Aromatherapy 101, 102, and 103!

A natural health magazine I read religiously published an article having to do with eo’s. The writer was not a trained holistic health professional, let alone an aromatherapist. Which is normally fine, if sharing a personal testimony or excitement over the discovery of these amazing little bottles of gold. But this person was giving advice in this article that was potentially harmful should someone with no knowledge about them follow his written words of garbage. One of the very first lessons I learned in school was to create a complete full-fledged fact file on every. Single. Oil I planned on recommending or using with a friend, family member, or patient. It was through making the 123 fact files that I learned the most about safety and what these oils are capable of doing in the body. Making these files are the most important tool in a professional aromatherpist’s toolkit. It is thanks to the wonderful training and mentorship I received and continue to receive that I realized there is a real need for affordable Aromatherapy 101 information distribution. So I am making this the topic for my first book. Yup, this post is my official announcement of a book I am writing for budding aromatherapists. If you sell, recommend or promote oils you have an enormous responsibility to know these oils inside and out. Medications have been created from the plants these oils are made from and only a medical doctor can write a prescription for them. Anyone with a hundred bucks can begin selling essential oils. So it is imperative that the training is there, the mentorship from your “upline” (if working through a pyramid/independent consultant type business) is solid, or the school you are attending is approved by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy, or NAHA. Passing the ARC exam is the highest level of certification required in the U.S. currently. I would expect that anything I read recommending eo’s professionally or in a nation-wide magazine be written by someone who has completed at least some certification. As for myself I am a Level 1 Certified Aromatherapist, working my way through the 200 hours needed to gain my Level 2 Certification. I hold a Student of Aromatherapy Membership with the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy. I am a wholesale member of Young Living Essential oils, who plant, harvest, distill and package their own plant essences. They are not a pyramid selling company with an “upline.” It is a company that does offer opportunities to hold classes and promote memberships, but I have not chosen that route personally. I am not a salesperson, but a writer. And an aromatherapist. Maybe one day I will teach classes and sell memberships, but my mentors in Young Living are amazing at it and I don’t think I could hold a candle… so for now, I am writing about it!

Why would anyone need to learn about essential oils? Isn’t using them teaching me enough? Maybe about the smells and effects we can see, but not about the effects of the oils being absorbed into the bloodstream when applied or via the lungs when inhaled directly or through a diffused room. We have diffusers in every room, portable ones for traveling and back-up’s I haven’t even opened yet. I awake to the oils aromatically, use them throughout the day in my beauty and cleaning products, and end my evening with capsules of oils. I’m a believer. The effectiveness of these forms of treatment has been proved empirically over thousands of years, but in recent decades controlled experiments have demonstrated how much and how quickly essential oils work. Traditionally, the internal use of eo’s began in France by medical doctors who are also aromatherapists. It is only in countries where the two fields are not taught together that internal consumption is not recommended. Therapists in France have a thorough knowledge of how the body works physiologically and the pharmacology aspects of the eo’s themselves. Now, I can’t see myself ever becoming a doctor. And I love living in the U.S. and plan to stay here. So… if I were to ever suggest the internal use of eo’s, without the years of training followed by our “French counterparts,” I would risk serious harm to someone. And it’s illegal. The International Federation of Aromatherapists specifically requires it’s members to use the oils externally. Having expressed that, I bought the oils with one particular plant essence in mind. And my plan was to capsule it up and take it every day to counteract the free radicals and sick cells in my bladder. It’s not illegal to share what I do, as long as I share that I am doing something that is not recommended here. But it’s working. Wink.

A friend of mine recently became a consultant for a company that sells essential oils, among other things. She shared that becoming a certified aromatherapist was simply not something she had the time or desire to do on top of being a mom, a business woman and a homeschooler. And it sparked a desire inside of me to share some of the most basic, shoot-from-the-hip, aromatherapy intel that I couldn’t get from any of the companies selling it, but only from school. I love to write; I love to share what I learned (because as any homeschooler will tell you, repeating what we just read/heard is the best way to learn something ourselves). Those who can’t “do,” teach. Well, I can’t sell oils, but I use them daily, often hourly, and I would love to teach some of the incredible skills I have learned through writing. My first book… I’ll keep you all updated and hope to get feedback from you guys as I share pieces here and there!

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