Famed British writer J.B. Priestly once said, “I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.” What a beautiful sentiment! Each new day and new season really does offer us the opportunity to make new choices, new decisions, and to drive different outcomes, but sometimes it feels like a new start is almost impossible. Why? Our brains are literally wired to think and feel the same types of thoughts and feelings most days. The experiences we’ve had – and those we’ve witnessed others having – have driven “patterns” in our ways of thinking, doing, and viewing the world.

Our parents didn’t mean us harm, but they are the source of some of our dysfunctional patterns just the same.

Through observations of our parents, grandparents, and other role models throughout childhood, we learned lessons about how to navigate the world. Those lessons, or patterns of living, are literally stored in our subconscious, where they can drive everything from our tendency to jump to conclusions to our love of modern art.

Some patterns are actually easy to recognize. (Children of alcoholics are more likely to become alcoholics themselves, for example.) Others are more difficult. We acknowledge that mom taught us to sew or bake or to laugh at the drop of a hat, but we don’t always realize she also shared shame about her body, her lack of trust in others, and her quick temper. We feel horrible for lashing out at our children one busy morning and then carry the guilt of being a “horrible parent” for days after. We have no idea that such behavior is most likely learned, and being an unconscious pattern is therefore not our fault!

Once we come to terms with the idea that the majority of the destructive patterns we fall victim to (addiction, anger, codependency, the need to be right, etc.) aren’t a result of some fatal character flaw – we can take action to heal.

How? Start by releasing the guilt. Then, take inventory of the actions and reactions you wish you could change. Do you see similar behaviors in your siblings, parents, and grandparents? If so, know those patterns aren’t you. Like your elders before you, they’re things you’ve learned and can therefore, over time, relearn and totally change your mind about, as you reprogram new conscious patterns.

White Fir is an excellent essential oil to help guide this process. Known as the Oil of Generational Healing, White Fir can assist with “unearthing patterns from your body and soul. As they are brought to the light of consciousness, they can be dealt with and put to rest.”