We’ve all had times when the scent of something familiar launches us abruptly into the past—a time with someone special, the loving cuddly smell of a beloved grandparent, or a childhood vacation spot. And it happens immediately, bypassing any conscious thought. Biologically speaking, our olfactory bulb is part of the limbic system, that very ancient part of the brain where emotions, memories and motivations are stored. That’s why smells, feelings and memories become so easily and intimately entangled.
I can easily identify certain smells which take me from the present moment. Chanel No. 5 reminds me of my 16th birthday. The scent of Plumaria lands me at the Honolulu airport for my very first trip in Hawaii when I was 25. The smell of a campfire brings up wonderful memories of Pinecrest Lake where I spent so many summers with my family. I I know many moms, myself included, who have teared up when they catch a whiff of Johnson’s Baby Powder.
Where do certain smells and scents take you? Hopefully to fond memories of joy, fun and special people. Share with us your stories. I’m very intrigued with this magical carpet ride of the nose!
Music has the magical capacity to transform our mood and may even change our life. Music revitalize us when we’re tired (think good ol’ rock and roll!) and calm us when we need to dial it down, especially in the evening. It sets the mood for a dinner party or a romantic evening. Music also encourages daydreaming and more creative thinking. Music unlocks memories from years past as well as soothing our parched soul today.Try turning off your TV (or newstalk radio) and put on some favorite music and notice how much better you feel. While at work, I listen to www.pandora.com. You create a music station based on your tastes and moods in music, and Pandora also introduces new artists to the listener. I encourage you take a music break and notice the magic it creates for you.
To magic in your life! Cherryll
Well, it’s raining this week in northern California. I love the rain. The smell of rain–fresh and clean. The sound of rain tapping on the garden shed outside. The feel of rain as chilled wet drops hit my face. Even the taste of rain….now that’s pure and refreshing! Watching rain as its hits the ground, it seems to bounce up. All my senses are at play when it rains.
While many find rain inconvenient to our busy lives, I feel more alive. It reminds me we live in a natural world that simply ignores those previously calendared (outdoor) events. It heightens all my senses and puts me more ‘in touch” with what is around me. I notice cloud formations and where the sun is or isn’t. I am more focused on my driving and my surroundings when I’m outside during a rain storm. I feel more alive, more connected to the world and to life through my senses.
How alive and aware are you of your surroundings? When you enter your home after being gone for several hours—-how does your house smell? Look around your rooms and notice the pictures you hung years ago. Do you still like them? What about the taste of a fresh apple—-can you tell the difference between a Gala and a Braeburn?
Our senses guide us, enrich, and enliven our world, our life and our spirit.
“If you atrophy one sense you also atrophy all the others, a sensuous and physical connection with nature, with art, with food and with other human beings, “Anais Nin observed.
I encourage you to come alive and experience your day fully with your senses. If you don’t like how your home smells, buy candles, potpourri or simply open a window! Rearrange your pictures, putting them in different rooms. Wear that cuddly red scarf a friend knitted for you (and you’ve never worn) when you take a walk in the rain. Soak in a bubble bath tonight. Besides, if there was something you were saving (like those candles, nice soaps, clothing, new recipe to try), today’s the day—after all, it’s raining!