I’m always excited to learn new modalities of healing (ugh yes, I’m totally guilty of indulging in a little Goop Lab!). Lately, my focus has been on developing my intuition (and honoring it), clearing spiritual blockages, and nourishing the confidence I have in who I am and what I feel. Something that I’ve struggled with is feeling isolated in these pursuits, however. There aren’t surplus opportunities to, say, attend a breathwork session in my area. Sometimes, it can feel like if my pursuits are happening in isolation and I don’t talk much about them, are they really happening? Are they really real?
Of course they are.
I’ve been trying to mitigate this feeling in a few ways. For one, I surround myself with books about the things I’m most interested in (I know, not the same as live people!)—but books have always had the ability to take me pretty far. Also, I try to be as present as possible with the natural world around me. This includes spending time outdoors (obviously) as well as allowing myself to go into a state of flow when I’m cooking and working with fresh produce and turning to natural remedies as much as possible.
When it comes to that last item, I find that the intention and the ritual mean almost as much as the remedy itself. The care taken in creating the remedy, whether it’s coming from you or someone else, seems to infuse it with a little bit of magic—and I’m all for more magic in my life!
I was especially intrigued when I stumbled across Alexis Smart’s Flower Remedies, which embody the themes of nature, loving care, spirit, and ritual. When I heard of Flower Remedies, I immediately thought of floral face toners and essential oil roll-ons (i.e., pretty standard fare for us wellness chicks), so I was blown away to learn that the floral remedies are meant to be consumed under your tongue!
Using homeopathic principles honed by Dr. Edward Bach, M.D. in the 1930s, Alexis Smart created an array of floral remedy offerings that originally aimed to aid in everything from depression to confidence to stress.”During his years working in hospitals,” Smart says of Bach, “he observed that the patients who were unhappy returned again and again with recurrent illness. He sought a healing method that could treat the patient on a spiritual level, thereby encouraging the body to heal itself, and discovered the power contained in the blossoms of flowers.”
As Smart’s practice developed, she quickly realized that by treating emotional issues with flowers, patients experienced some physical changes, too. She explains, “years ago when I started treating people with flower essences one-on-one, I noticed when they returned after a month of treatment for a follow-up, they looked different. Their eyes were brighter, skin was more clear and toned, and they had a new vibrancy and charisma. I was prescribing flower remedies for my clients and their emotional conditions, but I witnessed a wonderful side effect: As people became happier, unblocked and unburdened emotionally, it was reflected in their faces and they looked much younger and more beautiful.”
Smart became adept at recognizing her client’s underlying emotional issues by examining their facial expression, the tone of their skin, how their eyes looked, and where their wrinkles developed. “I became intrigued by the potential flower remedies held for beautifying,” she adds.
“What if we could achieve similar results as botox and fillers with the use of flower remedies? It made perfect sense. Our mothers always warned us, don’t make that face or it will stick like that. Well, it’s true. Repeated facial expressions (which are the result of our inner emotional state) will eventually become the face we show to the world.”
Smart explains that there are a few common beauty/emotion issues she consistently sees in her practice. Resentment, she says, can cause a downturned mouth and prominent nasolabial folds. Meanwhile, stress and workaholism can contribute to 11 lines between the brows while acne, she argues, can be connected to inner shame. The idea of flower remedies, however, isn’t to try to target our facial bugaboos, however: “We must treat the spirit first and the face will follow, reflecting the inner harmony we feel.”
While my own experience has taught me that chronic physical conditions like acne are often endlessly complex—factors like diet, hormonal balance, genetics, and environment all have a role to play—I’ve also found that when we discover ways to lift our spirits through ritual and self-care, we may be in a better position to benefit from whatever additional healing modalities we pursue.
I have to admit that I’m certainly tempted to try one of Smart’s Flower Remedies. Something I have struggled with my entire life is shyness and social anxiety. I never thought these were treatable, and I’ve believed that they’re just in the fabric of my being. I’ve even stopped considering them outright flaws but rather challenges. Thankfully, aging and experience have helped me evolve into a relatively more confident person, but there’s still room to own myself, for sure. For example, I have a fear of using people’s names when I greet them in person and default to a generic (and safe) “hi!” It takes me several weeks of knowing them to finally use their name! It’s not that I’m bad with names (I’m wrong about someone’s name about once every six years), but I shake (literally) at the thought of a social screw-up. Wallflower then seems quite fitting!
For those struggling with feeling more confident in their bodies, Beauty Formula No. 8 may be spot on. The blend aims to heal the underlying emotional causes of premature aging, relax facial muscles, soften expression lines, and enhance magnetic beauty.
What do you think? Would you ever supplement with flowers?
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Photo: Alexis Smart Flower Remedies; Kat Kennedy