We sat down with Alana House from Buck Naked Plant Medicine to talk self-care, sex, and the role that herbalism can play in our lives.
How do you see self-care in your life as well as in your herbal practice?
Self-care is such a tremendously important aspect of being human. I'm grateful for the opportunity to reflect on this with you.
As an herbalist, self-care is important because I am living and seeing the results of what I am promoting with my clients. If I am not taking care of myself, my offerings will lack, and I have seen this manifest. My mind and intuition become dulled and I am not able to offer my deepest support and healing to those who I am working with.
I am a mother and partner. If I am not taking care of myself, I am trying to nurture my family from an empty well, which leads to depletion of all of us. If I am not eating well I am not feeding my family well, and if I am not taking time and space to replenish, then I am drained and irritable.
Self-care is so important because we are dynamic beings who live in a world with many stressors. I believe that the society we live in does not put self-care at the forefront of life and its easy to get into a daily rhythm of taking on too much while caring for ourselves too little. It wears us out and often times we forget that we need to replenish. If we are taking care of ourselves then we go into every day feeling full and able to give our all.
Any advice for integrating self-care into our daily lives?
Checking in with ourselves is the cornerstone of self care. For me, this looks like journaling and body scanning. I take a lot of time to journal, even if it means pulling over for a moment while driving, sitting down on a bench, or while walking, to jot down important thoughts and ideas, to process something that feels important, or to just dump thoughts and feelings out onto paper.
There is something so magic and real about pen to paper. Body scanning is a mindfulness practice that allows us to take a moment or two to check in with our physical and energetic bodies. I like to practice it in the morning and at night, while laying in bed. It's very simple. You just lay still and scan your entire body from top to bottom and back tot he top, noticing any discomfort or sensation. This allows you to notice small (or large) things that your body is needing. For example, you may notice that you are holding tension between your eyebrows or in your neck. By noticing, you have the opportunity to consciously relax those areas.
The other simple thing I recommend, which is hard myself and many of my clients is to remember, is to take your supplements each day. I have the tinctures that I take on a little shelf in my kitchen. That way when I get up to drink water they are there. If I keep that space fresh and lovely then I am more likely to hold myself accountable.
How can herbalism play a role in our love and sex lives?
This is a great question! I have spent a lot of time working with this, and believe in the healing power of plants in this way so fully.
There's the scientific way that the herbs used for this physiologically nourish and nurture the glandular and endocrine systems, balancing hormones and nourishing sex organs.
There are also the energetics of plants. The practice of using them brings us closer to our roots and intuitive knowing - our wildness. For example, rose - its taste, smell, and energetics - invokes love and a strong heart connection. Plants are sexy in their whole form, from seed to seed. When medicine is made with them in their whole form, the energetics of those plants are captured in the medicine. You are experiencing them more fully.
Tell us more about the new Love Potion that you're formulating for us and Plant Alchemy!
I am so excited about this formula! It is rich, sweet, delicious and sensual! When this idea was presented to me it felt, well, perfect! I have made many love potions throughout the years and feel like I have really gotten to know the plants that we are using. This blend is perfect for connection between lovers and for invoking a deeper self love.
The formula is synergistic and potent, combining my work and knowledge with the work and knowledge of the Plant Alchemy team. It has been a joy to co-create.
To read more about our Season of Love check out our featured products and blog pieces, click here.