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Glow With the Flow – a mega blog of wellness!

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Welcome to Glow with the Flow! This will hopefully be a quarterly ‘mega blog’ (that started off as a working title but I kept saying it so here we are….) of lots of different views of wellness and how it means something different to everyone. It’s a biggie so buckle up (or keep coming back to it and read another little chunk!)

David Harvey Yoga

Amanda Savory Kinesiology

Pretty Cactus Plants

Andy Thornton – Discovery House Explorer

Heart of the Matter

Conscious Cosmetics Company

Freyja Astrology

Kindaco

Ellen Mary Gardening

Gorse and Elder

I shall start and then I will introduce some amazing contributors to this first Wellness Blog. Enjoy!

Aromatherapy. This is my thing. I know you know that, but I really do feel that aromatherapy has a huge part to play in how we feel and how we influence how we feel.

On a very basic level, if your environment stinks, you’re not going to feel great, am I right? It’s going to get on your nerves, bring you down and it will eventually make you feel pretty grumpy.

But what happens when we love what is around us and how it smells? Fresh cut grass, freesias or roses, a freshly peeled orange (hello citrus lovers!) or a woody, earthy woodland walk after a rain shower. You get where I’m going?

The sciency bit I will keep brief but what actually happens when we smell is that air is breathed in through the nose and the odour molecules are detected by the olfactory receptors in the back of the nasal passages. Those in turn transmit into nerve impulses, which are sent to the brain. Some impulses are sent to the cerebral cortex to be perceived as smell and some connect to the limbic system. This part of the brain is concerned with various aspects of emotional behaviour.

These two processes together account for the way that perceptions of smell can be linked to memories and emotional responses.

How cool is that?

We can absolutely use this to our advantage – in fact you probably already do without realising it.

Have you ever got a whiff of chocolate cupcakes baking in the oven and are immediately whisked back to your Nan’s house when you were a kid, remembering licking the bowl and it being the best thing ever? Do you ever now make chocolate cupcakes to cheer yourself up?

Or maybe you went on an amazing holiday when everything was absolutely perfect and you felt like you could live forever – and sometimes you take a sneaky sniff of the suncream just so you can be back there for a moment?

Or maybe the stink of semolina pudding turns your stomach because you remember sitting next to the horrible kid in class at lunch break who ate with his mouth open and always made you feel rubbish?

See, aroma is so powerful!

I urge you to find something aromatic that you absolutely love (I would love it to be one of my blends, but it doesn’t have to be *selfless*) and really practice anchoring the two things together (feeling good and smells). I shall use sleep as an example but it could be any feeling or emotion you would like to be able to recall.

Imagine being really sleepy, imagine how beautifully relaxed and comfortable you feel, that moment just before you fall into a deep slumber. Make the image really strong in your mind, make it colourful and bold, feel the pillow under your head, the duvet tucked around your shoulders, the gentle sounds around you.

When you are totally immersed by this image and feeling, take a good inhale of your chosen aroma. Keep the strong image going in your minds eye. Take one more sniff and gently come back to the present.

With practice, this is a brilliant way to anchor the aroma to your chosen state – be that calm, happy, grounded, sleepy, confident or something else.

I’d love for you to try this – let me know how you get on!

www.bergamotandflow.co.uk

Instagram – @bergamot_and_flow

Please meet David – he is my yoga teacher and a wonderful human! Always ready with wise words of mindfulness and calm, this is a brilliant technique he uses in his classes. Check out the many classes he offers on the link below (but don’t take my space!!)

Modern life can be stressful, in fact, modern life is stressful – fact. Running from one thing to the next, and filling up our days with endless to-do lists seems to be the norm. We feel guilty if we pause and rest but, if the last few years have proven anything, it is that we do need to pause, be still, and catch our breath.

During the global pandemic, the world was forced to pause, to be still, but instead of leaning into this, we froze with fear, and held our breath. My job as a Yoga Teacher is to help people reconnect to their breath. This is facilitated through Pranayama – Yogic breathwork.

One of my go-to Pranayama exercises for when I am feeling overwhelmed (I’m only human too) is Nadi Shodhana Pranayama, or Alternate Nostril Breathing. This very effective technique involves breathing from one nostril to the next whilst holding the breath in between sides. The benefits are many – calming the nervous system, relaxing the body, promoting overall wellbeing, to name a few. If practiced regularly, and as part of a regular Yoga practice, it can lower stress and improve cardiovascular function too

If you’d like to have a go, follow these few simple instructions:

  • Find a quiet space without risk of interruption, and take a comfortable seated position

  • Rest your left hand on your left knee

  • Place the peace fingers of your right hand into the centre of your forehead

  • Close up the left nostril with your ring finger and breathe through the right, hold the breath at the top

  • Close up your right nostril with your thumb, and exhale through the left

  • Inhale through the left, hold breath at top

  • Exhale through the right

Repeat this a few times, perhaps until the right shoulder has had enough of holding that position, then spend a few more moments breathing deeply in and out of both nostrils. Perhaps notice how it has shifted your energy. If you don’t feel anything at first, dont worry, the benefits will manifest at some point.

Pranayama techniques are included in many different styles of Yoga. Often taught at the beginning of a class to give practitioners a chance to be still, and calm their minds of thoughts from the day.

The effects of Pranayama breathwork can really come into effect with a regular Yoga practice however, just being aware of your breathing as you move through daily life can have very positive effects too.

Stay grounded. Find stillness. Breathe.

www.davidharveyyoga.com

Instagram – @davidharveyyoga

Please meet Amanda – another amazing person in my life! We met last year and have known each other for fifty years since (ever have a friend like that? Lucky us hey?) Amanda has so many different skillsets and here is a great intro to the way she works.

Are you looking after your triangle?

Sometimes when I start to talk about whole body healing, I can be met with some blank looks, but one of the things that can help, and that is also at the heart of my healing work, is when I tell people about their Triangle of Health.

As a Kinesiologist and healer I see the body as multi dimensional, that means seeing the body as existing in structural, chemical and emotional dimensions. Simply put, I see the body as having 3 sides to it, just like a triangle. When these “sides” (physical, chemical and emotional aspects of life), are in perfect balance with each other, all sides of the body are supporting each other too, the triangle of health is complete and we can be seen to be in true health.

Let me explain each side of our triangle and how they rely on one another!

The Structural / Physical side:- This involves our movements and activity including walking, working, playing sport going to the gym. But it also includes the things that happen and cause stress, such as our falls, knocks and accidents, illnesses, operations and physical trauma. So, it is important that body function and physical health is maintained. This doesn’t mean just avoiding freak accidents such as motor vehicle or sporting injuries. It also includes more awareness about those subtle, and sometimes more worrying, repetitive strain injuries from work. These types of injuries could be caused by prolonged sitting at a desk, or repetitive motions in jobs such as painting, tiling, typing etc. All of these cause a stress on our body which could lead to physical imbalances.

The Chemical / Nutritional side – relates to the importance of fuelling the body with correct nutrients and with protecting the body from toxic substances. This obviously includes the food we give ourselves but also means things around us, smells, electrical items, wifi etc . Anything we put into, or subject our body to, from the outside environment has an effect on our chemical health. Think of our body as an engine, the fuel you feed it determines how well it will run. Run it poorly and it will fall out of balance.

The Emotional / Mental side – relates to the inseparable mind-body connection. We might have found the right balance of exercise and healthy eating but if we are amidst relationship or work stressors, then this can have a major effect on our mental health, in turn leading to emotional imbalances.

These are the three sides of our Triangle of Health. If any one of them is not balanced, it can directly impact the remaining sides of the triangle. I encourage all my clients to focus on making sure that the body is in complete balance, physically, emotionally and biochemically. When the body is balanced it can perform at its best, and that’s all we really want isn’t it!!

Seek more balance in your life, look after your triangle of health. We may never quite find the perfect balance, but it’s always worth stepping back once in a while, assessing your current situation in all three of these areas and asking yourself, am I living a balanced life?

https://amandasavory.com

Instagram – @amandasavory.kinesiology

Please meet Donna – this lovely lady is a total houseplant goddess and what she doesn’t know about plants isn’t worth knowing! Donna has been running Pretty Cactus Plants for years and always adapts and changes as needed to make her business a success – she is simply fabulous!

Houseplants: Bringing Joy, Purpose, and Wellness into My Life

Hi there, I’m Donna, a proud houseplant enthusiast and the owner of Pretty Cactus Plants. Houseplants have always been a source of happiness for me. When I hit a rough patch in my corporate career towards the end of 2018, I decided to pursue my dream of owning a houseplant shop. In February 2019, Pretty Cactus Plants became a reality, and I became a small business owner.

Transitioning from a 9-5 job to managing my own business wasn’t easy, but it was worthwhile. I found a passion and was fortunate enough to live my dream. Owning Pretty Cactus Plants and sharing the joy of houseplants with others provided me with focus and purpose.

Here are three reasons why houseplants can bring joy, purpose, and wellness into your life:

  • Improved air quality: Houseplants can help purify the air in your home by releasing oxygen and absorbing carbon dioxide. This can lead to a reduction in respiratory problems and allergies.

  • Reduced stress: Studies have shown that being around plants can lower stress levels and improve mood. Tending to a plant can also provide a sense of fulfillment and purpose.

  • Increased productivity: Having plants in your workspace can improve concentration and creativity, leading to increased productivity. Plants have also been shown to reduce noise levels, creating a more peaceful work environment.

So, go ahead and invest in a houseplant today. You may be surprised at the joy and wellness it can bring to your life.

https://www.prettycactus.co.uk

Instagram – @pretty.cactus.plants

Please meet Andy – he’s my favourite (because he’s my husband!) Andy has a long career of helping people in many different ways – coaching, mentoring, facilitating various courses and most recently as a cognitive behavioural hypnotherapist.

What is Kindness?

This small, simple word that we all know and use without thinking about carries such a weight of meaning and yet how often do we really stop to consider what we are really talking about when we use it? What is it? Who does it apply to? How do we know when we, or someone else, has been ‘kind’?

My old 2001 Oxford Dictionary of English defines kindness as ‘the quality of being friendly, generous and considerate’. Interesting to note the importance of the ‘and’ here indicating that all three of those conditions are required for kindness to be present. So one can be friendly and yet not kind, or both generous and considerate but not kind. Perhaps it is when we become aware of all three conditions being present that we feel for ourselves the pleasure of real kindness.

In my work as a therapist I often come across two distinct ways in which kindness manifests itself; firstly and perhaps most frequently in showing kindness to others; secondly, and much less consistently, in showing kindness to ourselves.

When we practice kindness either to other people or towards ourselves we can experience positive mental and physical changes through lowering stress levels and increasing the body’s production of feel good hormones such as dopamine, oxytocin and serotonin. Being kind has been shown to help boost the immune system, reduce blood pressure and reducing stress and anxiety.

The great thing is that it isn’t difficult to be kind. As the Dalai Lama said, ‘Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible’.

Showing kindness to others does not have to mean doing something big or life changing. Often it is the smallest acts of kindness that can have the most impact. A moment of support in a time of need, a quiet word of encouragement, a helping hand to carry a heavy load, or just a smile that says ‘I see you’ can make a world of difference. Whatever the act itself it will be underpinned by four principles:

Awareness – we must be aware of the opportunity to be kind. We cannot recognise the need if we are completely absorbed in our own thoughts, our own world, or our on-line alter egos.

Non-Judgment – we must be prepared to suspend judgment if we are to be truly kind. It is not for us to judge the good or bad, right or wrong of another person’s situation. It is only for us to recognise there is an opportunity for us to be kind.

Action – we must be stirred to act in a friendly, generous and considerate manner to the person in front of us. Awareness without action cannot be kind.

Unconditional – although the idea of pure altruism has been questioned in some circles, being kind means offering kindness without conditions or expectation of reward. The real reward for a kindness offered is in the inner positivity it gives rise to rather than any external reward or recognition.

How can you be kind to yourself?

Being kind to yourself is not just a nice idea, it is an essential form of self-care and a vital foundation for sustained kindness to others. Remember those aircraft safety briefings that stress the importance of putting on your own oxygen mask before seeking to help others? Well kindness to yourself is a bit like that. Often when I’m working with people it quickly becomes apparent that they are so strongly committed to taking care of everyone and everything around them that they have forgotten to take care of themselves. They are going through life trying so hard to look after others all the while without realising they don’t have their own oxygen mask on. Eventually they reach breaking point and end up sitting in front of me.

Here are just a few simple ways in which you can show yourself a bit of kindness today, and every day.

Self-Awareness

Being kind to yourself starts by building your self-awareness, listening to your internal voice with a sense of curiosity. What are you telling yourself, how often are you being negative or hard on yourself? How infrequently are you praising yourself, recognising all the things you are so good at? Consciously recognise all the positive things about yourself.

Generosity

Be generous with yourself and do things just for you. Give yourself time, disconnect from technology for a few hours and get out into nature. So many people unhesitatingly give themselves to other people and yet find it very difficult to be as generous to themselves.

Avoid Comparison

Beware the danger of comparisons. We live in a world of TV, advertising, social media that constantly shows us how we are not yet living the perfect life, how we don’t measure up to other people. Don’t fall into the comparison trap because this is one route to lots of negative self-talk and critique. The very opposite of kindness in fact.

Recharge

If you’re an introvert, as apparently 70% of us are, remember that after working or socialising with other people, after giving yourself to others, you’ll need quiet time alone to rest and recharge. This isn’t selfish, it’s necessary and doing so means you are being friendly, generous, and considerate to yourself.

So make a point of showing yourself, and those around you, some kindness. You’ll feel better for it.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/discoveryexplorer

Please meet Stacey – she is the sparkliest, most gorgeous human and can dance like no other! She is my spirit sister and the kindest person in the world!

Hello I’m Stacey from Heart of the Matter, Sam has kindly asked me to share some mental health wellbeing tips with you. Where do I start?! I have been working in the mental health industry for so many years, I have an armoury of tips and techniques and have been reflecting on how to share something with you on paper.

So here is one of my favourites for those of you feeling a little stuck and not believing in yourself and your ability to change.

I would like you to fold your arms in the usual way you always fold them, notice how you can perform this task without thinking.

Now, fold them the other way round and don’t curse me! Did you find it tricky? Did you really have to stop and think about the action you wanted to carry out? Would you have been able to carry on a conversation and perform this new task at the same time?

With a bit of mindful attention to ourselves, we are able to change but sometimes we don’t always stop and self nurture. Allow yourself time to change, develop and grow, you’re worth it.

Next time you feel a bit low or wobbly, stop and reflect on you and you alone, shut the world out for 2 or 3 minutes, remember the arm folding technique and allow yourself the time you need to make small, achievable and positive steps.

E-mail Stacey.heartofthematter@gmail.com

Instagram and Facebook – @heartofthematterwaveney

Please meet Alex! He is a total skincare guru and the most knowledgable person about skincare I’ve met! Super lovely man (and daddy to gorgeous little one!) his skincare products are simply brilliant – and have been mentioned in British Vogue no less!

Did you know that the skin is the body’s largest organ? We are overloaded with information regarding our other organs and our body in general, eat this for health and longevity, avoid this as it’s bad for you, but our skin is often pushed to the side and skincare is often thought of as a luxury. This may be because of the industry leaders and their elevated prices making it out of reach for most– but hey, this is where we come in because a great skincare routine doesn’t have to cost the earth, excuse the pun!

Committing to and following a good, consistent skincare routine can benefit the health of your body’s largest organ and deliver the bonus of providing the structure and pampering that benefits your psychological well-being. I mean honestly what is better than running a hot bath, adding some natural salts, setting an intention into a natural essential oil candle, then scrubbing the day away with a delicious smelling exfoliant? Sounds bliss, right?

But on a serious note, nothing makes us at Conscious Cosmetics happier than receiving a message informing us that we’ve helped eradicate someone’s acne or eczema, and that they have never felt such a boost to their self-confidence.

This is why we believe skincare is so much more than a luxury, it is fundamental to our wellbeing, especially in our social media overloaded pretentious society these days. We’ve all heard the saying “look good to feel good”, well this is true, and a good, well informed skincare routine can do this, from fighting signs of ageing to giving you a radiant glow – get on our 24k Gold face elixir peeps it’s a game changer!

Top tip , WATER, WATER, WATER, and more water with a tonne of veggies thrown in the mix! Slow down on the caffeine and swap out the diet fizzy drinks, if you can bear it, it will do wonders for hydrating your skin. Eating more than your 5 a day will also see a dramatic change for your skin, trust us!

Ok, back to actual skincare, summer is almost here so make sure you don’t neglect your feet! Sandal season is upon us so get on a mission to find a good pedi cream to soften those heels and tootsies, and by finding one, what I actually mean is obviously, ours is the best of the best!

Lastly don’t forget that whatever goes on your skin eventually makes its way into your bloodstream, so be sure to keep it natural! We don’t want all those nasty chemicals, colours and perfumes in our system!

https://www.consciouscosmetics.co.uk

Instagram – @consciouscosmeticscompany

Please meet Freyja! She is a wonderful human who I had the pleasure of meeting in person recently. So down to earth and incredibly knowledgeable of all things cosmic!

Self-Care with my Moon

Often our horoscopes don’t feel right and here’s one reason why that can be the case…

Reading our Sun-sign horoscope can feel detached from how we feel because how we feel is much more linked to our Moon sign. Our Moon sign is connected to the environment we grew up in, the way we seek comfort and nourishment and our daily habits.

Here’s 5 things every Moon sign should know to instantly tap into our unique self-care signature:

*Top tip: if you’re unsure of your moon sign head over to astro.com and input your birth details to find out your moon sign. It’s totally free!

**You will need: Your date of birth, time of birth and location of birth.

If you have an EARTH moon (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn) 1.massage, 2.garden, 3.order the damn cake, 4.engage your senses by cooking your favourite meal, 5. stroke a dog/cat

If you have an AIR moon (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius)

1. Discuss, 2. socialise (in person or online) 3. write, 4. play or listen to music, 5. read a book, read a book, read a book

If you have a FIRE moon (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius)

1. Seek a new experience, 2. try fell running, 3. go on a hot date, 4. play, 5. create

If you have a WATER moon (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces)

1. Switch off your phone, 2. take a bath, 3. watch a film and have a good cry, 4. write poetry, 5. do yourself a tarot reading.

https://www.midheavenmoonrise.com

Instagram – @freyja_astrology

Please meet Ellie – a vegan cheese wonder! Seriously – if the one thing stopping you being vegan is cheese this will solve that dilemma for you! My mantra in life – if in doubt, eat Kindaco cheese! Ellie has kindly shared a simple recipe we can all try (I have done Ellie’s cheesemaking course and it is phenomenal, so I’ll definitely be trying this!)

One Ingredient Cream Cheese

Aka yogurt cheese, aka Labneh

 

This method has been around for hundreds of years, and works really well with a soy yogurt. If you’ve got the patience to wait a few days the result is a cheese that’s firm enough to shape into a ball and present on a cheeseboard.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large pot (approx 400g) Unsweetened Vegan Yogurt I like using this one from Tesco

Method:

  1. Line a sieve with cheesecloth and place over a large mixing bowl. Don’t worry if you don’t have any cheesecloth, you an also use a clean tea towel (that really thin one you’ve had for ages is perfect) or you could use a muslin facecloth. I’ve even used kitchen towel before but you have to be very careful with it as it goes pretty soft when soggy, so something material is preferable if you have it.

  2. Pour the whole container of yogurt into the lined sieve and cover loosely with a tea towel. Leave to drain for 12 hours.

  3. After 12 hours check the consistency of the yogurt. Stir though some salt to taste, around 1/2 tsp. If you’re looking for a spreadable cheese then it’s ready! You can eat it straight away or it can be stored for a few days, in a container in the fridge.

  4. If your aim is a cheese you can shape transfer your sieve set up to the fridge to continue draining for another 12 hours.

  5. After 12 hours check the texture again, it should be looking like the cheese in the third picture below. Again it’s your choice, you can stop here to eat your cheese, or continue for a slightly firmer texture.

  6. If opting for firmer you can now remove the sieve and bowl set up (a relief if your fridge is usually stuffed full like mine) and switch to what I’m coining the “lined mug method”. Gather up your muslin full of cheese, place a few squares of kitchen roll around the base of it and pop the lot in a mug in the fridge.

  7. You can leave it like this for another day, check the kitchen towel and change for fresh sheets if it’s very soggy. The result is a lovely little cheese, which holds it’s shape. You do have to be quite delicate with it, it’s a ball of cream cheese rather than a bouncing cheddar. In the pics below I carefully flipped it over onto a serving board, smooth side up, and then sprinkled a little seasoning over the top.

Best eaten straight away but you can also store the cheese for up to 4 days in the fridge.

Recipe Tips:

I’ve tried drying out the cheese even more to make a really firm texture and it was like eating claggy rubber so I wouldn’t recommend longer than 2 days in total.

Substitutions:

  • You could use plain coconut yogurt or any other kind of unsweetened vegan yogurt. I’ve averse to coconut in anything cheese based – but if you fancy it then give it a whirl.

  • If you wanted to make a sweet cream cheese then you could use any kind of sweetened yogurt. I haven’t tried this but would be interested to hear how it turned out!

https://thekindaco.com

Instagram – @kindaco

Blog – https://elliephoebebrown.substack.com

Please meet Ellen – founder of People Plants Wellbeing. A gardening and wellness guru!

Nature therapy (also known as Ecotherapy) is something that everyone can practice for positive health and wellbeing. Nature therapy can be any number of activities combined or just one activity that brightens your mood. Of course gardening is therapy but it also includes exploring and adventuring in nature, crafting with nature based materials, art work, exercising outside, evening nature spotting and star gazing, working or volunteering for community projects in green spaces and so much more.

Being outside and active in the natural world has so many benefits from lowering blood pressure, easing anxiety and depression, to improving cognitive abilities and a whole lot more but research has shown that just looking at a natural environment can be beneficial. So observing the outdoor world from a window can improve your mood, speed up recovery (for example if you were in hospital) and have better job satisfaction, motivation and productivity if you can gaze at nature from your workspace.

You might not always feel inspired to get outside, especially during the colder months of the year but perhaps it’s exactly those times that it’s even more important to get your dose of nature therapy. It’s right outside your door – in your garden, on your balcony, at the local park.

So how can you get some nature therapy in your garden, even during the colder months of the year?

  • Get outside, as long as it is safe to do so. Put your coat and hat on if needed and go for a walk around your garden or check on your patio pots. Keep taking breaks for fresh air and engage your senses.

  • Take your morning cuppa outside, even if it’s only for a few minutes. Breathe in the fresh air, observe changes in your space. What do you see, what can you hear and most importantly how do you feel?

  • Sow some seeds, look after them. Every step of the gardening process is an act of self care – for you and the environment.

  • Do you have a tree in your garden? Give it a hug and thank it for the air you breathe.

  • If it’s cold, wet or snowy take a few minutes to simply look outside. Deep breathes in and out, clear your mind and know that spring is almost here.

If you’d like a whole weekend or to experience some wellbeing days, fully immersed in nature, where you can connect with the natural world on a deep level for positive wellbeing, check out People Plants Wellbeing dates coming up. Glamping in private woodland, you’ll can wake up to the sounds of nature and take part in activities such as guided forest bathing, foraging, meditation, massage, crafts and so much more. If you need a reset, these could be just what you need. I’d love to see you there.

https://www.ellenmarygardening.co.uk

Instagram @ellenmarygardening

Please meet Donna – the owner/founder of Gorse and Elder. Donna makes incredible herbal teas and other related goodies – she is such a beautiful soul! Calm and serene, I love being around her!

When I was asked by Sam to write this piece on how my area of expertise, herbalism and herbal tea links to wellness, my first thought was how is wellness actually defined in this current age? After a little research, the definition below from the World Health Organisation (WHO) resonated best with me.

“The concept of wellness is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

This quote brought back a memory of one of my first herbal training classes at The Natural Health Hut in Zephyrhills, Florida. My teacher, Master Clinical Herbalist, Rose Kalajian, told us (quite seriously, I might add) that herbal tea is much more than just tea. Herbal tea is a vitamin and mineral water, a natural energy drink graciously given to us by Mother Nature. Not only is it hydrating to our cells and connective tissue, it nourishes the body, mind and spirit. To me, this encapsulates the meaning of wellness.

Herbal tea is an everyday modality for initiating conversation, connection and comfort. This simple little cup of leaves, flowers and hot water has been associated with peace and tranquility. Bringing people together for thousands of years, in good times and in challenging times, in ceremonial groups and at an individual level.

When I feel the need to turn inward, herbal tea helps me. It’s a warm comforting hug at your disposal whenever you need it. Whether you are drinking it by yourself, or with others; tea gives you a chance to reflect, a method of safely releasing emotions; creating space in the mind and body to allow healing to start.

From my perspective, the simple act of making a cup of herbal tea is a powerful ritual that engages and activates all of our senses, giving us a moment to slow ourselves down. This is how our senses are stimulated when preparing a cup of herbal tea:

Sight selecting your favourite blend and drinking vessel, be it an ornate cup and saucer, a chunky mug, or a pretty glass for iced tea.

Hearing the sound of the kettle, boiling or whistling signifies the magic is about to begin!

Touch holding the cup of tea in your hands, and feeling the warmth or the coolness.

Smell inhaling the aroma directly into your olfactory nerve.

Taste tasting the delicate or strong flavours with your tongue.

These repeated actions, however simple, initiate a calming response in the body to soothe our entire nervous system, the spinal cord, parasympathetic and sympathetic nerves. You can literally feel the liquid reaching the places inside your body where the healing is most needed. Herbs have a magical way of inherently knowing where to go within the physical body!

Like an alchemist, I feel empowered, when I am creating a blend of herbal tea. Drawing upon my knowledge of medicinal plants and flowers, carefully selecting and infusing the plant material with pure intent and ancient crystal energies. I am creating a means of potential health and well-being to help bring somebody back to a state of homeostasis {wellness}.

As I reflect back on the WHO’s definition of wellness in relation to my area of expertise, I can say wholeheartedly that herbalism, particularly in my case, herbal tea, provides a state of, or pathway to complete physical, mental and social well-being, a cup of herbal wellness.

I will close with one of my favourite quotes by Rosemary Gladstar, an American Herbalist and pioneer of the herbal movement.

“The plants have enough spirit to transform our limited vision.”

I hope that the next time you prepare a cup of herbal tea, you too will feel empowered by its healing capabilities.

Stay happy and healthy!

https://www.gorseandelder.com

Instagram – @gorseandelder

So there it is – our first Glow with the Flow Wellness Blog! I hope you loved it and found a little glimmer of something new to try and some new fabulous people to follow!

If you would like to contribute to the next one, or know someone who may be perfect for it, let me know, or just send them the link and let them have a look for themselves.

I’ll be back next month with my usual thoughts and rambles – see you then!

Love and light,

Sam xx

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Sam Thornton

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