As I've helped folks along on their journey to wellness using essential oils, I've noticed that people generally fall into one of four categories when it comes to their oil use. Each step along the way is valuable because it teaches us something different and important about these plant based health tools. Where are you on your journey? And where do you ultimately want to wind up on the road to living life above the wellness line with essential oils?

  • Let's Get Rid of the Chemicals and Toxins Many people start their journey with essential oils (“EOs”) because they want things that smell good in their homes, but they know that the traditional sprays and perfumes they can find at the grocery store are absolutely FILLED with chemicals and toxins. From household cleaners to fresh air sprays to personal care products like moisturizers, shampoos and face washes, these items can load up our systems with upwards of 20 chemicals before we've even headed out the door in the morning! It really is shocking. But pure, therapeutic grade essential oils have none of the chemicals or toxins, and all of the heavenly aroma we're looking for in our environments. The fun part is, when we're “using” at this level, we may be oblivious to the health supporting benefits of EOs…but those benefits are still there! We may start to notice that we are breathing easier or that our mood feels more stable. Maybe we're sleeping more easily than we were before. And then we start to connect the dots. These things started happening when we started using pure, therapeutic EOs around the house!
  • Let's Try To Tackle Some Basic Things Users at this level have either “graduated” from the “make my house smell good without the chemicals” level or they have actually been searching for something that can help with some pretty basic annoyances. Things like less than restful sleep, a diaper rash on the baby that won't seem to chill out, or that 4pm energy dip that won't quit. For those searching with purpose these days, they are almost certain to come across pure, therapeutic EOs as an option to try. In fact, this is how most folks come to the EO party these days! Simple little chronic issues that don't seem to go away no matter what they try. So they try EOs as a “last resort,” only to find it's what they've been looking for all along. I can't tell you the number of people who've told me they've found more satisfying sleep with a blend of lavender and cedarwood. Or the folks who say a blend of lavender, ylang ylang and bergamot chill them right down when things are getting hectic. Most users at this level become fully sold on the awesomeness of essential oils and generally proceed to the next level of use.
  • Let's Try Some Trickier Things Now Before we dive into this one I've got to tell you some things. I am a distributor of Young Living essential oils. Because of that, it's important for me to tell you that the information I am sharing here and Young Living essential oils are not intended to treat, diagnose or cure disease and have not been reviewed by the FDA. While I am a certified health coach, I am NOT a physician and I am not qualified to diagnose or treat you. So it isn't lawful for me to compare the use of essential oils to the use of any drug. All that being said, some people do find their way to essential oils because of a health condition. Some of those people use EOs and find they like how they feel as a result of using them. Some people become firm believers in EOs at this point. I love hearing folks' testimonies about how essential oils changed their families' lives for the better in the wellness department! But something that's important to note is that not all people respond to the same essential oil in the same way. Like I said earlier, it's a journey. We learn as we go along what works for our body. It may be different than your best friend or even your child. The good news is that essential oils, when used safely, are pretty gentle on the body. So make sure you're chatting with your doctor about your essential oil use if you are under their care for anything and remember, EOs and drugs are not the same. They don't work the same way and they don't do the same things. In fact, I think essential oils can do some things that make them unique. And when you start to think this way, you find yourself graduating to the last level I'm about to discuss.
  • Let's Make This A Health & Wellness Lifestyle It is rare for anyone to enter the essential oil journey at this last level, but it is my hope that all the people I work with find their way here eventually. That's because it is my belief that the most powerful use of essential oils is the one where we use these plant based tools to support natural and robust wellness before we have to deal with falling below the wellness line. Just like plant based foods have the ability to boost immunity, detoxify our systems and help to energize our body's cells, essential oils from plants can provide similar benefits to the body — in a VERY concentrated form. When we realize we can create a wellness routine to follow each and every day with these very special compounds, we can find health being strengthened in many different areas. And it doesn't have to be long and drawn out or complicated, either. Think about it. We've grown accustomed to using certain personal care products each and every day. What if we simply switched to using ones that were infused with pure, therapeutic grade essential oils? Likewise, we've probably tried things like coffee or sugar to get that end of the day energy spurt going. What if we swapped out those things for essential oils or infused products that could give us similar energy benefits with additional support on the side? It's about shifting a lifestyle. That might take time, but I'm hoping to show my tribe over time that it really is worth it. Case in point: One of my kids is getting to the age where he needs deodorant. Last year, I was still using traditional, aluminum containing deodorant, and I was finding that my underarms were itching and sore all the time. I wondered if it was my deodorant. At the same time I was being tested for a genetic mutation that causes the body to not be able to detox as efficiently as it could without the mutation. I came up positive for it and that's when some things about my body started to make sense. I immediately switched to an all natural, essential oil based deodorant. And guess what. My underarms stopped itching and hurting. So, guess whose kids are never going to use traditional, aluminum containing deodorant. I'm setting them up right, right from the start. My oldest will be getting an all natural stick (that actually works, by the way!) in his Christmas stocking this year.

If you have any questions about finding your way to the essential oils lifestyle part of the journey, please join the conversation! You can comment on this post below or you can find me on Facebook at Beacon Essentials. And if you'd like to learn more about Young Living essential oils and how to become a member (remember, I told you I am a distributor, so I do make money if you decide to buy — full disclosure) you can check that option out here.