This will be a short post about smells and how you can use them as an anti anxiety solution. As you might have noticed, smells can have some powerful emotions attached to them, emotions that are stored in you memory together with that smell.
Your mind took a snapshot of a moment somewhere in the past… that snapshot contains as much information as possible, information from your eyes, touch and smell! So when you smell a certain odor your memory activates the feeling or sensation you had when you first smelled it. This can take you back in time, even as far as your childhood, bringing up memories long forgotten. These attached emotions can be so powerful that they can actually override your current state of mind and act as a temporary anti anxiety remedy.
Imagine having found one of these smells and being able to override your anxiety whenever you want! All you have to do is go to the house or place of you childhood, go to one of your parents… and search for a familiar object from your childhood, once you found it… smell it! If it doesn’t do anything, search for the next one, it won’t be long before you find the object that will pull your memory back in time and bring you back some lost feelings and emotions. That object will now be a portal to that memory… and it’s yours to use it whenever you need it!
How it actually works!
The way our brain creates a link between emotions and smells lies in the way the different parts of our brain are connected. The olfactory bulb is what’s responsible for the perception of odors, this is part of the limbic system, an area so closely associated with memory and feeling it’s sometimes called the “emotional brain”.
The olfactory bulb also has an intimate connection to the amygdala, which processes emotion, and the hippocampus, which is responsible for associative learning. And that’s how these different parts of the brain work together to forge a special connection between smells and memories…
So if you’re ever in the neighborhood of you childhood home, take advantage of the opportunity by finding that one object that can magically conjure up happiness by the mere act of smelling it, create your own anti anxiety remedy!