Why Your Brain Links Smells To Memories and How To Release Negative Emotions

Hey friends! Ever wonder why a smell can take you back to a moment in time? Well,  I’m gonna drop some science on you today! My freshman year of college I learned that the limbic system of the brain plays a major role in interpreting and channeling intense experiences, particularly memories of fear or trauma. This is super basic Psych101 stuff.

The amygdala and hippocampus are 2 parts of the limbic system that play a huge role in emotional processing, and they just happen to be situated less than an inch away from the olfactory nerve. This is why the smell of churros can shoot you back to that childhood trip to Disney or a certain cologne reminds you of your crazy ex boyfriend. 

Olfaction (smell) is the sense that is physically closest to the limbic system structures of the amygdala (which is involved in experiencing emotion and influencing behaviors and activities) and the hippocampus (which encompasses memory—working and short term.)

The amygdala is a key player in storing and releasing emotional trauma, and aromas can have a profound effect on both. Essential oils in particular can be very powerful tools in releasing emotional trauma you may not even be consciously aware of.

Young Living oils, because they’ve been properly distilled from clean plants—contain biochemicals, like sesquiterpenes, that increase blood oxygen levels in the brain. This oxygenation coupled with the power of aroma stimulates and affects the amygdala in ways that facilitate the release of stored emotional blocks, both in the subconscious mind and in our body systems. Incredible, right?

I have been using Young Living’s “Feelings kit” to aid in my emotional release, among other empowering things like feeding my mind and stepping up my spiritual practice. Release oil has had such an impact on me that I’d say if you can’t spring for the whole Feelings collection right now, at least get Release oil into your tool box. Diffuse it when you sleep, rub it over your liver area, or just breathe it straight from the bottle. Just do it a few times a day consistently and see what happens. 

P.S.- If you’re not yet a Young Living member and don’t have a person you know and trust to guide you, feel free to join our tribe of Joyful Oilers. You can use this link to sign up now or visit this page for more information on getting started. Bye for now!

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