My sweet friend, Pam, inspired this post, as well as the speech I gave on Essential Oils 101 last week at my local Toastmasters club meeting. I had originally planned to write this post and then use it for notes for my speech, but then life happened, as it almost always does. So, I gave my speech, structured according to the Organized Speech outline:

A. Opening

  1. Captures audience attention
  2. Leads into speech topic

B. Body

  1. Main points – no more than 3
    1. Subpoint
    2. Supporting material

C. Conclusion

  1. Review or summary
  2. Call to action or memorable statement

The Organized Speech is one of 10 projects in Toastmasters’ Competent Communication guide. There is also a Competent Leadership guide. In previous lives, I spoke to dozens to hundreds of people at a time, representing a boss or teaching college students. For the past 8 years; however, I worked in a corporate office and then remotely as a consultant. Working remotely means conference calls with clients, which can be more difficult than speaking face-to-face. Being ultra careful to think before speaking, I developed the “um” habit as a mental pause. I started going to Toastmasters last fall and have already greatly diminished the “um” habit. The nicest surprise has been my fellow club members. We are each other’s support group and all working toward the same goal: to be better public speakers. My biggest joy has been watching the progress of my fellow Toastmasters. If you are interested in Toastmasters to help your professional and personal development, I strongly encourage you to check out your local club(s).

Disclosures and Disclaimers

My friend has been wanting to try essential oils for over a year, but has been overwhelmed by trying to narrow down all the information out there to where she feels comfortable taking that first step. She is not alone. Some of my friends have no idea what essential oils are. Others realize that essential oils are not plug-and-play. You have to know a little something about them to use them safely. Thinking about my friend and the outline for my Toastmaster’s Organized Speech, I used a few talking points for to give a 5-7 minute speech on Essential Oils 101: what essential oils are, how to use them, and how they work. What follow is my speech, to the best of my recollection.

Essential Oils 101

Good evening, fellow Toastmasters and Guests. Essential oils are a multi-billion dollar business. Records of medicinal plants date back to at least 5,000 years ago. Modern day aromatherapy began in 1910, when French perfumer Marcel Gattefosse badly burned his hand during an explosion. Gangrene developed, and as a last resort, he removed the bandages and applied Lavender essential oil. The wound healed, and Gattefosse began studying the medicinal properties of essential oils.

I’m going to talk about what essential oils are, how essential oils are used, and how essential oils work, but first my disclaimer. I’m not a doctor. I don’t diagnose. I don’t treat, and I don’t prescribe, and I don’t cure anything. I will share what I know for your educational purposes only.

What are essential oils? Essential oils are distilled or cold-pressed from plant material – leaves, flowers, bark, fruit, etc. In the distilling process, the plant material is steamed over hot water, the vapor water and essential oils are cooled with cold water, and the end product is essential oils on top, floral water on bottom, because oil and water don’t mix. The essential oils are then separated from the water. Citrus essential oils are usually cold pressed. The essential oils reside in pockets in the fruit’s rind. Initially, citrus essential oils were literally squeezed out of the peels by hand. Today, the fruit runs through machinery that contains hundreds of tiny needles that puncture the peel, releasing the essential oil.

How are essential oils used? Essential oils can be diffused, applied topically or ingested. (Using a diffuser as a prop), There are many kinds of diffusers, but they work similarly. Fill the diffuser to the fill line with distilled or tap water and add a few drops of essential oils. Another way to inhale essential oils is to place a drop in your hand, rub it in with your other hand, cup over your nose, and breathe deeply in and out ( I used Young Living Essential Oils‘ Valor blend for this demonstration. A sneaky way to get some extra courage). You can apply essential oils topically (I rolled on Stress Away to my wrists and rubbed them together. See what I did here?), though some essential oils should be diluted with a carrier oil, like olive oil or grape seed oil. You can also ingest some essential oils by adding them to a beverage, cooking with them, or using them as a supplement (I held up a bottle of vegetable capsules). If the bottle of essential oil says do not ingest, don’t ingest.

How do essential oils work? Essential oils are very small molecules that can pass through all of our tissues and into all of our cells. Essential oils are absorbed into the body in 20 minutes or less. There are hundreds of essential oils, and they can help to support all our body’s systems. Essential oils are being used in hospitals, nursing homes and other medical facilities.

In conclusion, essential oils are distilled or cold pressed from plant materials. Essential oils can be diffused, applied topically and/or ingested. They are absorbed into our tissues and cells. If you would like to learn more, visit If you have any questions, feel free to see me after the meeting.

If you’re still with me, sweet reader, feel free to post comments and questions to this blog or send me a message via the Contact Oils & Spoils. I’d love to hear from you. If you’re interested in trying essential oils, click here.

I received several comments from my fellow Toastmasters. One recalled a blend that knocked his cat out. Another advised that Oregano essential oil tastes terrible. Oregano essential oil is best used diluted, whether in cooking, as part of topical blend or a supplement, as it’s considered to be a “hot”oil. Others were interested in learning more. Note to self: next time, bring more business cards. It really is about the education – whether becoming a better public speaker or sharing credible essential oils information – with me.

Oils & Spoils Update

Young Living Essential Oils February Promos (Freebies):  Going to be a little lazy here and share the promos information through a link to my last post, which debuted the Savvy Minerals Premium Starter Kit. I’ll share deets about upcoming changes to the essential oils Premium Starter Kit in my next post.