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Keeping up with the pace of a hectic school day can be draining.  Self-care is of the utmost importance, especially when trying to avoid fatigue and forgetfulness which can be brought on by a heavy schedule or constant demands on your time. Part of self-care should include bringing your vitamins, aspirin, and a thermos filled with delicious, healthy soup to school. Still, this may not always be possible. What then? Would you believe that a few small bottles of oils can assist you in dealing with some of those daily stresses?

Aromatherapy is an ancient healing practice that delivers fantastic mood enhancing results.  It works to safely and effectively alter a person’s mood by using specific smells to stimulate different parts of the brain. For many, it has become a suitable alternative option for dealing with stress. With a few whiffs, your mood transforms from one of dread to delight, or resignation to relaxation.  You may also rub a small amount of essential oil on your wrists or neck, as well as, blend it with other lighter oils like olive and jojoba to prolong use.

Below are some common moods you may feel during the day and the aromatherapy cure to use:

YOU FEEL: If another person asks me a question, I will lose it.


USE: Ylang Ylang, Palmarosa

It’s easy to give up when you are overwhelmed. Use these essential oils to calm your mind, quell feelings of anxiety and feel grounded again.  Those you work with will thank you later.

YOU FEEL: I’m just going through the motions.  What day is it again?

YOU NEED: Rejuvenation

USE: Peppermint

A quick way to feel refreshed is to have a cold shower. Since having a shower at work is probably not an option, use essence of peppermint for a quick pick-me-up that doesn’t require a loofah and towel.

YOU FEEL: What am I teaching today?


USE: Cinnamon, Thyme

We have all had moments where we lose focus and find our brains trying to catch up with the set goals. Either of these aromas can be the antidote for that “brain freeze”.

YOU FEEL: I just need a 30-minute nap and I’ll feel like new again!

YOU NEED: Alertness

USE: Basil, Rosemary

These are common herbs for cooking that can dowonders for the mind when you need it most. Mix a few drops with jojoba oil and dab on your skin a few times a day to be ready for anything.

YOU FEEL: I am very bored with this class.

YOU NEED: Creativity

USE: Frankincense, Lemon

You may want to keep a pen and notepad handy before you apply these essential oils.  Used independently or combined, you will feel the new ideas brewing soon after.  By the way, don’t just expect ideas for work. You may come across some that address other areas of your life.  Lemon essence also helps with performance and concentration.

YOU FEEL: Someone is out to get me.

YOU NEED: Peace.

USE: Juniper, Yarrow

Miss that blissful, all-is-well feeling?  This does the job!  It relaxes you enough to reduce the anxiety by a few notches.

Experiment with one or two of your favourite scents and see how your body responds. Some people are inclined to scents that are clean, and light like jasmine, or lavender.  Others thrive off the sharp scents of basil, and lemon.  Your body will usually lean towards one type of scent over another and your desired mood should follow.

Aromatherapy is a wonderful addition to any self-care practice, but don’t rely on it alone to cure any prolonged sadness or stress.  If you experience long bouts of either, you may need to look more carefully at how you are managing your life.


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By Maryann Reid