the part of the brain that houses memory and emotions. It calms the central nervous system and can improve breathing. Lavender soothes and blends easily with these other oils offering a relaxing and uplifting aroma. Palmrosa is a good choice when feeling nervous and insecure. Mojay states palmrosa is excellent for relieving feelings of exhaustion and tension. Lastly, Neroli’s floral scent can uplift and balance emotional pain. It has been used to decrease stress and assist with moving repressed emotions. Remember to let your health care provider know you are using essential oils for well being.
To cope with overwhelming feelings, dilute three of the above-mentioned oils in a 2% to 3% solution in 15ml. of jojoba wax or vegetable oil with one teaspoon of Vitamin E as an antioxidant. Place 2 to 3 drops of the blend right above the belly button and 2 to 3 drops over your heart. Inhale the blend deeply with three long breaths and notice how you feel after using this soothing blend. Remember, regular deep breathing helps to move emotions.
“Vetiver helps to process grief and I have found it to be very steadying in times where life feels very choppy or empty.” -Elizabeth Ashley
References: Ashley, Elizabeth, (2015). Vetiver: An Ayurvedic Medicine: How to Meditate and Heal The Physical Body Using Medicinal Plants and Essential Oils For The Mind Body Spirit (The Secret Healer Oils Profiles Book 1) (Kindle Locations 760-761). Build Your Own Reality. Kindle Edition.
Mojay, Gabriel, (1997). Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit, Rochester, Vermont: Healing Arts Press.
Orloff, Judith, (2017). The Empath’s Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People. Sounds True. Kindle Edition.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29535280 Neroli, Lavender and ylang ylang were blended together to help clients undergoing a coronary angiography. This blend was not effective before the procedure but afterward for at least four hours.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25024731 Randomized controlled trial of menopausal woman found symptoms were lessened when neroli was inhaled.