Stop Using Only Half of Your Mind In Your Aromatherapy Practice One of the most basic problems limiting
the effectiveness of aromatherapists today is a tendency toward bad decisions. In some cases they never learned how to make a good decision. That is a parenting issue that we can take on another day. Beyond parenting, one reason aromatherapists often make bad decisions is that they aren't using their full mind. Their school and work routines cause an unhealthy focus on just two of the intellectual faculties, reason and memory while four other mental muscles wither away: perception, will, imagination and intuition. This tendency to get away from using all of our mental muscles worsens the longer we use analytical thinking the majority of the day. Just like we encourage our clients to make time to allow the aromas introduced to improve their lives, we as aromatherapists must make time to exercise all of the mental muscles. Today I will teach you a few easy ways to activate your intuition as well as the intuition of other people, from your automobile to your office. Intuition is your gut feeling, your ability to tap into Universal Truth. Two steps to activate intuition: ask the right questions and avoid the urge to rationalize or intellectualize the answer you receive. To practice using your intuition, pick situations that require a simple decision where you are not emotionally attached to the outcome. Here's a fun one: you are stopped at a red light. Close your eyes and intuit when the light turns green. Do not push the accelerator until you have opened your eyes! Here's another: you are at a restaurant. Decide that you are going to ask the opinion of the waiter about two or three dishes. Intuit what you think the response will be before you ask the question. Will you be correct every time? No. With practice, you can achieve over a 95% accuracy rate. Now let’s move to a more serious example:
the conference room. Your group is trying to hash out some of the details about a controversial step forward. The group is stuck. You need them to move on and activating their intuition is one way to help. Tell the group members you want their gut feelings, their instinctive answer first. As an example, ask them to write down what first comes to mind then ask your next question. Ask your question framed as a two or three part decision like, “Do we solve the supply issue first or the delivery issue?” Make sure they write down their intuitive answer before you begin group discussion to avoid the opinion sway that invariably occurs when one person hears another person’s answer. Now let’s move to your office and an encounter with a client. Your client suffers from the same left brain overuse bias that you do. Wouldn’t you like to know what hunches your client has about their condition? Gut feelings? After your client gives you some background information as you are taking your history, look at their record and identify a reminder of your client’s family...the name of a spouse, a child, close friend or even a pet. If you dont have one, ask a question like, What is the name of the person or animal you are most concerned for in your life right now?” and add that information to your record. Otherwise, use the name of the Emergency Contact listed when you are ready to activate your client’s intuition. When the time is right, ask this question, “If your husband, Travis, had the same experience you were going through right now and I was seeing him, what would you want to make sure he shared with me?” The association of the loved one is the emotional key that unlocks the rest of your client's mind. You are looking for the first response, the intuitive response. If your client hesitates, encourage with a phrase like, “Just tell me the first thing that comes to
mind. Practice asking similar questions in a variety of situations where you are not emotionally attached to the outcome this week. This will give you enough experience to tap into your intuition so that you can make a good decision when you do have an emotional attachment. For example, you may find that at some point you need a professional opinion about something. It might be a recommendation about fixing your car, or about a health concern of your own. Customize the above strategy you used in your office with your client and use it with the professional. For example, look around and identify a picture the professional has on display in their office. Gesture to the picture and ask, “Mr. Harris, if this was your daughter’s car, what would you recommend.” The professional will give you the answer that comes from the heart instead of just the head. Try these exercises for a really fun was to access more of your intuition and to grow a more robust aromatherapy practice. If you have questions about any other mental muscles and how to strengthen them, be sure to send a letter to the author. Until the next time, keep taming your mind and live vibrantly every day.
Lori Barr, M. D. is a registered aromatherapist and internationally recognized health and lifestyle expert. She serves on the Aromatherapy Registry Council Board.
The Aromatherapy Registration Council goes computerized for the ARC Registration Examination in Aromatherapy! The ARC examination will now be offered in a computerized administration. This increases flexibility for the candidates. The examination will continue to have 250 test questions. One test question will appear on the screen at a time. The examination will not shut off until all items have been answered. Candidates need not have elaborate computer skills to test. Candidates will continue to receive results of examination 4-6 weeks from test date.
Paper & Pencil Testing
⇒ Test sites in all 50 states
⇒ Test sites in 18 states
⇒ Testing possible approximately 28 days/year
⇒ Test offered 2 days per year
⇒ Candidate selects 1 of 28 days exam is
⇒ Candidate must test on 1 of 2 dates exam is
⇒ Candidate selects one of several time slots at time of scheduling
⇒ Candidate begins exam at time determined by test site
⇒ Candidate views & focuses on 1 test item at a
⇒ Candidate views several items per page
Time, and items can be tagged for later review
⇒ Candidate likely drives to nearest test site
⇒ Candidates may drive or fly several miles to test
⇒ Candidate sleeps at home night before test
⇒ Many candidates require costly lodging accommodations the night before testing
⇒ Exam does not shut off until confirmed by the candidate
⇒ Possibility that candidates may mistakenly not answer an item
⇒ Exam cost $325.00
⇒ Exam Cost $275.00
UPCOMING EXAMINATION DATES ●
October 9—23, 2010
Application Deadline: September 1, 2010
April 9—23, 2011
Application Deadline: March 1, 2011
October 8—22, 2011
Application Deadline: September 1, 2011
Update from Cropwatch by Tony Burfield Threatened Species
As of March 2010, guaiacwood oil and rosewood oils are now covered by Appendix II of CITES, and trading these items without proper licenses and permissions shortly becomes a criminal act in most civilized countries. Although Cropwatch has drawn attention to the similar ecologically fragile position of Asian styrax, agarwood oil (various spp.), sandalwood oil East Indian, sandalwood oil East African (Osyris spp.), Cedrela odorata oil, copaiba balsam, gurjun balsam, candeia plant spp. (used by the German pharmaceutical industry as a source of alpha‐bisabolol), costus qualities, Parmelia (fragrant lichen) qualities, some frankincense yielding spp. (e.g. Boswellia papyrifera) to name but a few, it’s amazing how many well‐known 'aromatherapy names' put profit first, and green issues/concern for the environment second. Still, a number of aromatherapy oil traders and cosmetic manufacturing companies now check their portfolios against Cropwatch's A‐Z list of Threatened species, which you can find in the Cropwatch Files section of the Cropwatch website. http://www.cropwatch.org/
Essential Oil Supplies
The threat against the continued supply of many essential oils has considerably worsened lately. Severe drought in the essential oil‐producing region of China is seeing essential oils and isolates rise to unheard‐of prices. The internal markets in India and China are consuming ever‐increasing amounts of essential oils, to the point where some traders see no spare capacity for export in the future. The march of REACH http://ec.europa.eu/environment/chemicals/ reach/reach_intro.htm ‐ in Europe will force industry to pay up to $180,000 per ingredient for safety studies (especially for reproductive toxicity studies), which it can't afford, so we will see many essential oils dropped from trading portfolios in Europe. In some cases the loss of this outlet means that the production of essential oils will no longer be economically viable for producers. This is why you are seeing a lot of long‐term manufacturers’ companies rationalizing, or pulling out, of the business. The better news is that there is an opportunity for anti‐regulation voices to be heard, and I am busy accepting offers to talk on this very matter (the next one is at the World Perfumery Congress in Cannes in June). I am encouraged by the anti‐regulation protests in the US and hope to be inputting more into this soon.
Cropwatch continues to put out as much free technical material as we are able to, especially on health and safety matters. We are currently campaigning against restrictions against limiting furocoumarins in citrus oils, restrictions on tagete qualities, alleged toxicity of tea tree oil and vanillin and coumarin‐ containing naturals, to name but a few. But perhaps most seriously, the drastic effect of restricting the concentrations of weak rodent carcinogens (safrole, methyl chavicol, and methyl eugenol), which are contained across the broad spectrum of essential oils is severely limiting the use of essential in cosmetics. Whilst you may say "so what", reduced usage of essential oils because of alleged carcinogenicity is not good for the essential oil industry, and professions dependent upon it such as aromatherapy. On the positive side we actually had an admission from IFRA that their prohibition of melissa oil was a mistake, and we are trying to do the same with santolina oil, ylang‐ylang oils, jasmine qualities and many others. I know all of this might seem a bit "off‐subject" to some of you, but particularly due to the effects of REACH, the rising fuel and packaging prices, and the effects of increased demand from the internal markets of producing countries, we are seeing unprecedented supply shortages in aromatics at present. So if are wondering why all your oils are even more adulterated than normal, or are derived from an entirely different species, you don't have to look too far.
The Beneficial Effects of Essential Oils
The single risk/benefit balance of ingredients is ignored in European legislation, mainly because there is no identifiable body to dialogue with about physiological benefits. But I can't help feeling that aromatherapy is losing an opportunity here. Apart from one or two lectures by Robert Tisserand, the lead on beneficial effects of essential oils/ natural products is being taken by cosmetologists. Time for change, surely?
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