It’s been a rough week.
Between the devastating fires in Maui which has impacted so many friends and loved ones, the fact my daughter flies back to college today and that next week marks the five-year anniversary of Max’s death which feels oddly more intense.
Max was 12 years old when he was killed. Today he would have been 17 and starting his senior year of high school. While I have done the best I can to process my grief over the loss of my adorable 12 year old, I still feel occasionally blind sighted by the grief over the missed milestones – the dances he will never attend, the college applications he will never write, the prom and graduation he will never attend. I find myself already bracing for the impact of his friends social media posts for these milestone events.
And in my effort to continually crash test dummy myself, I decided to lean into my sadness and heartbreak to see what oils might help lighten the intensity.
Essential Oils for Heartbreak
Sadness and heartbreak are natural responses to the loss of something or someone to which you have formed a bond or an attachment – like the loss of my son, my daughter leaving and the devastation of an entire town in Maui.
Essential oils can help you process and shift feelings of heartbreak, along with the feelings of sadness, loss, grief, overwhelm and disempowerment often associated with grief.
This has to do, in part, with your sense of smell.
You have a direct link between your sense of smell and the areas of the brain responsible for moderating your emotions and behaviors. When you inhale essential oils, airborne substances stimulate receptor cells in the roof of the nasal cavities. The olfactory receptors carry signals to the olfactory bulb in the brain. The information is then sent to the areas of your brain responsible for memory, behavior, and emotion.
Your limbic system is the emotional center of your brain that controls your hormones and influences your emotions and your mood. The limbic system plays a role in controlling several unconscious physiological functions that influence your emotions, like breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure.
On a physical level, only two synapses separate your amygdala from your olfactory nerve. No other sensory system has this kind of direct and intense contact with the neural substrates of your brain’s emotional control center. Your other four senses, including sound, sight, taste, and touch must travel to other regions of the brain first, before reaching your limbic system.
This makes essential oils an incredibly powerful tool for calming the intensity of some of the emotions that correlate with heartbreak such as sadness, fear and anger.
By triggering specific memories or emotions, the aroma from an essential oil may help release heartache, improve your mood and promote relaxation. In fact, research suggests that essential oils may help in the treatment of depression, which is one of several emotions that people tend to experience when dealing with heartbreak.
Oils allow you to gently release these intense emotions, much like you would slowly and carefully unscrew the top of a carbonated beverage to gently release excess carbonation and avoid an explosion.
My Favorite Essential Oils for Heartbreak
Particular parts of a plant and how they can help in the grieving or transitioning period.
Some of my favorite blends below can be used to help gently release and support heartbreak and sadness.
Heart™ blend was formulated to balance the heart to support, integrate and reset all the systems of the body, including mental clarity, physical health and emotional balance. The heart is our body’s reset button. By applying Vibrant Blue Oils Heart blend over the heart, it helps return the heart to balance, and strengthen our ability to process difficult emotions like heartbreak, sadness and grief.
More specifically, essential oils can be used to remove emotional toxins, along with physical toxins, to help support your emotional release. The high frequency of the essential oils may help to open the subconscious doors and unlock the barriers that stop us from releasing our traumas. The oils oxygenate the cells and bring its blockages to the surface, ready to be released.
Since smell travels directly to the emotional control center in the limbic system, inhaling essential oils releases trapped emotional patterns, including patterns of heartache. Essential oils – with their unique molecular structure – can directly stimulate the limbic lobe and the amygdala where emotional trauma is stored, processed and released.
Each essential oil possesses multiple properties that can support emotional processing and release. The oils in the Heart™ blend in particular may help to balance your heart energy to promote feelings of safety that allow your subconscious mind to release negative stored memories and emotions and replace them with positive beliefs.
Heart™ balances the heart to enhance compassion and support, integrate and reset all the systems of the body, including supporting feelings of open-heartedness, expansiveness, receptivity while mitigating loneliness, sadness and grief.
The heart integrates and balances the physical, emotional, and mental body, providing blood to every cell and every organ. It also serves as a complex information processing center, influencing brain function, the nervous system, hormonal system and most of the body’s major organs.
The heart is our body’s reset button, but a state of constant stress can fatigue the heart and compromise our ability to reset, leading to inflammation, infections, toxicity and heart disease. By returning the heart to balance, we support the cardiovascular and circulatory system, regenerate the structure of the heart and helping to reset the homeostatic mechanism for the entire body.
Heart™ blend contains a proprietary blend of organic and/or wild crafted essential oils that helps you show love to others and yourself. Research has shown that sweet smells, like those found in the Heart™ blend, have been shown to reduce pain by activating the opioid receptors in the brain.
To release the trapped emotions or correct energetic imbalance, you can use the Emotion Code to identify trapped emotions, then Heart™ blend over the heart to clear the trapped emotions from your body.
READ THIS NEXT: Heart Centering with Essential Oils
Heartbreak may be triggered by traumatic or stressful events, like the death of a loved one, an accident or near miss accident, exposure to a traumatic event (like a natural disaster) , a frightening medical diagnosis or an unexpected financial or romantic loss.
These stressful events trigger a stress response in your body, throwing you into the fight-or-flight state of the nervous system. Your body responds to any threat to survival, including unexpected or alarming news, by dropping into the “emergency” sympathetic state of the nervous system to cope with the change in circumstances and physiologically prepare you to fight or flee. Your heart rate, blood pressure and respiratory rate increase and your blood flow is routed away from your organs of digestion toward muscles in the arms and legs in preparation for flight.
Whenever you feel unsafe, either physically or emotionally, your nervous system kicks into this high gear or sympathetic State, activating the survival brain either sending you into “fight or flight” or “freeze” shut down avoidance strategies. To help your body safely process heartbreak, you can shift your nervous system into the safety Parasympathetic branch of the nervous system where your heart and respiratory rate can return to normal.
Parasympathetic™ blend, which contains a combination of clove and lime, can help stimulate your vagus nerve to activate your parasympathetic nervous system and gently release heartbreak.
Citrus Oils, like Lime, are useful when you need to inject an uplifting and refreshing approach to life and help heal a dark and heavy feeling. Lime is known to help you ‘let go’ and release anxious feelings and heartbreak.
The clove oil in the blend also supports your ability to change your circumstances and let go of victim mentality and patterns of self-betrayal by restoring a sense of self and instilling boundaries and the strength to stand up for your needs. For intensely stressful situations, we recommend applying it at the base of the skull and over the heart.
Dabbing a drop of Parasympathetic™ blend behind my earlobe ALWAYS lifts me up. I think of it as my personal reset button.
When you are able to calm down and drop into the parasympathetic state, you can better process and release heartbreak.
The more you activate your parasympathetic nervous system, the more your body can process through the shock. A drop of Parasympathetic™ oil placed on the vagus nerve (behind the earlobe on the mastoid bone) can help you calm your nervous system and drop into a more grounded, parasympathetic place.
Lung Support™ was designed to help overcome grief and let go of negative experiences, including heartbreak.
Feelings of grief, bereavement, regret, loss and remorse are often associated with the lungs. The lungs are sponge-like organs located near the backbone on either side of the heart. They function as a fundamental source of life energy –transporting oxygen from the atmosphere into the capillaries so they can oxygenate blood – as well as an important channel of elimination – releasing carbon dioxide from the bloodstream into the atmosphere.
Grief can obstruct ability of the lungs to accept and relinquish, impeding their function of “taking in” and “letting go”. Grief that remains unresolved can become chronic and create disharmony in the lungs, weakening the lung’s function of circulating oxygen around the body. When lung function is impaired, it leads to shortness of breath, fatigue and feelings of melancholy, like that experienced with grief. Sadly, many chronic respiratory diseases and conditions develop after a major loss or bereavement.
Lung contains flower oils, like Rose, which can be powerful when you need to get out of a dark place. Rose oil is also known to bring a feeling of love, create a sense of well-being and release past hurts, like grief. Its benefits were documented in studies that found breathing and blood pressure relaxed after Rose oil was applied to the skin.
Lung Support™ blend works best when topically applied over the heart, lungs or around the ears. It can also be deeply inhaled and allowing yourself to gently release intense emotions with your exhale as a powerful strategy to allow you to micro-dose emotional release.
READ THIS NEXT: Essential Oils for Grief
Ready to get started? Click the links below to order today:
- Heart™ available here
- Lung Support™ available here
- Parasympathetic™ available here
- Rose available here