A lump in your throat. Familiar feeling, right? This sensation is a physical manifestation of an emotional reaction to an outside stimulus. Often accompanied by a ‘loss for words’ or difficulty articulating a feeling, our body exposes this emotional stress. This post focuses on the throat chakra and proposes several essential oil and yoga postures that can help you find balance the next time you lose your words.
The fifth chakra, vishuddha, is located at the throat level and is represented as a 16-petaled blue lotus. It is responsible for internal and external communication and distills how we articulate our personal/spiritual truth, ambitions, desires, likes/dislikes, fears and purpose.
The throat chakra bridges the body mind connection, and when it is balanced, we articulate with eloquence.
Due to its location, it acts as an inverted funnel and filters the energy of the lower fourth chakras before compacting and moving all energy in to the intuition and universal consciousness demesnes.
Physically, the throat chakra is associated with the pharyngeal and brachial-plexi and is connected to the mouth, vocal chords, jaw, tongue, thyroid, parathyroid, hypothalamus, teeth, pharynx, palate and ears. It also links to the shoulders and neck. It is responsible for metabolizing all of the energies of the body including the systems that regulate temperature and growth.
Emotionally, the throat chakra impacts our ability to express ourselves openly and honestly. It grounds our minds to our lower chakras, allowing us to speak (or withhold) our expressions of safety, desire, creativity/emotion and love. A person’s dysfunction can be inward (yin) or outward (yang).
A blocked throat chakra can manifest itself as feelings of unworthiness, introversion and insecurity. You may find yourself unable to speak, or be afraid to do so.
“It can seem as though the filter between the discourse you have in your mind and what comes out of your mouth is not working, or missing entirely.” (chakras.info)
One may also experience an overactive throat chakra manifesting itself as aggression or unkindness. Physically, you may experience swollen glands, sore throats, sinus/ear infections or pain and stiffness in the shoulders and arms.
Balancing the fifth chakra…
Essential Oils for Fifth Chakra Health
Peppermint promotes self-expression and invigorates the mind. It opens up the airways and helps clear excessive mucus. Clary Sage boosts self-esteem and has natural anti-depressant qualities. It helps to balance hormones regulated by the thyroid associated with the fifth chakra. Ylang Ylang instills courage. Its delicate fragrance soothes nerves and promotes a sense of physical ease. These essential oils are available at Heart of the Village Yoga and are 25% off at this time.
Fifth Chakra Postures
Lion Pose (Simhasana) helps to strengthen the muscles of the neck, chest and face. It gives you the confidence to command yourself like a lion. Plow Pose (Halasana) squeezes out negativity by compressing the throat chakra. It opens the back of the neck and stimulates the thyroid. The gravitational pull of Legs up the Wall- Viparita Karani increases the flow of blood to the neck and throat area, stimulating the thyroid as well.
Utilizing essential oils is a beautiful and natural way to address an imbalance. Try diluting 2-3 drops of essential oil with your favorite carrier oil, placing a few drops in your hands, rubbing them together and taking a deep inhale. Then gently massage in to your neck, shoulders, bottom of your jaw and behind your ears. Try pairing one of the oils above with one of the suggested yoga postures for a double dose of essential oil chakra realignment.
You don’t have to have an extreme case of chakra imbalance for it to impact your life. Symbolic practices and habits can help you pause, re-calibrate and release stagnant or overactive energies. Steady practice, reflection and cultivating the witness self- just like in our yoga practices- will support us in overcoming the emotional rubbish (aka dukkha) that gets stuck in our bodies.
For a hands on and dynamically aligning experience, be sure to check out one of the awesome Chakra Aligning workshops offered at Heart of the Village Yoga!
Coming next month: An overview of the sixth chakra, ajna!