Use scent to profoundly impact mood, cognitive and emotional well-being


Whether we know it or not, our sense of smell is a powerfully evocative force when it comes to emotion, creative inspiration, ability to focus, a sense of place and time whether it be of home or a foreign territory, and even libido.  We so powerfully associate thoughts and feelings with scent, even if we don’t consciously realize it.

Our ability to smell is just another sense that we can use to our benefit.  The highly associative nature of scent is exactly the reason people want to use things like scented candles and other items in their home.  We all want to experience some form of comfort or well-being and these scents help us achieve that sense we’re looking for.

However, instead of using chemically scented products, think about using natural essential oils in your home, on your pillow or wherever else you might get a whiff here and there.  Plant oils have unique properties and phytochemicals that interact with the area of the brain that controls the olfactory senses and can trigger emotional and cognitive responses that enhance and better our lives.

Get outside and mow the lawn for relaxation, improved mood

Studies have shown that simply inhaling the scent of freshly cut grass (the real thing, not a chemical equivalent) causes an increase in happiness. It produced a sense of well being in subjects who inhaled the natural scents that come from blades of grass after they’ve been cut.

There is actually a chemical in grass that induces feelings of well-being and relaxation. So it’s not just your imagination that a few minutes after revving up the lawnmower you experience a gradually lifting of mood. Grass isn’t the only plant that releases these feel-good chemicals.

Pine trees and other evergreens release chemicals that promote relaxation.  A multitude of other plants, even those considered “weeds” in your lawn also release similar chemicals that waft up to your nose after being cut.

Natural scents that promote concentration, focus and productivity

Rosemary oil has a multitude of benefits beyond the kitchen.  It helps promote a strong memory and sense of recall and helps to increase focus.  It also helps with stress and anxiety, which help you to put your energy into constructive thoughts rather than worry and doubt.

Lemon oil is not only uplifting and energizing once it registers in the hypothalamus and is triggers a sense of well being and energy.  It also helps to clarify thoughts and snap the mind out of stagnation. Other citrus oils such as pink grapefruit oil and sweet orange or neroli oils have a similar effect.  These can be a wonderful tool for enhancing productivity and imagination.

Peppermint oil is another uplifting scent that promotes vitality of imagination and creativity.  Peppermint’s strong aroma helps to stimulate the brain centers responsible for critical thought and gets the creative and energizing juices flowing.

Peppermint is popularly combined with rosemary as a feel-good scent since they not only complement one another aromatically, but they also have similar calming yet stimulating qualities which lend a huge hand in keeping focus and concentration alive which pushing other unproductive emotions aside.

Scents that promote restorative sleep, relaxation

Lavender oil is perhaps the foremost essential oil known for promoting sleep and relaxation.  While the scent of the oil is certainly not for everyone, it is one of the more studied plant oils, and has been proven to be much more than just a placebo effect when it comes to enhanced relaxation and improved sleep.

Clary sage is another oil that helps relax the body and muscles, and to calm the mind in preparation for sleep or a relaxed state.  Clary sage can also smell very pungent to people, and only a tiny drop is needed to release enough scent up through the nasal passages and get the job done.

Chamomile is a relaxant not only when sipped as a tea, but also the oil of various types of chamomile plants act as a relaxant when entering the hypothalamus via the nasal passages.  In addition to relaxing the nervous system, some evidence suggests that chamomile may be able to help lessen headache tension and ease general muscle tension when inhaled.

Danna Norek owns, offering a full line of natural haircare, skin care and body care including a powerful Natural Deodorant, Natural Shine Enhancing Citrus Shampoo and Deep Hydration Silk Protein Conditioner and more.

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Danna Norek founded AuraSensory, a line of naturally inspired and effective hair, body and skin care products free of harmful chemicals.