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Herbs to help your focus, clarity and drive

The modern busy lifestyle of juggling work, family and relationships means that our exposure to so called ‘stress’ is high, affecting our inherent focus, clarity and drive. Just as we need to support and train our physical body to make it strong and resilient, we also need to support our mind. Awareness, consciousness and experience all contribute towards how the mind learns, processes and reacts.

In Ayurveda, India's ancient health system, an individual’s sense of consciousness is known as ‘buddhi’ and it is this that helps us to determine and discriminate, ultimately manifesting in our actions and state of awareness. It’s likened to a mirror that can ‘reflect’ the truth and help guide us to our true ‘Buddha’ nature. Ashwagandha and tulsi (Holy basil) are two key herbs in Ayurveda that can help build resistance to stress and enhance the mind.

In Ayurvedic medicine, ashwagandha is known as a ‘rasayana’ meaning a rejuvenative. Rasayanas enhance both the quality and quantity of life, nourish the mind and enhance vigour; a truly superior rejuvenative tonic to the whole body and mind. Interestingly the Sanskrit word ‘ashwagandha’ is translated as ‘the smell of a horse’ which reflects its ability to bring you the essence of a horse; strength, stamina and focus.

Tulsi is a very special plant. For thousands of years it has been worshipped by Hindus, who consider it to be an avatar of the Goddess Laxmi. Many Indian villages dedicate shrines to the plant and also use its bark to make meditation beads. Tulsi supports emotional wellbeing and eliminates the ‘blues’. It brings mental clarity whilst also relaxing the nervous system, clearing mental fog and calming a racing mind. It restores adrenal glands which have become exhausted by trauma, depression or anxiety through modulating our internal stress response. A truly clarifying herb.

Meet the author

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Katie Pande, Senior Herbal Advisor

Katie is a qualified Medical Herbalist, and member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists (NIMH), currently practicing in Shaftesbury. She holds a BSc (Hons) in Herbal Medicine and a BSc (Hons) in Plant and Environmental Biology.

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