We are not living in easy times. If you are struggling, you are not alone.
Recently, I discussed the troubled mental state of our nation and how people are struggling to find emotional, mental, and physical balance during these trying times. Although restrictions are easing up in our society, the impact of the past months, social unrest, divisions on health care decisions, and losses felt in many areas are straining relationships and negatively impacting overall wellness.
Thankfully, there are natural and holistic means to support brain, bodily, and spiritual health. Naturopathic medicine is a distinct profession that is equipped to offer a whole-person, integrative approach to help fill the gaps for providers of traditional psychiatric care. Naturopathic doctors (NDs) place emphasis on lifestyle practices to assist individuals with regaining resiliency in body, mind, and spirit. They subscribe to naturopathic principles that empower the person, honor the healing power of nature, and weave in the complimentary tools of traditional and modern medicine.
As a naturopathic and functional medicine doctor, essential oils are one of my favorite, accessible, clinical wellness tools to use in my practice. They have been scientifically validated to positively impact mood, cognitive functioning, and physiology. Importantly, they work in alignment with the practice of naturopathy. I use them often to assist my clients in achieving emotional balance and calming the mind-body. I have found them especially helpful for supporting people during recent events.
Due to the current rise and unmet need for mental health support, and knowing that “emotions in a bottle” are legit, my goal is to continue to offer natural and safe, effective options for navigating our daily activities in a more rational, calm, and grounded way.
In this post, I will focus on how embracing the feeling of acceptance can help one move forward through a negative experience. I discuss the misconceptions around this feeling and share what it is, and more importantly, what it is not. I also highlight means to embrace it and preview how essential oils can help one in finding acceptance with more ease.
In a follow up article, I will provide a suggested blend of essential oils to help one achieve this psychological state and some additional links to emotional oils blends that could also be helpful for many people at this point in our history.
Acceptance- The First Step to Moving Forward
During hard times, I was blessed to have a few incredibly wise people guide me through them by teaching me to first embrace acceptance of my situation. After years of struggle, I learned that acceptance is not necessarily an easy thing to do, but a necessity to get unstuck in a pattern or behavior that is not working. This wisdom of the power of pause to acknowledge the truth of an unwanted situation has shifted my life for the better in business endeavors, emotional and physical events, and struggles with relationships.
Many people have a misunderstanding about acceptance, confusing acceptance for approval. This is not the case. Rather, it means facing the reality of a situation to gain clarity and allow for making choices with more awareness.
According to Psychology Today (bold emphasis mine)
A big part of healing and recovering from the painful parts of life is accepting what’s taken place. In order to move on, we must first acknowledge what’s happening now. But, as all of us know, this is much easier said than done. Despite being one of the most important life hacks any of us can master, the practice of acceptance is enduringly difficult.
Where many of us get stuck is that we start out with a warped understanding of what acceptance is and how it works. We think that accepting something means getting over it. But this isn’t the case. Being willing to accept that someone we love has died, for example, doesn’t mean skipping the grief process or seeking to place a silver lining on an obviously dark cloud. It doesn’t mean minimizing the significance of what happened or how you’re feeling about it. It simply means being willing to acknowledge what is, without resisting or denying it.
Failing to accept reality creates suffering where there’s already pain. It creates confusion where there can be clarity, anguish where there can be peace. We don’t accept things in order to change what’s happening, nor do we do it in order to feel better about it. We accept because it’s the only logical thing to do. Whatever is happening is happening; whatever occurred already occurred. We embrace reality because it’s already here, right now, and resisting it won’t make it go away.
Perhaps this is why acceptance has been a cornerstone in spiritual practices, such as Buddhism and 12-step programs. It has also been used as an aspect in mindfulness and mental health applications, as the following article states:
New theories of therapy have been developed with acceptance as the main focus. An example of this is Acceptance and Commitment Therapy or Training, (instead of therapy, to avoid the stigma). ACT helps train mindfulness: an awareness of the present moment without judgment. The individual is then better able to tolerate negative thoughts and feelings (although the judgment “negative” is removed in mindfulness). Finally, the individual behaves according to his/her values. This type of intervention has been empirically tested for depression, certain anxiety disorders including OCD, in coping with delusions and hallucinations in those that have psychotic disorders, and with those looking to handle workday stress more effectively (SAMHSA). (source)
So, how does one achieve acceptance?
First of all, it is less of an achievement, and more of a letting go of an illusion of control. Oftentimes, this is not accomplished in a clear, straight path, but is somewhat messy.
Many gain the release of struggle through self-appraisal, therapy, a process of surrender, supporting people and/or groups, and prayer. Usually, it is in a form of various combinations. Some also find it easier to embrace acceptance with a little olfaction fortification. This is where essential oils for mind-body medicine applications come in.
When my clients tell me that they are struggling or feeling stuck with where they are in life, their health, or emotions, I inform them of how acceptance can be the key to unlock the lack of momentum. It is for these clients I often suggest an essential oil blend to support the process of acceptance. It can be used in conjunction with therapy or any other means that is helpful to the individual.
In my next post, I will review what I look for in an essential oil for acceptance and also provide some other links to previous emotional blends which may be helpful at this stage in our history.
Now, let’s take some action to ignite change!
Write down one area in your life where acceptance could be a healing step and how you will aim to accomplish it.
If it will help you, share in the comments below.
Also be sure to stay tuned for a little smell booster to help you move forward faster.
Mental Health Resources
If you are in need of additional support and professional health, please reach out!
- The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (U.S.) — Call 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
- Crisis Text Line — Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a crisis counselor
- Lifeline Crisis Chat — Chat online with a specialist who can provide emotional support, crisis intervention and suicide prevention services at www.crisischat.org
Other Uplifting Resources
Disclaimer: This material is for information purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prescribe for any illness. You should check with your doctor regarding implementing any new strategies into your wellness regime. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. (Affiliation link.)
According to experts and the World Health Organization (WHO), there is no approved standard of care treatment, cure, or preventative for COVID-19. Supportive measures and containment are in full force as a result. Please see the CDC website and your state’s website for more information and updates. They also state when to contact your physician related to symptoms and travel history, exposures. Please read my more detailed article on this subject here.
This information is applicable ONLY for therapeutic quality essential oils. This information DOES NOT apply to essential oils that have not been tested for purity and standardized constituents. There is no quality control in the United States, and oils labeled as “100% pure” need only to contain 5% of the actual oil. The rest of the bottle can be filled with fillers and sometimes toxic ingredients that can irritate the skin. The studies are not based solely on a specific brand of an essential oil, unless stated. Please read the full study for more information.
Thanks Pixabay and Canva.