Everyone likes to be full of energy and feel prepared to tackle the day. But many of us aren’t very good at maintaining high levels of energy and wakefulness throughout the day.
Instead, we often get in habits of going up and down with our energy levels. We use stimulants to boost and uplift our energy to get our tasks done, but then we crash and feel equally low energy for awhile.
So how do we keep consistent levels of wakefulness and energy, without the crash?
The solution is to nourish our bodies and minds. And essential oils can help us maintain high levels nourishing energy if we know how to use them right!
Below you’ll find a list of 14 essential oils for energy, followed by some simple blends and applications that you can use. We’ll conclude with some additional non-essential oil based natural remedies for increasing energy and wakefulness.
Another all around good oil is lemon oil. Lemon oil is great for anxiety (a big energy drain) and it can significantly reduce fatigue with its ability to invigorate body and mind.
Ginger is a warming oil that opens the heart and instills feelings of self-confidence and self-esteem. Its oil’s stimulating effects on the body and mind also invigorate the senses and increase vitality and energy. A simple way to use ginger for energy is to mix 3 drops with 1 teaspoon of carrier oil and massage onto the feet, or simply diffuse 3 drops in a diffuser.
Eucalyptus oil is stimulating yet cooling, It refreshes and stimulates the brain, clearing mental exhaustion and fatigue. Simply diffuse 5 drops to clear any sluggishness from the air. Another method is to mix 6 drops of eucalyptus oil with 1 teaspoon of carrier oil and massage into the chest area.
Peppermint is a commonly used oil and occupies a place in most aromatherapists medicine cabinet. This oil refreshes and uplifts, helping to reduce mental fatigue and improve concentration. It truly awakens the senses. Adding 2 drops of your shower gel in the morning is a great way to stimulate and refresh your senses in preparation for the day to come.
Rosemary oil acts as a brain tonic and clears and refreshes the mind. It clears mental fatigue with it’s brain stimulating qualities. A simple and enjoyable way to use rosemary for wakefulness is to diffuse 4 drops in your home or office.
Pine oil has an invigorating effect on the body and mind, which helps to clear out mental and physical fatigue. Diffusing 3 drops in your home or office will help revitalize the nervous system to produce a clear mind. Pine oil is also recommended in cases of depression. Pine oil creates feelings of happiness and joy while increasing self-confidence and overcoming feels of unworthiness.
Geranium oil is one of the better-known oils for promoting emotional balance. It helps alleviate mood swings, restore calm to the mind and promote general feelings of well being. Geranium oil supports a balanced nervous system, especially in times of stress. You can add 15 drops to a 300ml spray bottle filled with water and spray over the upper body when needed.
Basil oil has an uplifting effect on the mind, It helps to clear mental fatigue and easily promotes alertness. It’s well known for supporting focus and concentration. Basil is both calming and warming, which also makes it a great support for anxiety and nervous debility as well as depression. It’s effective at relieving headaches and migraines as well.
Angelica oil instills strength of character and is good at relieving indecision. It’s also beneficial for restoring strength, stamina and normalizing energy levels in the body. If you suffer from physical weakness this is one of the best oils to use.
Lavender is a tremendously useful all around essential oil. It has many therapeutic actions that bring positive effects to both body and mind. While not highly stimulating, lavender can help reduce stress and tension which can leave you with plenty of extra energy. Lavender is such a good oil all around that any time you use it you are likely to get a good deal of side benefits too!
Grapefruit is a fantastic mentally uplifting and refreshing oil. It helps to ease a stressed out body and mind while it’s powerful stimulating properties to help to provoke positive feelings of hope, happiness, and peacefulness.
Orange oil is a major emotionally uplifting oil which helps to lighten and refresh them mind while relieving tension and stress. It’s hard not to have a positive outlook when under the effects of orange oil!:)
Black pepper is a fantastic warming oil with an ability to combat poor circulation and treat sluggish digestion. It helps enhance concentration and improve memory loss. It’s a great oil to use before exercise for it’s ability to improve exercise performance and training by preventing pain and stiffness in muscles. Simply mix 4 drops with 1 tablespoon of carrier oil and massage into large muscle groups before working out.
Bergamot is a great emotional reliever. It promotes emotional well being by supporting the release of anger, frustration, stress, and anxiety. Bergamot is also wakefulness promoting and eases symptoms of low energy and depression. It boosts confidence and instills feelings of strength.
Essential Oil Blends for Energy and Wakefulness
Now let’s move onto some blends and preparations so you can get the most out of your oils.
Simple Bath Energizer
Simply add 8-10 drops of rosemary or pine oil to your daily bath/foot bath
Simple Inhalation Energizer
Using a portable inhaler, a tissue or a diffuser inhale eucalyptus, lemon or rosemary (you can also use any of the other recommended oils for this)
Simple Massage Pick Me Up Blend
If you’re keen on massaging your oils into your body you can make a simple blend of the following oils:
- Put 8 drops rosemary
- add 8 drops pine
- 8 drops black pepper or basil
Add to 50ml of carrier oil in a 2 oz glass bottle
The Energizing Spirit Lifter Blend
- 20 drops bergamot, eucalyptus or lavender
- 15 drops grapefruit
- 15 drops ylang ylang, cedarwood or sandalwood
- in a 5 mL glass dropper bottle combine your oils
- Shake to blend
How to use:
- Inhalation: Place 25 drops in a small, nonreactive bowl. Place the wick of a personal inhaler and allow the wick to absorb the oil. Place the wick back in the inhaler tube and twist close the cap. Inhale whenever you please.
- Air Spray: Using a 4 oz glass spray bottle combine 75 drops of your blend with 1 tsp vodka. Fill the rest of the bottle with filtered water. Shake to combine and spray when needed.
- Bath: Fill up your tub with warm water. While it’s being filled combine 1 tsp milk and 5 drops of your blend in a non-reactive bowl. Add to filled tub and agitate to disperse the oil. Soak for 30 minutes and massage any floating droplets into your skin.
- Massage: Combine 4 tsp grapeseed or sweet almond oil and 8 drops of your blend in a non-reactive bowl. Mix well and massage over your body.
Debility Massage and Bath Oil Blends
- 20 drops geranium
- 15 drops rosemary
- 10 drops peppermint
- 20 drops lavender
- 15 drops sweet marjoram
- 5 drops basil
How to use:
- Bath: Fill your tub with warm whatever. While it’s filling combine 1 tsp milk and 5 drops of your blend in a non-reactive bowl. Add to the tub, agitate to disperse then soak for 30 minutes. Massage any floating droplets into your skin.
- Hand/foot/sitz bath: Combine 1 tsp milk with 5 drops of your blend. Add to basin full of warm water. Agitate to disperse then soak for 10+ minutes. Massage a floating droplets int your skin.
- Massage: Combine 2 tsp grapeseed or sweet almost oil and 5 drops of your blend in a non-reactive bowl. Mix well and massage over your body.
Additional (Non-Essential Oil) Recommendations for Boosting Energy and Wakefulness
An important note about boosting energy – I do not advocate consuming stimulants for an energy boost.
Because stimulants provide unsustainable forms of energy. You go up, you come down. Up, down, up, down.
Yes, many people ration their energy this way – but that doesn’t mean it’s an ideal way to live.
Instead, I recommend energy boosting tactics that provide steady, consistent, and non-depletingforms of energy.
And how do we do this? We seek out nourishment (and eschew stimulation).
Energy from Stimulation
Energy from stimulation is short term, quick, and draining to the body.
The use of stimulants forces the body to provide itself with an energy boost, right then and there. Common stimulants like caffeine, nicotine, refined sugar, and computer screens amp up the nervous system, hormone production, and blood pressure – which increases energy and alertness. We go up, but then we come down.
All of this creates a biological debt – as soon as our energy boost fades we are faced with fatigue and a need for rest and rejuvenation; a debt that must be repaid. But more often than not the debt is not repaid – which creates a vicious cycle of depletion.
Addiction to stimulation is a common, accepted, and reinforced norm in our society. But that doesn’t mean it’s without long-term health impacts – chronic exhaustion leaves its mark.
Energy from Nourishment
On the other hand, we have energy that is provided from nourishing our body and mind.
If we live and eat healthily and heartily we feel an abundance of energy throughout the day, all without resorting to quick pick-me-ups.
The best way to nourish our body and mind in a way that keeps us full of energy is to consume the right nutrients. Consuming enough whole, real foods with a healthy balance of fats, carbs, proteins and micronutrients means our body and mind are getting what they need to keep ourselves awake, alert and full of energy throughout the day.
This is a long-term path to vitality (unlike the fast paced, high stakes energy boost of stimulation) and doesn’t require that we create an energetic debt in the process.
Here is a (short) list of highly nourishing foods that provide a healthy, clean burning source of energy
- Bone broth
- Nuts & seeds
- Sweet potato
And here are some foods that stimulate and ultimately, drain energy
- Refined foods
- Sugars (added, processed)
- Dairy (processed)
- Meat (in excess)
Drink enough water
Okay, very basic advice here… But it’s important, and often overlooked.
Dehydration will tire you out… quickly. Of course you shouldn’t overdo your intake of water… I’m not recommending that you drink 15 glasses of water a day. Just remain aware of your hydration levels.
Make a habit of drinking some water (or tea) early in the morning after you rise. Also carry a water bottle with you throughout the day and be sure to swig some water before falling asleep (your body does a lot of regenerating and clearing out of toxins while you sleep.)
Get enough quality sleep
On that note, let’s talk about sleep. now Yes, I know this is another *obvious* recommendation. But again, it’s often the basics that we neglect. And getting enough sleep is, sadly, put on the back-burner in our go, go, go society.
Sleep provides us with our energy for the next day, after all. And without enough of it we become pretty grumpy (and ineffective) humans. So if you are getting too little sleep, focus on shaping your life in a way that allows you to sleep a comfortable amount each and every night.
A fun way to get excited about bedtime (especially for kids) is to have one (or a few) oils/oil blends to put in your diffuser around bed time. It really sets the mood and helps lull you into sleep. Valerian is a great oil for this, by the way! Another thing – notice that I emphasized *quality* sleep. Sure, you might be getting enough sleep – but how good is the quality?
- Are you going to bed late?
- Did you ever stare at a screen right before bed?
- Are you energetically wound-up late at night?
Your nighttime routine can have a profound effect on the quality of your sleep throughout the night.
I highly recommend that you spend the two hours before you fall asleep doing some relaxing activities such as meditation, yoga, reading or being intimate with your partner. Also, avoid eating later than two hours before you intend to fall asleep.
*Note: if your schedule means that you must use screens late at night, consider buying some blue blocking glasses. The blue light spectrum of computer and TV screens signals our mind to stay awake (replicates daylight) and blocks the release of melatonin in the brain (needed for healthy rest).
By wearing a pair of orange (blue blocking) glasses we can block out the blue spectrum rays. Alternatively, there are some apps that you can install on your computer (see: f.lux) that will take out the blue spectrum of light from your screen as it gets late.
Test for imbalances & allergies
Another potentially big energy drains are bodily imbalances (like low thyroid) and allergies (especially food allergies). If you have abnormally low levels of energy and aren’t sure why I highly recommend that you get some blood tests done to see if there’s an underlying issue lurking behind the scenes. For low energy/chronic fatigue I’d recommend the following tests:
- Basic Thyroid Panel / Complete Thyroid Panel
- Food Allergy Test (IGG) / Food Sensitivity Test (MRT – 150)
- Complete Blood Count (CBC)
- Blood Glucose (to check for Diabetes)
You can visit your doctor and ask for the tests done, or if you’d like to bypass the doctor visit you can click the links above and order the tests inexpensively online. Note: you’ll have to check to see if there is a draw area in your region.
DIY Quick Energy Snacks
Now let’s look at a few energy providing snacks that nourish, energize and motivate (without the crash).
Power Packed Ginger Brew
Every morning I brew ginger, cinnamon, cloves, turmeric and raw honey – better than any energy drink. I drink this through out the day. I just mix it all together in boiling water then leave to sit until it reaches room temperature.
Coconut Cacao Oil
- 2 tbsp virgin coconut oil
- 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp almond butter or coconut butter
- One small pinch of sea salt
To conclude I want to talk about supplements that can provide energy and wakefulness.
Since you’ve read this far you can probably already guess that I won’t be recommending something like NoDoz or to drink a redbull/coffee. No caffeine here. Just nutritious and nourishing recommendations for a solid, long lasting energy boost.
Omega essential fatty acids, omega-3s in particular, offer a great natural energy boost.
The fatty acids found in omega-3’s are very similar to the fat found in humans. There are two forms of omega-3 fatty acids that are particularly supportive and essential for balanced energy levels and healthy brain function. These are EPA and DHA.
Consuming more omega-3’s, especially in the forms of EPA and DHA, will have a marked effect on your energy, focus and attention. It is brain fuel! It should also positively effect your skin, eyes, digestion, hair, teeth… etc.
Here we have some more adaptogenic herbs as a recommendation for energy boosting.
Some adaptogenic herbs include:
- Gotu Kola
Adaptogens are so highly regarded because they help your body with what it needs right now. They can adapt to the bodies specific needs and imbalances and restore harmony. This means that if you are suffering from some condition that is giving you low energy these herbs will tackle the problem at it’s source and help the body to adapt.
B vitamins are essential to health and energy. They provide the raw fuel for well balanced cellular intelligence and functioning. Vitamin B help us extract energy from broken down food and promote healthy skin and hair while preventing memory loss. They also can treat and prevent migraines.
While it’s certainly possible to get your vitamin B needs to be met with your diet, many of us aren’t eating diets that are incredibly nutrient rich.
If you take a vitamin B complex supplement, especially with B6, B12, folate, you could see a large boost in energy and well-being. Vitamin B12 is especially recommended for vegetarians and vegans, as it typically comes from our diet in the form of fish, shellfish, dairy, eggs, beef, and pork.
This vitamin has been a pretty hot topic for health in recent years.
There’s been some serious research done on the relationship between low levels of serum vitamin D in the blood and the propensity for someone to develop depression and low vitality. This is especially so for people who live in climates that have little sun for most of the year.
Indeed, 10 million people in the UK alone are considered to be vitamin D deficient.
Those who are deficient in vitamin D can expect to experience the following side effects:
- muscle/joint pain and weakness.
- bone pain.
- tiredness or fatigue.
You can get more vitamin D by – of course, getting out in the sun. Or if that’s not plausible then you can take a daily vitamin D supplement.
Shiljit is a unique adaptogenic herb that is used to enhance physical and mental performance and vitality. It is also believed to improve the benefits of other herbs and supplements by enhancing their bio-availability. In addition, it is believed to increase protein synthesis, cellular growth rate, and energy absorption.
Shilajit contains 85 types of minerals, all in their natural ionic form, which had been previously absorbed by plants and returned back to the earth. This makes shilajit itself highly absorbable and helps it support the absorption of other herbs as well.
It’s powerful stuff and delivers energy and minerals deep into the cells. Many people swear by shilajit supplements it and it is considered something of a “secret sauce” for energy boosting and maintenance.
Develop the “Breath of Fire” (Pranayama)
The Breath of Fire is a breathing tool used in yoga to develop energy. It’s a bit hard to explain with words, so I’ll leave you with an explainer video.
Hopefully, you’ve found this post helpful. There’s plenty of applicable advice here that if followed should help you to regain some energy in your life.