Senses - the untapped health tool you have at your fingertips

Senses - the untapped health tool you have at your fingertips


The nervous system - the most vital interface? 

In today's rapidly evolving technological landscape, the way we interact with the world around us is also transforming. We are being compelled to learn new ways to adapt. The need to slow down, ground ourselves and reconnect with nature is greater than ever.

Human existence is a constant and complex interaction with both the external world and the inner self. We have evolved intelligent interfaces for this dynamic interaction, such as our nervous system.

The nervous system is arguably the most vital interface as it governs our behavioural relationship with our environment. At a higher level, the nervous system allows us to draw on memories, problem solve and develop relationships to flourish. 

How can we support systems such as this to become more resilient to the changes around us? A simple tool is already within reach—through our senses. 

Sarah from The Libra Lounge has shared with us all about how she taps into her senses as part of her wellness rituals. Sarah is a qualified Reiki, sound healing practitioner and Leith trained private chef  with over 17 years of experience in the wellness industry. 

Tapping into our senses 

In a world filled with distraction and disconnection we often forget the power that lies in the simple nature of our senses. When was the last time you savoured the taste of a summer strawberry, or noticed the texture of grass beneath your feet?

The natural world is in constant communication with us, reaching out to us in ways that encourage us to slow down long enough to notice the miracles that exist all around us.

I want to give you some simple tools that will awaken your senses, connecting you both to the external world around you, whilst also tending to your inner landscape. With practise, these tools will inspire you to tune in, cultivate stillness, and feel grounded. 


They say our eyes are the windows to our soul. So, my morning practise begins with natural sunlight upon waking. The key to a good night sleep is in regulating your circadian rhythm and this is triggered by morning light just upon waking. I like to make my morning tea or coffee and get out in the garden, come rain or shine. A barefoot walking meditation to connect all of my senses whilst getting that precious morning light. I notice the texture and temperature with my feet, I smell the morning air and the sun or rain on my face, I listen to the birdsong. This is a really easy practice to begin with and is a beautiful, grounding way to start the day.


The power of scent is deeply emotive. It triggers memory in a way no other sense does. This is because odours take a direct route to the limbic system - regions in the brain relating to emotion and memory. Smells can take us right back to our childhood or a time in our life that was joyful. 

Our lives are apparently dominated by the visual sense, but often smells trigger much deeper emotional responses. Olfactory sensations rule much of the behaviour and ecology of a myriad of animal species, including our own’ - Rinaldi, 2007

I enjoy using aromatherapy oils to engage my sense of smell, capturing or stimulating the mood I want to create. In the morning I may use bergamot orange to awaken and energise, in the afternoon I’ll reach for the grounding energy of cedar and in the evening I might turn to the ever soothing lemon balm, known for reducing anxiety and aiding in sleep. Plant materials have been used therapeutically for thousands of years to support us, with some being turned into teas, tinctures, oils or even herbal poultice. My invitation to you would be to work with these intuitively, as your body holds innate wisdom and if you listen closely it knows exactly what it needs. 


Taste is a sense we can all connect to immediately and one that brings so much joy. Savouring the first summer tomato may be the most anticipated moment in my household! There is nothing like eating seasonally that connects us more to the natural world and our surroundings. It's beneficial for us to eat the very best of what nature offers at that moment in time, while also supporting sustainable farming practices and reducing the distance food travels to reach us.

Eat foods that challenge your palette, such as bitter foods. Typically we avoid bitter or astringent foods but these flavour profiles aid in stimulating digestive enzymes and are filled with antioxidants. Exploring these flavours will expand your tolerance for them and you’ll soon feel the benefits they bring.

You could do this by foraging wild foods. This is also a beautiful way to connect with nature, when you’re out in the wild you can’t help but engage all of your senses…the smell of the earth, the taste of the berries, the sound of the birds, the vivid greens. It’s all so deliciously inviting!


Our nervous system development is shaped by sound; neonatal recognition of maternal and paternal voices, recognising emotions through tone, reacting to music. 

I discovered using sound as a therapeutic tool during an intense bout of depression. I found myself going to a sound bath once a week for respite from my racing and anxious thoughts. It has since become a foundational tool for both myself and my clients. 

Singing Bowls work by using brainwave entrainment which stimulates the brain into entering an Alpha or Beta brainwave, similar to the state during meditation. The sound produced by Singing Bowls provides a stable frequency that the brainwaves attune to, resulting in deep rest and nervous system regulation. If you are unable to attend an in person sound bath, you can listen to Tibetan singing bowls or even binaural beats. 

Chanting is another lovely therapeutic tool used to activate the vagus nerve. By humming or chanting you create a consistent vibration within the physical body. Research has found that singing in a group can improve immune function (source) and alleviate depression (source). Chanting has even been found to stabilise cardiac function (source).


‘Chanting allows us to integrate with the unfolding duration of the now’

Our auditory systems and our nervous systems are tuned for music. Perhaps we are a musical species no less than a linguistic one” - Oliver Sacks 


Touch is possibly my favourite sense. I have a self massage practise, so I use touch daily and of course touch plays a huge role in my treatment room where I offer holistic massage and facials. The healing power of touch produces a whole host of positive health benefits ranging from regulating the heartbeat and nervous system, to releasing oxytocin, aiding sleep and even supports us during times of anxiety or stress. 

Touch is also a way we can connect to the natural world around us. We can connect with the sensation of touch by feeling the ground beneath bare feet, the sun on our face or the ocean on our skin. Noticing the change in temperature, texture and comfort tolerance is a mindful way we can explore this.

Touch is also a beautiful way to connect with others. They say we need 4 hugs a day for survival, 8 hugs a day for maintenance and 12 hugs a day for growth. If you ever needed an invitation to go and share some hugs then this is it - you have no idea how it may change someone’s day.

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