When you’re about to lose your last good nerve, stifle the explosion and turn to an essential oil to prevent your bad mood from turning truly ugly. Use essential oils via a diffuser in aromatherapy, or apply a drop or two topically on your wrists, bottom of the feet, back of the neck or over the heart.
Certain oils require dilution in a base, or carrier oil. Others do well in a blend. Always use high-quality, therapeutic-grade oils.
Lavender is the go-to oil if you’re in a bad mood and need to calm down. There’s probably no essential oil more versatile, whether you require rest, mood elevation or anxiety relief. If your bad mood is brought on by PMS, lavender can help as well. Carry a small bottle of lavender with you at all times.
Like lavender, lemon oil is essential in more than one way. It’s another oil you should keep on hand. When diffused, it lifts your mood. It provides immune support and can even help you lose weight if you drink a couple of glasses of water with a few drops of lemon oil mixed in daily. In your household, use it in the laundry, as a disinfectant, wood furniture cleaner, or a silver and jewelry polish.
Bergamot is as soothing as a nice cup of tea — and if you’re an Earl Grey fan, that’s what you’re drinking. As an essential oil, it soothes as well as allows you to release negative feelings.
Clary sage received its name during the Middle Ages for its ability to clear vision. It also helps “clear” anxiety and depression. If a sour mood has your blood pressure climbing, clary sage may aid in regulating it back to normal levels. It’s another useful oil for PMS sufferers.
This holy oil is a great stress reducer. If your mood affects your sleep, a few dabs of frankincense can calm you down and help you get your rest.
Stimulating peppermint can lift your spirits anytime. It helps cleanse negativity from your mind and helps you see events in a clear perspective.
Chamomile is well known for its soothing and sedative qualities, and Roman chamomile is especially effective at relieving anxiety. German chamomile and Roman chamomile are different plants, and while they share many qualities in common, it is Roman chamomile you want as a mood enhancer.
Rosemary is for remembrance, and also for relief — stress relief. It is one of the most versatile of essential oils for body and mind. For the former, it relieves indigestion, respiratory issues and headaches. For the latter, it enhances memory and puts life in a proper perspective.
Don’t get mad — get focused. Sandalwood helps you relax, but also focuses your mind. There is a major drawback: The demand for sandalwood in perfumes outweighs the supply, so the essential oil is often adulterated and pure oils are extremely expensive. Because resources are dwindling in its native India, it is eco-friendly to choose another oil to lighten your mood unless you already have sandalwood on hand.
Vetiver is ideal for emotional grounding, exactly what you may need depending on the cause of your foul mood. It’s an oil that helps you relax and get to sleep. Known as “khus” in India, vetiver is found in various nerve tonics. If your mood has you on the verge of hysteria, reach for vetiver.
Wild orange invigorates you, so if you’re in a funk, this essential oil will accentuate the positive and brighten your outlook.
This tropical essential oil will not only lift your spirits, but it may also relieve inflammation and benefit your heart. It smells so good, Coco Chanel included it in her legendary Chanel No. 5. If PMS is a monthly challenge, ylang ylang helps regulate your moods and reduces PMS-linked acne breakouts.
Rather than turn to over-the-counter medications or alcohol to help deal with your mood — the latter is an especially bad idea — turn to the natural essential oils that have improved the spirits of people for millennia.
Jane Meggitt graduated from New York University and worked as a staff writer for a major New Jersey newspaper chain. Her work on pets, equines and health have appeared in dozens of publications, including The Daily Puppy, The Nest Pets, Horse News, Hoof Beats and Horseback magazines.