by Simply Grace
Cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, rosemary, ginger, vanilla, orange, pine, frankincense, myrrh,…aromas that fill the air during the holidays; those warm, comforting, inviting, and satisfying smells of the season that remind us. They are usually reminders of traditions, good times, happy feelings and fond memories.
Did you know? Humans have about 20 million olfactory (smell) receptors and can detect 10,000 – 40,000 different scents. Dogs, by comparison have about 220 million olfactory receptors.
The olfactory bulb is located at the top of the sinus cavity and detects odors. It is a direct extension of the brain and extends into the limbic system, which is where we process emotion. The first area stimulated by an odor is the “fight, flight or freeze” alarm area called the amygdala. Connected to the amygdala is the hippocampus which is involved in the formation of memories. Our brain creates memories to organize our experiences.
Reactions to smells are “automatic” because they are involved in basic survival mechanisms. This power of scent to act as a “signal” can be used to enhance our emotional life. If scent acts as a signal, and this automatically triggers responses in our brains, can we use this power intentionally to create emotional changes? Absolutely!
Essential oils are natural extracts that are distilled from plants. They have been valued for thousands of years for physical healing, emotional balancing and spiritual communion. According to Dr. David Stewart, a single drop of essential oil may contain up to 40 million trillion molecules. The human body has roughly 100 trillion cells. This means that a single drop of oil applied to the body, if absorbed completely, could potentially put 40,000 molecules of oil into each and every cell in the body.
There are situations where the holidays or just family time in general can bring up some painful memories or even traumatic events. We continually make meaning out of our experiences. This process of making meaning creates the transition from the shock and alarm of the original experience into what eventually forms belief systems about ourselves and life. When we feel emotionally unbalanced it is usually due to being triggered by events that are activating past issues. The past continues to exist in us in the form of images, thoughts, feelings and beliefs. They may not be conscious but they color our present experiences.
In our last update, we shared about our use of the Emotional Freedom Technique or Tapping to enhance our clients’ recovery process. Another modality that we also integrate when needed in the counseling process is the Aroma Freedom Technique (AFT) developed by Dr. Benjamin Perkus. This process incorporates the power of scent along with specific focusing instructions on the stressful or painful memory to support a gentle and profound re-evaluation of the memory. Smelling a Memory Release Mixture of essential oils while focusing on the thought, feeling and memory disrupts the stressful memory. It adds a calming effect which soothes the emotions while the memory processes. Since memories and the meaning we create from them are stored in our mental filing system, they can be reviewed and our response to them can be changed.
We continue to witness incredible changes in our clients. For example, AFT was used in a counseling session with a client who felt stuck in the effects of a disturbing memory. She had been in an abusive relationship and experienced guilt in having her young son exposed to that kind of behavior. When she made a decision to end the relationship with the man, he threatened self – harm. During the Memory Release Process, the focus is on the Image > Emotion > Feeling in the Body > Thought > Belief. The client identified her feelings of betrayal, distrust, grief, despair, lack of control and lack of understanding that she felt in her throat and heart. Smelling the oil blends helped clarify her thinking and enhance her ability to forgive, release and heal. We are very grateful for the opportunities that God has given us to elevate our skills. Our holistic and integrative methods are being a blessing to others.
Thank you for continuing to support our vital work with your prayers and donations. Over half of clients do not give the suggested donation rate. So, outside contributions will provide scholarships for clients not able to make a donation for services. Our mission is to help the hurting rediscover a passion for life; recovering and resting in the love and acceptance of God and self. Six months is the average time spent with clients.
$1,500.00 will provide one client with 22 counseling sessions.
Online shopping through Amazon.Smile.org will benefit Simply Grace if we are chosen as your designated non-profit organization.
We hope you have a MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY 2019!
Ken and Debbie Pallone
Simply Grace Mailing Address:
133 Samaritan Drive, Suite 202
Cumming, GA 30040
133 Samaritan Drive
Cumming, GA 30040
3730 Roswell Road
Marietta, GA 30062