I fully appreciate you will have received lots of information about how to cope during this challenging time. However, I thought I’d let you know a few things that I am doing, and which you may find useful to protect yourself and those around you at this challenging time with the Covid-19 virus.
1. Use an aromatherapy diffuser
Diffuse essential oils that are known for their anti-viral and immune system boosting properties. These include: lemon, eucalyptus, peppermint, lavender, frankincense, tea tree, cinnamon and lemongrass
A diffuser creates a healthy environment. Diffusing the right oils can create an antimicrobial and antibacterial environment that eradicates airborne bacteria in your home.
If you’d like some ideas for blends do let me know.
Yoga helps lower stress hormones that compromise the immune system, while also conditioning the lungs and respiratory tract, stimulating the lymphatic system
to rid toxins from the body, and bringing oxygenated blood to the various organs to ensure their optimal function …. Yoga works on everything.
3. Eat healthily
To give your body the right fuel to protect itself. I’m not an expert so you could consult (via the internet of course!) a nutritionist, but there is also a plethora of information on line and in the main just be sensible. Avoid alcohol as, sadly, it can weaken your immune system and make the body more susceptible to infections.
4. Try not to worry.
This is not meant to sound like a cliché! The current situation is not ideal, but our immune system doesn’t work as well when we are anxious or stressed.
The current situation may not be ours by choice and we may find it frustrating but, having had it thrust upon us, try to look at it positively. Enjoy the peace and slower pace of life. Take time to drink in a view (from your window or on a walk), read that book (or finish it!). Be kind to yourself. There are many harder things to be doing than having to stay at home for a while.
I saw this recently and thought it was a bit of a reality check:
Don’t be a stranger. It can be lonely at home for a long period of time (for me too!). If you’d like to get in touch, it would be lovely to hear from you.
Stay safe and well.
Many thanks for reading.
I found myself in January thinking again about a new therapy that had come to my attention in the summer of 2018 and last May 2019 at The Holistic Health Show and somehow seemed to keep popping into my head as I was so impressed and intrigued with it.
So, after a bit of deliberation, some research with the trainer and some positive conversations with therapists who had trained and were now practicing, I am very excited and pleased to tell you that I will be training in ScarWork therapy in March this year.
SCARWORK IN ACTION
ScarWork is the brainchild of Sharon Wheeler from Seattle, US. Sharon has been training and teaching for over 40 years, during which time she has developed an approach which has only been available in the UK since 2014. ScarWork is a gentle, painless approach designed to assist with scar and adhesion problems after surgery/injury.
HOW IT WORKS
ScarWork is a series of techniques to assist with reconfiguring the soft tissue, normally reducing the adhesions left by scarring and improving the scar’s appearance. Adhesions connect structures that should not be connected; this can restrict mobility and organ function and create pain. We do not yet understand fully how ScarWork works. Research is ongoing into the power of the light touch approach.
Everything in the body is connected by fascia; this means that if there is an issue in one part of the body, there is inevitably a cascading effect through the rest of the body, affecting function and structure.
“Consultant surgeons in my area are now starting to recommend ScarWork treatment post-operatively for their mastectomy and breast reconstruction patients.”
Emma Holly, International Therapist Magazine (Summer 2018)
Below: A mastectomy scar before and after ScarWork treatment
As the restrictions in the actual scar and/or the adhesions generated by the scarring free up during therapy, there is a consequent release of tension throughout the body.
This takes the strain off of joints, vertebrae, limbs etc and allows for a rebalancing in the body, normally improving posture and mobility. Releasing fascial restriction of nerves can assist in pain relief or restore feeling to numb areas.
It is not possible to restore correct balance and alignment to the body if there is a restriction in the tissues caused by severe injury and/or scarring.
For this reason, by focusing on the scars first; this allows for a more permanent result when addressing other physical problems. Further, the traumatic memory of injury/surgery often surfaces after ScarWork and this normally helps reduce internal stress level and improve your emotional balance.
“ This is a unique service. Feedback from patients has been fantastic”
Joan Follett, Nursing Services Manager, Rennie Grove Hospice Care
WHERE I GO FROM HERE
My course is in Wigan 9-13 March. Once I have completed it I want to get as much practice in as I possibly can to gain experience and build a successful portfolio of work.
If you, or anyone you know, wish to be a case study for me and have your scar (old or new) worked on please do let me know.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Many thanks for reading
My husband, Andrew, having already had a successful channel relay on 11 June last year, will be swimming the channel solo in June this year raising money for the following charities:-
1. Care for Kids, North Devon
2. Ronald McDonald, Bristol
3. The North Devon Wave Project
4. Kidney Research UK
If you want to, you can read Andrew’s story here
Wanting to do my bit to support Andrew, and the charities close to our hearts, I am offering the following throughout February:-
1. Aromatherapy back massage
2. Aromatherapy facial massage
for the AMAZING price of £12.50 for a 25 min treatment. All monies raised will go to support the above charities.
If you are interested in having a treatment, please contact me via the contact form on my website here
I look forward to seeing you soon.
Its Aromatherapy Awareness Week – how fabulous! A whole week dedicated just to wonderful aromatherapy. I love how an aromatherapy massage can make you feel and completely relax or uplift you, depending totally on which oils are used. So what exactly is aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is one of the most gentle and versatile of the complementary healing arts. It harnesses the natural therapeutic powers of essential oils to relieve a whole host of physical and emotional complaints ranging from stress, anxiety and fatigue through to insomnia, aches and pains (incl pain management) and problem skin conditions.
Essential oils are extracted from aromatic flowers, leaves, bark, roots, fruits and berries. They are complex substances that have many different properties. Like any other medicine, essential oils have a powerful effect and can chemically alter the body, albeit in a completely natural way! The oils enter the body via inhalation and by absorption through the pores of the skin. Once inside they enter the bloodstream and travel to different organs and body systems where they begin to trigger healing.
Essential oils are pure, plant substances which have been used for thousands of years so they can be trusted to help with our health problems in a safe and natural way.
As a qualified aromatherapist (qualified to blend oils) I am on The Federation of Holistic Therapists’ Accredited Register. Being listed on an Accredited Register demonstrates that I am committed to high standards of practice
The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) is the UK’s leading professional association for complementary, holistic beauty and sports therapists. For more than 50 years, the FHT been instrumental in ensuring high standards in therapy education and practice.
The FHT holds the largest Accredited Register of complementary therapists to have been independently approved by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.
An aromatherapy treatment is extremely relaxing treating both body and mind and is a completely natural therapy.
To celebrate and encourage you to try this amazing holistic treatment I will be offering 15% discounts on the following aromatherapy treatments:-
Aromatherapy Body Massage (pre-blended oils) – now £29.75
Aromatherapy Relaxing Facial (pre-blended oils) – now £25.50
Aromatherapy Body Massage (bespoke blend) – now £34
Aromatherapy Relaxing Facial (bespoke blend) – now £29.75
The pre-blended oils cannot be changed and are already mixed beforehand. The bespoke blend is made specifically for you just prior to your treatment.
This offer is available to bookings made between 10 – 21 June only. Excludes mobile bookings, gift vouchers, subscriptions and cannot be used in conjunction with any other offers.
I look forward to seeing you soon!
Many thanks for reading
Every year, Birmingham welcomes thousands of therapy professionals to The Holistic Health Show held at the NEC in May.
This is essential a trade show for therapy professionals who have the opportunity to see the latest seasonal therapy launches, whilst enjoying free educational talks on a variety of subjects.
There is also an ever-popular Chill Out Zone, offering taster treatments to visitors whilst raising money for a therapy based charity (this year it was Healing Hands Network, see link here for more details)
I attended the event with 3 of my colleagues from North Devon Hospice which was lovely as it meant we could all share, learn and experience together.
The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) of whom I am a member, also hold a Training Congress just outside The Holistic Health Show in the NEC
This meant my colleagues and I could sign up to and attend hourly talks on a wide variety of subjects.
All very thought provoking and extremely professional.
I had a fantastic Thai Yoga Massage by the Central School of Massage – see website here.
I also attended a talk by Kathryn Ellis, Advanced Practitioner at the Central School of Massage who also did some brilliant demonstrations.
It was great to have the time and space to actually think about where I’d come from and now where I would like to take my business. Being with other therapists (3 of whom also have their own business) meant the experience could be shared and chatter flowed very easily (not that it ever doesn’t you understand!).
So, now to update my business plan and marketing plan with a view to my long and short term goals and then to begin to set things in motion!
Many thanks for reading.
Have a very happy June!
Although it’s ok and totally natural to feel anxious at times, it’s important not to let those feelings get out of control. Over time anxiety can have a serious effect on our health and wellbeing. We’ve all got certain pressures, i.e. work deadlines, financial worries, specific events, as well as the usual daily challenges. Some self-help therapies can help you feel calm and soothe your nerves.
The adrenal glands, which are directly affected by stress, are responsible for the “fight-or-flight” response we feel when under pressure. This response is meant to be short lived, but in many cases it is a regular occurrence, leading to overworked adrenal glands.
In reflexology, the adrenal reflex is found just below the ball of each foot and also on the fleshy area below the thumb on the palmar side of the hand. Gently pressing these reflexes for a few minutes can help calm the adrenal glands and reduce tension. The hands can be worked at any time of day and the feet are best worked for about five minutes per foot before bedtime.
Aromatherapy is the use of plant-derived, aromatic essential oils to promote physical and psychological well-being.
The optimum way for the body to absorb the therapeutic qualities of essential oils is through a combination of inhalation and skin absorption, via a massage blend or bath.
Lavender is one of the most studied essential oils in terms of its relaxing effects. It has been shown to calm the nervous system, lower blood pressure, heart rate and skin temperature, as well as change brain waves to a more relaxed state.
Neroli, often referred to as the “rescue remedy” of essential oils, is also a valuable oil for helping to ease anxiety and stress, along with bergamot.
A natural facelift massage can release tension through the whole body when just the face is massaged. We tend to hold emotional stress is our faces, particularly in the jaw and temples, so gently massaging these areas using upward and outward circular motions helps to promote relaxation and reduce stress, while increasing muscle tone and revitalising your skin. It is easy to do yourself, using your favourite cream or oil after cleansing. Make it a daily routine to look and feel your best.
For all the above treatments you can find me on The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) Register here
I’m on both The Complementary Healthcare Therapist Register and the FHT Directory. Follow the link and put in my name – Sarah Butler.
The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT) is the UK and Ireland’s largest professional association for complementary, holistic beauty and sports therapists. Founded in 1962, the FHT has been promoting the highest standards in education and therapy practice for more than 50 years. Its Complementary Healthcare Register has been accredited by the Professional Standards Authority for Health and Social Care.
Many thanks for reading
Well here we are again with Christmas nearly upon us. I literally do not know where this year has gone. I feel its time for some reflection and to take a look back over the year, whilst also preparing for the year ahead. Here’s a summary of B2B’s 2018.
A dear client passed away at the grand age of 91 years. I had been seeing Kit each month for 2 years, but so glad she went without suffering. I will never forget her.
With three large pamper parties to organise and deliver, February was quite a busy month. Also attending Wellbeing Day at the Hospice which is always so enjoyable.
Heavy snow on the 2nd meant Hartland Spa was closed so no work for me that day! Although lovely to look at, the impact on getting around is never good. So glad it doesn’t last…..
Really getting stuck into the 160 case studies I needed to complete for my Aromatherapy and Reflexology courses.
Taking and passing my practical and written exams (x4) for my courses and so glad to pass all!
Writing up 160 case studies (it took me all month!) and finally finishing my courses. Being interviewed by The Guardian and having the article published (on line) on 6th June. You can read it here
Pamper party season so travelling out and about in the gorgeous Devon countryside in, what proved to be, the best Summer we’ve had in a long time.
After 2.5 years working at Hartland House Spa it closed its’ doors on 31st August due to retirement and its’ sale. I will always be grateful for the experience and knowledge gained there, as well as forming some lovely friendships.
Joining The Federation of Holistic Therapists (FHT), the leading professional association for therapists in the UK and Ireland for complementary, beauty and sports industries.
My busiest month of the year! Pamper parties, clients (in and out). A goodbye meal with the girls from Hartland Spa in Bude and Wellbeing Day at the Hospice. Also fitted in some back pain training with the FHT.
A belated honeymoon / much needed holiday in Kefalonia, Greece for two whole glorious weeks. Read 5 books, walked and swam a bit but not much else. Really felt I needed and thoroughly enjoyed. So good we’ve booked again for next year already!
Celebrating my birthday, 1st wedding anniversary and 3 years in business this month (soooo much food!)
A large pamper party at Webbery Barton Barn (visit the website here) at the end of the month was a lovely way to end another busy one.
A quieter month, but I don’t mind. It’s nice to have a bit of a rest after a very busy year.
Christmas again – where did the year go!
Wishing everyone a very Happy Christmas and all good things in 2019.
Are your energy levels dropping fast with the darker and shorter days? Its only natural at this time of year that some of us find our energy levels lower than normal. However, here are some quick self help tips to give yourself an boost to help you to deal with your busy life.
Best Foot Forward
Reflexology works reflex points on the feet that correspond to different areas of the body. Working these points can help to restore balance and improve health. Use the knuckle of your index finger to press and twist into the pituitary reflex point (middle of the big toe) for 15 to 30 seconds. This important gland regulates the functions of most other endocrine glands.
A vigorous scalp massage is a wonderful pick-me-up that can be done at any time to increase circulation to the head and boost energy. Simply rub, tap and massage your scalp and neck, working from the front to the back.
There are lots of energy points that can be accessed on the face. Massaging the “third eye” between the eyebrows and bridge of the nose can release stress, headaches and fatigue.
Use the first two fingers to massage clockwise and anticlockwise for 30 seconds at a time.
Prick up your ears
Massaging your ears can increase energy and create a sense of wakefulness. Rub the edges of your ears between two fingers from top to bottom a few times.
To promote mental alertness, use the tip of the index finger to apply pressure (for up to a minute) between your upper lip and nose, about a third of the way down from the nose. This is the “GV-26” acupoint, traditionally used in Chinese medicine as a first aid revival point.
Let me know how you get on.
Many thanks for reading.
Karen Young from The Federation of Holistic Therapists examines the health benefits of basil:-
Most of us associate basil with a hearty bowl of spaghetti Bolognese, but outside of the kitchen, this humble herb has been used for centuries to treat a range of common ailments.
A native of Asia, basil has a long history of use in Ayurveda, the traditional health system of India, for the treatment of coughs, colds and other respiratory problems. It has also been used as a traditional remedy for digestive complaints such as flatulence, indigestion, nausea and stomach cramps.
In terms of boosting mental health, basil is said to have a positive action on the nervous system, helping to reduce mental fatigue, ease headaches and improve concentration.
In contrast to prescription drugs such as diazepam, a recent study even suggests that basil – including the essential oil – can help to reduce anxiety without any sedative side effects.
The great thing for me is, now that I am qualified in aromatherapy, my knowledge base has grown so much. Oils I hadn’t heard about or used or blended have surprised and delighted me (and I am sure will continue to do so).
One of these such oils is basil which has been a total surprise. If I get up in the morning and my head needs “clearing” (no I’d not been on the wine!), I’ve slept badly, got a busy day ahead or need to concentrate (excellent when studying) or just want to feel more “awake” I mix:-
Rosemary – for mental fatigue, stress, stimulates circulation (*see Precautions)
Basil – for mental clarity, anxiety, helpful for depression (*see Precautions)
Lemon – to lift the spirits, invigorates and revives
Please note, never use essential oil/s undiluted or consume or ingest internally. It is advisable not to use Rosemary after lunch as it can be too stimulating.
Do NOT use Rosemary or Basil if pregnant or lactating, have high blood pressure or epilepsy. Not suitable for children.
Do NOT use lemon before sunbathing.
Always consult your GP or Health Practitioner if unsure before using any aromatherapy oils.
Julia Lawless says of basil in The Encyclopaedia of Essential Oils:-
“Oil of Basil is an excellent, indeed perhaps the best, aromatic nerve tonic. It clears the head, relieves intellectual fatigue, and gives the mind strength and clarity.”
Basil is an antiseptic and especially good for spots. Something I didn’t realise, as usually its tea tree that would be the usual go to on the occasion that one appears! However, a drop on a cotton bud applied direct to the spot clears it up in no time.
Basil, as many of us know, tastes wonderful in cooking, but Basil oil is also a good source of Vitamin A, magnesium, potassium, iron and calcium.
Basically, it’s pretty damn good!
Thanks for reading. Until next time.
So I thought I would write about anti-ageing this month as it’s been on my mind for a while now.
What exactly is “anti-ageing” anyway? What does it mean? Why should we be? How can we be? These are all questions coming into my mind whilst thinking about this subject.
I know there has been a lot of murmurings in the beauty industry about the term anti-ageing. Should the term anti-ageing be banned completely from the beauty and cosmetics industry. Is it dated? Is it offensive? Does it send out the wrong message?
Why should we be anti it? To be honest even if we are, there’s really not much we can do about it is there…. is there?
I’m sure the term anti-ageing mainly came out of a beauty/cosmetic industry marketing ploy to lure the consumer (mainly women) into purchasing their products to make themselves look “younger”.
I’m also pretty sure that whatever you buy, be it lipstick, hair product, face cream etc etc cannot actually turn back the ageing process. But we women sure do fall for it.
Of course, then there are the other things you can do to try to look somewhat younger than you are, i.e, Botox, fillers, facelift etc. The trouble with this stuff (in my humble opinion) is why do people want to look younger than they actually are. Maybe that’s a silly question, and I guess the media etc have a lot to do with it, but I feel we should embrace getting older and all it brings with it.
Kate Humble is someone I really admire. She spends a lot of time outdoors, has a healthy glow and yes has lines. To be honest, however, it would be a bit weird if she didn’t. You just don’t get to a certain age and have no lines whatsoever. The best thing about Kate is she is always smiling and her eyes sparkle. A mature lady can look amazing whatever her age.
There are many things we can do to keep ourselves in good condition/younger looking and the main one is to keep as healthy as we possibly can. Get outside and exercise, drink plenty of water/herbal teas, eat sensibly, look after yourself physically and emotionally. Do what makes you happy and have fun. Laugh, dance and be yourself.
Of course, we are but mere human beings and, whilst most of us may do all the good stuff most of the time, there will be times we don’t. But I’ve come to the conclusion actually that’s ok. Life is to be enjoyed. There is no good and bad, right and wrong, this way or that.
Just do your best to look after yourself and embrace getting older. Ageing is a privilege, not something to be ashamed of or to hide.
Oh by the way, I’m nearly 51 years old and proud to be so.
Some people don’t get that far, but I’m one of the lucky ones. Happy days!
Until next time……