Herbal Anxiety Support Series: Greeting the Allies, An Introduction

in homesteading •  11 months ago

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A while ago I shared about a native wildflower The Windflower and dug a bit into its energetic support of easing anxiety.

Many of you were intrigued by this and given my own relationship with anxiety and how I have found incredible support from herbs, I knew I wanted to start a series:


Herbal Anxiety Support

I will only write about herbs that I have experience with. All of them I have grown, all of them I have lived around and made/used the medicine of myself. I'll write from my personal experience and share how these allies have touched my life.

Of course, this is no guarantee of how they'll interact with you.

Me, Wren, Harvesting Ashwagandha Root last fall.

I find with herbal anxiety supports, people have different herbs that work best for them.

While some people will "take well" to skullcap, others may prefer valerian, and still others may like the gentler approach of chamomile or lemon balm and others will need the tonic building action of milky oat. Also there are different types of anxiety and all have different sources so we'll keep this in mind as we go through the herbs.


Anxiety

Oats, a fantastic nerve tonic
When I speak of anxiety, I mean the pervasive unease that is based in the nervous system that brings racing thoughts, feeling of shakiness, out of control emotions and fear. Many of these allies work on the nervous system. Some are nervous system tonics, others are gently calming in nature and completely safe for long-term use, while some are sedatives or have more of an immediate-relief effect and shouldn't be used extensively for long periods of time. Each are valuable in their role and hopefully in writing these we all will become more familiar with plants that we can be in relationship with as we grow toward healing.

I will say that herbal allies are a fantastic support as you seek other modalities of understanding anxiety.

For me, being in relationship with an herb and especially when I'm experiencing anxiety and I take an herbal remedy, it gives me SPACE from the experience and helps me perceive it in a different way.

When our bodies or minds react, it can be really difficult to feel that space and we can spiral further into the moment and feel that there's no way out. With these, we find herbal allies can help remind us to take a breath, ease into our bodies, step back and relax a minute and find strength to reflect on choosing a different thought-pattern or approach to the moment.

Herbal Allies don't do the work FOR you, but they assist you in doing your own work.

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Holy Basil/Tulsi

The Herbs


In this series, I will share an extensive plant profiles per post on the following herbs (in no particular order):

Skullcap
Lemon Balm
Valerian
Holy Basil
Ashwagandha
Milky Oat
Catnip
Motherwort

This is by no means an extensive list, but these are the ones I have lived experience with and I will write from the nuance of my experience and not just copy from a book (although I will use my herbal library for reference ;). I have grown each of these herbs and they're all quite easy to grow, in fact many of them come back year after year or re-seed readily, which makes them fantastic companions in the gardens!!

Herbal Medicine Making

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Ashwagandha Tincture

Most of the herbs I use for anxiety relief, I use in the form of a tincture. A tincture is the herb's powerful constituents in an alcohol (or glycerin) solution. They're very easy to make and I will share how to do this for each herb.

In creating this Herbal Allies for Anxiety Series, I hope to BRING EMPOWERMENT to many.

Herbal medicine is people's medicine and through growing your own herbs, making your own medicine, you're truly taking control of your healing and coming from an empowered place as a creator! With staggering amounts of people put on anti anxiety pills each year, we know this is a huge issue culturally. I hope to equip you to understand these herbs better and to feel inspired to grow them and use them as medicine or ally with those who are (we have many of these available for sale).


Nourish Tincture, A blend of Holy Basil & Milky Oat available in our shop

This is all to say that anxiety can be complex and I'm not telling you that these will be cure-alls.

Herbs act as gentle supports and other activities like breathing exercises, Emotional Freedom Technique Tapping, Positive Thinking/Affirmations, exercise, getting more sleep, balanced diet with adequate nutrition, drinking water, talking it out with a counselor/therapist/friend, surrounding yourself with supportive people, etc are all supplemental acts.

Anxiety can feel debilitating and many of us who are sensitive and who are inclined toward having nervous systems that are always on high alert either because of previous life events or our natural ways of being understand that anxiety can stop us from living the life we want to.


I know herbs can help. Stay tuned.


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I love that you said that "Herbal Allies don't do the work FOR you, but they assist you in doing your own work." People often assume or hope for a miracle herb that will solve all their problems and will get disappointed in their lacklustre results. It is important to understand the role is to facilitate the mind to heal itself. I like that call the herbs allies. I really enjoyed reading your post. I am following for more. :)

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yes! thank you! glad you resonated with this approach; it's the way i see it. there is no miracle herb, but certainly supportive allies who hold space for us and aid us on the path.. truly wonderful plant companions. <3

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Yes! That was my favorite part of this post too! The best thing we can do to combat anxiety is to understand where it comes from and adjust our lifestyle (if at all possible). But for those occasions where we can't change - the baby isn't sleeping, we're approaching finals in class, or we lose a loved one - herbs are an excellent tool in our toolbox of self care.

I am going to enjoy this series so much! Exciting!!

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YAY :D so happy to hear it!! i think it will be really fun to write; a good exercise out in writing down my experience. i really want to dig into expressing the uncomfortable feelings of anxiety and precisely how the herbs can help! they're all so unique and anxiety is such a rich topic that isn't talked about enough. time to destigmatize a bit more ;) xoxo

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You are right, it is a topic that is not discussed properly. I remember having an anxiety attack during a big business meeting - no one even noticed. I just sat there wondering if I was dying. I saw a doctor and learned what it was - I was embarrassed thinking it was such a weak ailment to have.

It kept happening and eventually I had to stop and question why. I refused medication and instead started listening to my body, taking long, long walks in the woods every day. In the end we changed our life quite radically (moving and leaving our jobs) and I haven't had an attack like that since. Traffic, crowds, certain family ... and anxiety still creeps back.

I would really like to incorporate herbs into helping me preparing for situations that I know are going to cause anxiety. I really am looking forward to your lessons! :)

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yes this weakness idea seems to be one we all have around anxiety. i think any "less emotions" like fear, anxiety, sadness get labeled as weak in our patriarchal capitalistic society based on growth and one upmanship, but as your story details, those emotions lead us to our true path away from these soul sucking systems that are externally imposed. so thankful for your journey and voice and all of your shares! looking forward to hear more of your journey over time!

the herbs have been a huge ally for me... seriously don't know where i'd be without them. they are my friends... grateful to share them and thankful you're here to witness. thanks <3

mmmmmmm holy basil!!!!! holy basil just sings to me!!!!!!! getting ready to plant multiple cultivars. tobacco, tulsi....cannabis....are some of my favorite allies. my goodness...just sitting next to them...makes me happy!!!! :)) i just love this post..and all you share....thank you WREN..and INNI! staying tuned!!!!!

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<3 <3 <3 we love you two too!! such resonance <3 !! so grateful for your plantings where you are! allies in every neighborhood, spreading the good plant love :) xox

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oh and osha of course ;) but that's a given yah? :)) lol.... cheers ya'll!!!

Fantastic series idea! So many people (myself included) deal with anxiety, but there are ways to calm it. I take Chinese herbs to help me with this and other issues, and they make me feel more grounded. I have no idea which herbs, though... I should ask my friend for their English names so I know what's in there.

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I would love to hear the names of your Chinese Herbs you take! Yes I agree so many of us experience anxiety and I just wanted to get it out here and talk about ways I’ve found that help with herbs!

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It does help when I take my herbs regularly. I don't even know what's in there... my friend/TCM does up a custom blend, so it has no names on it or anything. Next time I see her (at least a month from now), I'll try to remember to ask. Keep doing your thing! You're a blessing to the blockchain and this sweet planet we share. 💖

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awww sweet friend thanks! xx i am super curious so keep me posted ;) chinese herbs have helped me heal my menstrual cycle.. the herb white peony i find to be a huge help and also a grounding ally... so im so curious to hear your allies! preciate your words!

After a long hiatus, I'm back and so pleased to find you beginning this series. I look forward to reading it.

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Happy to hear it :) 💚🌿

Yes!! I need this information! Please do continue. I'm desperate for real relief.

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good feedback, thanks!!! <3

What a WONDERFUL resource!!! Indeed, our plant friends are MUCH better than the prescriptions available! Thanks for this excellent lesson, I look forward to seeing more. (Don't overlook sound - I LOVE binaural beats for anxiety attacks myself!)

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great point about SOUND :) yes! also forgot to list meditation, prayer, energy medicine like reiki etc... there is so much available to us!! thanks for sharing your input and EXCITEMENT :) your feedback is appreciated <3

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Thank you ❤️

I was going to ask but looks like your products are available here https://www.etsy.com/shop/mountainjewelbotanic
great post!

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yes, they are available there. thanks for stopping by!

This is a great series idea! You are absolutely right. "Herbal allies don't do the work FOR you, but they assist you in doing your own work". I don't take pharmaceutical drugs anymore. I rely on herbs to help me deal with all sorts of issues. I use lemon balm to calm me down when I have anxiety. I have not heard of using some of what you mentioned in the post. Great article!

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Thank you dear! I agree they’re just supports not the fix. Glad to hear of your use of lemon balm!

I enjoyed this read, informative and intriguing.
I would like to invite you to our discord group https://discord.gg/vDPAFqb.

When you are there send me a message if you get lost! (My Discord name is the same as here on Steemit)




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thanks! i joined the group and appreciate your invitation and comment :)

I love love love this post and am looking forward to your series....thankyou so much for sharing your knowledge! I have been on a journey of understanding the anxiety I’ve experienced and connecting the physical, mental and spiritual aspects. I’m looking forward to reading about your experience with each of these herbs.

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yes anxiety is so common for many of us, thanks for writing your comment. it's such a journey to delve into our experiences of anxiety and then find the allies on our journey and understand the roots. xo

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This!!! "Herbal medicine is people's medicine and through growing your own herbs, making your own medicine, you're truly taking control of your healing and coming from an empowered place as a creator!" Yessss!!! I'm so passionate about this. I love that you are teaching us to fish sister!!!

I respect plant more than ppl hehe nice response to the question

It's so great that you got this post happening! Yay!
Very informative and helpful!
Thanks so much!