Anxiety Products I Love

The SAD reality: The impact of the sense of smell


My dad has a motorcycle.

I remember when he first got it, he said he expected to ride along and feel the wind in his….helmet, but he never expected the number of smells that he would come upon in one ride. He said car exhaust, passing restaurants, camp fires and even the lake produced smells that he never noticed in a car. Some good, some bad. But they are all there.

Some smells can be disgusting, but I won’t name those. Some can be soothing. For me, it’s eucalyptus spearmint.

I discovered this scent a few years ago while we were at Bath and Body Works loading up on the foaming hand soap at $3 a bottle. Mmmmm. It smells fresh, clean and certainly not over-powering or perfume-y. I wasn’t surprised when I learned this scent was the “stress relief” for their aromatherapy line.

Then I started to notice it other places, you know, outside of Bath and Body Works and my bathroom (where we had like 80 bottles because mmmmmm). I guy at work had the same scent in his office. My therapists office diffuses something very similar. Every time I smell it, I enjoy it and I feel instantly grounded.

My therapist and I have talked about this a “rescue.” You know, when the anxiety gets out of control and you feel the panic creeping in, your sense of smell is very important. If there is a smell that chills you out, brings you back to the present and even relaxes you, it’s a useful coping mechanism.

It never fails, though, in the moments that I need the calming, refreshing scent of eucalyptus spearmint, I’m generally without it. I can use peppermint in a pinch, but there isn’t anything like the eucalyptus spearmint scent to get me to inhale deeply, fully, and exhale slowly, bringing my breathing back under control.

Then I remembered my mom had purchased me one of those essential oil necklaces last Christmas.  She got me this one from Escentric Boutique on Etsy.

It comes with two lava stones. Placing just a few drops of essential oil on one of the stones lasts all day.

I actually went on a ten-hour bus trip with my daughter’s class recently and took this with me. I had it loaded with peppermint so that I could try to re-center myself if things got….dicey.

Anyway, there are two problems with this right now.

  1. I can’t find the necklace. I’ve looked everywhere. I remember my daughter was looking at it and playing with it recently. She was obsessed with it because it functions like a locket that was her NUMBER ONE WISHED FOR CHRISTMAS GIFT this year. Side note: She got one. Side note 2: She probably has something to do with my missing necklace.
  2. I’ve purchased eucalyptus and spearmint essential oils and I can’t get the right blend. It’s always too spearmint-y. Which I guess is okay because I like spearmint, but I might as well sniff the eucalyptus spearmint aromatherapy lotion from Bath and Body Works.

So, I’m trying to diffuse this in every room of my house right now, but see bullet point number 2. I just can’t get the scent right in all of my mixing.

There are plenty of scents that are recommended for people with anxiety.

According to Develop Good, these are the top scents for relieving anxiety.

  • Lavender
  • Roman Chamomile
  • Peppermint
  • Clary Sage
  • Ylang Ylang
  • Patchouli Oil
  • Geranium
  • Lemon
  • Rose Oil
  • Sandalwood
  • ​Valerian Root

Of course, it various from person to person. My “scent” isn’t even on here. However, it’s amazing how much just smelling a scent can return me to the present moment, take a deep breath and breathe out the anxiety that starts to take over my life.

It’s not always a cure. Certainly. But especially in this time of year, when the anxiety is out of control, just about anything that helps take the edge off is worth the time and effort.

One thought on “The SAD reality: The impact of the sense of smell

  1. Lavender, is my calming bring me back down, pull myself together sent. I have it to diffuse, my laundry care products, room spay. It just brings me peace and happiness in one big breath

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