Herbs for the Mind

by Susan A.Smith

A few years ago, my daughter complained, I do not want to grow up. All grownups ever do is sit around, drink coffee and blab. Then they get up and run errands. We do not have to live that way. The use of herbs in healing our lives of stress and tension can slow us down, re-establish our connection to the plants and bring us into attunement with the planet.

Here are ten herbs to ease your spirit:

1. California poppy - a tincture with antianxiety properties, improves sleep, chills out a moody teenager.
2. Hops - as a tea or tincture, acts as an antispasmodic and sleep aid.
3. Kava kava - a tea or tincture that is a nerve tonic, euphoric and counteracts mild depression.
4. Lavender - a delightful nervine, in O Happy Day tincture, or in tea. Use the flowers in a sleep pillow or put 4 drops of the essential oil in a bath to relax muscle tension, headache or nausea.
5. Lemon balm - a wonderful tea for anxiety (and antiviral to boot).
6. Motherwort - the tincture relieves the heart palpitations and anxiety of menopausal hot flashes.
7. Nettle - as a tea or tincture, restores adrenal health when you have pushed yourself too hard, too long.
8. Oatstraw - in an infusion, counteracts exhaustion caused by stress and useful in addiction withdrawal.
9. Reishi mushroom - a tincture that rebuilds immunity, alleviates anxiety, supports liver function and is antitumor.
0. Valerian - a tea or tincture to stop the bubble machine in your head at night, good for tension headaches and hyperactivity in children.

Herbal remedies can be our great allies. We heal our minds when we heal our hearts and feed our souls. Use visualization, music, journaling, hypnosis. Rest, play, eat better, pray, meditate, garden. Slow down. Breathe. Have a little fun.

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