Bach Flower Remedies A to Z
The person who needs Agrimony will appear cheerful and positive, even in the face of challenging circumstances, hiding their struggles under a facade. They do not deal well with conflicts or “negative” emotions within themselves or in their environment, so they will use strategies of denial or distraction to avoid them. They are often considered sociable and pleasant company—even the life of the party! The person may, in some cases, resort to alcohol, drugs, and other addictions or distractions in order to cope with the uncomfortable aspects of life.
Keywords: Chronic cheerfulness, joviality; hidden torment, worry; wearing a mask, a facade; emotional suppression
Positive state: Accepting all aspects of the self, authenticity of expression, ability to navigate conflicts
The person who needs Aspen has fear of the unknown, vague premonitions, or the feeling of dread that something bad is going to happen. The fear will be vague and they will typically not be able to explain what they are afraid of. They might just say that they have anxiety or an anticipation of evils to come. The person may feel spooked or be excessively focused on the ghosts and the supernatural.
Keywords: Fear of the unknown, the supernatural; vague fears, anxiety and dread of unknown origin; dread of bad things happening
Positive state: Courage, fearlessness, feeling grounded, appropriate connection to the spiritual
Beech is for those who are critical and intolerant of others. The person may come across as irritable and will tend to nitpick or focus on the small details of others’ appearance or behavior.
Keywords: Tendency to criticize, judgmental intolerance, irritability with a focus on details, nitpicking
Positive state: Tolerance, acceptance and appreciation of individual differences
Centaury is for people who typically come across as very kind and accommodating, sometimes to excess. They tend to be people-pleasers and may have difficulty setting healthy boundaries or saying “no,” especially when in relationship with dominant individuals.
Keywords: Difficulty setting boundaries, saying "no;" people pleasing, subservience
Positive state: Self-care, self-determination, willpower, ability to set healthy boundaries
Cerato is for indecision, confusion, and a lack of trust in one’s inner guidance. These people will have difficulty in making decisions and will look to others for answers. When faced with an impasse, they may call up all their friends and loved ones, collecting opinions, and typically coming out none the wiser.
Keywords: Difficulty in making decisions, lack of trust in one's intuition, tendency to seek others' opinions
Positive state: Clarity of inner knowing, confidence in one's ability to decide what is true and best for them
Cherry Plum is for fear of losing control, for those who feel that their mental composure is about to break down. In extreme cases, the person may feel that they are at the end of their rope, or about to snap or lose their mind, or even commit an act of violence against themselves or others. They often engage in obsessive-compulsive behaviors as a way to maintain control over their inner experience.
Keywords: Fear of losing control, loss of control, emotional blow ups or tantrums
Positive state: Composure, calm, spontaneity
The person who needs Chestnut But will have a tendency to repeat the same mistakes over and over. Think “same girlfriend, different haircut!” This can happen in any area of their life: school, work, relationships, and even in a tendency to catch repeated colds. It is as if there were a defect in the capacity to learn and retain. They may also have difficulty in processing or letting in information. For this reason, it is often given in cases of attention deficit disorder.
Keywords: Tendency to repeat the same mistakes, difficulty in processing information, memory and attention deficits
Positive state: Ability to process information, see one's mistakes, learn and change accordingly
The person who needs Chicory can be a great nurturer and caretaker but they also have a tendency to control their loved ones, unconsciously expecting that their love will be reciprocated. Their love can be smothering and possessive. When they feel that they are not getting what they need, they may go into self-pity and start blaming others, or even get sick from a subconscious need to get attention.
Keywords: Tendency to control loved ones, possessiveness, self-centered or smothering love
Positive state: Selfless and unconditional love, lives and lets live, recognizes and appreciates others' freedom
The person who needs Clematis escapes from the present moment by daydreaming of a more exciting or pleasant reality. They may seem like they are in their own world, distracted from the task at hand or from what is happening around them. This often results in an appearance of spaceyness and in clumsiness. The remedy can be given for cases of attention deficit when the person is a daydreamer.
Keywords: Distracted, daydreaming, in one's own world, unfocused
Positive state: Presence, interest in and engagement with life, fulfillment in the physical realm
Crab Apple has a sense that there is something wrong, dirty or contaminated inside them. They may experience shame, embarrassment, disgust, and even self-loathing. They may also focus excessively on their appearance. They can be perfectionists about themselves or their surroundings. This is one of the remedies to consider for germophobia, eating disorders, and other related obsessive-compulsive behaviors.
Keywords: Feeling dirty of contaminated; disgust; self-loathing; perfectionism, especially about one's environment or appearance
Positive state: Self-love, self-acceptance, appreciation for all the aspects of life, ability to perceive the beauty in all of creation
Elm is the remedy for overwhelm. Specifically, the person feels overwhelmed by a perception of the enormity of the task at hand. Although typically competent and productive, they may get into circumstances where they realize they have taken on more than they can handle.
Keywords: Overwhelm, inability to face the task at hand, perception of the enormity of the task
Positive state: Feels capable and confident, sees tasks in proper perspective, knows that help is available
Gentian is for temporary discouragement, disappointment or doubt, or for anyone who has a chronic tendency to be discouraged easily and stop trying. They tend to see the glass as half full. This includes pessimists who feel that they shouldn’t bother because things won’t work out anyway. This can also be given in temporary states of mild exogenous depression—in other words, when sadness has been triggered by a disappointing external event.
Keywords: Disappointment, discouragement, doubt, pessimism
Positive state: Faith, optimism, confidence that things will work out in spite of setbacks
Gorse is the remedy for hopelessness and resignation after a long struggle. This state is often experienced by people with long-term disabilities and chronic and terminal illnesses. They do not feel that anything can help them so they give up. They may make efforts at the request of their loved ones but they don’t really believe these will come to anything.
Keywords: Hopelessness and resignation after a long struggle
Positive state: Hope, optimism, acceptance of one's life and challenges
The person who needs Heather has a high need for attention and contact with another person. They will tend to be self-centered and self-absorbed, talking much about themselves and usually monopolizing a conversation. They are oblivious to the needs of others and tend to drive them away as a result.
Keywords: Loneliness, neediness or need for attention, overly focused on one's own needs, difficulty focusing on the needs of others, loquacity
Positive state: Ability to listen, to step into others' shoes, and to be present for others
Holly is for jealousy, envy, competition, and a strong dislike or even hatred towards someone whom they feel has harmed them. The state is often experienced as a red hot anger toward that person, or even vengefulness, a desire for them to suffer in equal or greater measure. This state may lead to suspicion or distrust toward others. It can be a great remedy for sibling rivalry or when a child is having a hard time with the birth of a sibling.
Keywords: Anger with strong dislike or hatred towards someone, jealousy, envy, suspicion, distrust
Positive state: Unconditional love, forgiveness, feeling of brotherhood/sisterhood with our fellow humans
Honeysuckle disconnects from the present by living in the past. It is a state of nostalgia in which the person escapes into thoughts about the “old” days because the past offers more comfort and interest for them than their present circumstances. They may be homesick after a move or a life transition.
Keywords: Living in the past, nostalgia, homesickness, yearning for something or someone that has been lost
Positive state: Presence, interest in and appreciation for the present, ability to embrace change
Hornbeam is a remedy for anticipatory exhaustion. Ever had “a case of the Mondays?” This remedy is exactly for that. The person will experience a sort of mental fatigue before even getting started. They feel dread or resistance to facing the task ahead, even if that task is small and mundane. This state often leads to avoidance and procrastination.
Keywords: Anticipatory mental fatigue, dread of facing a task, procrastination, that "Monday" feeling
Positive state: An energized mind and attitude, confident action in tackling the tasks ahead
Impatiens is the remedy for impatience. This person will tend to be very driven, a go-getter who likes things to be done fast. When the world isn’t moving at their pace, or when people aren’t getting with the program, they will tend to feel irritable, frustrated, or downright angry. They will likely step in and get the job done themselves, which makes them more fit for individual contributor than management roles in their work.
Keywords: Impatience, irritability, frustration
Positive state: Patience, gentleness, capacity to appreciate others' pace, needs and contributions
Larch is for low self-esteem and low self-confidence. This state leads to a fear of failure or a sense of being a failure. They may see others as more competent or talented than they are. They may also stop trying to do or accomplish things out of a conviction that they will not succeed.
Keywords: Low self-confidence, sense of being a failure, fear of failure, anticipation of failure, belief that one is not capable
Positive state: Self-confidence, willingness to step up and do one's best
Mimulus is for fears of all kinds, and in particular for fears of things that are known (as opposed to fear of the unknown). This can include the fear of animals, illness, death, and poverty, as well as typical phobias such as heights, snakes, and spiders. It is also very helpful in social fears and anxieties, including those related to public speaking, going to an interview, the first day of school or a new job, or any other setting where one feels that they will need to “perform” in front of others and they feel scared, nervous or anxious about it.
Keywords: General fears, phobias, and anxiety about known things; anticipatory and performance anxiety; timidity, shyness
Positive state: Courage, confidence, ease, relaxed openness to experiences
Mustard is described as a state of unexplainable melancholy or gloom that seems to come out of nowhere, often suddenly. The person may also report having mood swings. This type of state is often described as a hormonal-related sadness, for example during PMS in women. Sometimes this is referred to as endogenous depression.
Keywords: Unexplainable, sudden melancholy; gloom; mood swings with sadness
Positive state: Cheerfulness, tranquility, emotional stability
Oak is for people with a strong sense of duty who take on a lot of responsibility for others. They may be labeled workaholics because they have a hard time taking breaks and resting. They will plod away with consistency and endurance, not taking care of themselves, until their health breaks down.
Keywords: Strong work ethic with difficulty taking breaks; keeps trying even when it's time to stop; takes on excessive responsibility, eventually at the cost of one's health
Positive state: Healthy resilience, ability to balance work with rest and relaxation
Olive is for physical and mental fatigue from overwork or overexertion. The person will feel spent and exhausted. This can be a good remedy after long, difficult life periods when the person feels depleted, as well as during convalescence from an illness.
Keywords: Physical and mental fatigue from overwork, overexertion; exhaustion, depletion; convalescence
Positive state: Vitality, energy, strength
The person who needs Pine is experiencing guilt, self-blame and self-reproach. They may be focused on something—even a small thing— that they did in the recent or distant past for which they cannot forgive themselves. The person may even experience guilt over things that others have done, which they take on as their own fault. They may apologize frequently in situations that do not require an apology.
Keywords: Guilt, self-blame, self-reproach, takes on blame for things one hasn't done, excessive or inappropriate apologizing
Positive state: Self-forgiveness, ability to transform regret into self-acceptance and move on
Red Chestnut is for fear, anxiety or worry over the safety and wellbeing of others, and in particular loved ones. The person may be overly worried by a situation that is happening in the present, but they will also tend to imagine all sorts of negative scenarios that they project into the future. They will transmit their anxiety to their loved ones, shifting from care into over-care. Those around them may feel that the relationship feels suffocating or smothering.
Keywords: Fear, worry, or anxiety about the safety and wellbeing of loved ones, negative imagination of bad things to come
Positive state: Balanced and appropriate care for others, sense of security and trust
Rock Rose is for extreme fear, terror, and panic. It is a great remedy for crises of all kinds where the person is paralyzed or hysterical with fear, as well as post-traumatic stress when the experience of an event is re-triggered over time. The remedy is also well-indicated in the case of panic and severe anxiety attacks, nightmares, and night terrors.
Keywords: Extreme fear, terror, panic, panic attacks, severe anxiety attacks, paralyzing fear
Positive state: Courage, heroism, steadfastness
The Rock Water state is found in those who have too high standards for themselves, leading to rigidity and perfectionism. They put a lot of pressure on themselves to perform or be a certain way. They tend to be dogmatic in their ideas about the world and in how they live. They will often set themselves up as an example to others.
Keywords: Having high standards for oneself, perfectionism, rigidity, dogmatism
Positive state: Flexibility, adaptability, capacity for relaxed enjoyment of life
Scleranthus is a remedy for indecision and confusion when the person is divided between (typically two) choices. They will go back and forth, unable to decide, and change their mind frequently. Unlike Cerato, they do not seek out and rely on others’ opinions to get out of their impasse.
Keywords: Indecision, feeling divided between choices, fickleness, flip-flopping
Positive state: Balance, inner knowing, confident decision-making
Star of Bethlehem
Star of Bethlehem is for trauma and shock, as well as the grief that can follow after a trauma or loss. The person who needs Star of Bethlehem may seem passive, numbed-out, and shut down, as if the light had gone out of them. You can consider this remedy in cases of bereavement, heartbreak, breakups, accidents, a serious diagnosis, and situations when someone has received bad news. It is often given to mothers and babies to address delivery and birth trauma.
Keywords: Trauma, shock; grief, numbness, or other sequelae after trauma, shock, or loss; numb, shut-down state
Positive state: Rebirth and renewal, vitality, openness to life
Sweet Chestnut is given in cases of deep sadness and hopeless despair, sometimes referred to as the “dark night of the soul.” The person feels that they are at their limit of endurance and there is no hope left. Often this follows deep grief and stress over difficult life circumstances. The person has a hard time seeing that there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Keywords: Deep, hopeless despair, seeing no way out, the "dark night of the soul"
Positive state: Rebirth, renewed sense of hope, trust, and participation in life
Vervain is the remedy for enthusiasts. They will espouse a cause, an ideology, or a calling that they embrace with great passion, sometimes to the point of fanaticism and proselytism. They have strong opinions and want to convince others of them. They have a hard time stepping into other points of view.
Keywords: Zealous enthusiasm, fanaticism, dogmatism, inability to understand other perspectives, proselytism, attempts to "convert" others
Positive state: Ability to listen to and respect others' opinions, inspiration, judicious action
Vine is for people with a tendency to be bossy. They will frequently direct others, giving instructions or even orders to those around them. They often feel that they know what’s best and that they are just doing the right thing for others. They will tend to be bossy and dominant in relationships. In extreme cases, their dominance may feel effacing or abusive to those around them.
Keywords: Domineering, authoritarian, bossy, tendency to give orders
Positive state: Positive, effective and respectful leadership
Walnut is for oversensitivity to external influences and difficulty adapting to change. Those who need it tend to be easily thrown off their path or influenced by others. They may be susceptible to the opinions of family members, the events happening around them, and what they hear in the news. The remedy is also for difficulty adapting to change, which makes it well indicated after a move, a change in school or a job, or the birth of a sibling.
Keywords: Oversensitivity to external influences, difficulty adapting to change, life transitions
Positive state: Stability in times of change, ability to follow one's inner guidance in spite of outside forces
Water Violet is the remedy for those who desire solitude and lack interest in others. These people may appear cold, reserved, aloof, or even superior. They are simply not interested in socializing and feel quite satisfied being alone. Social circumstances will tend to feel draining to them.
Keywords: Reserve, aloofness, desire for solitude, lack of interest in others, sense of superiority, haughtiness
Positive state: Openness, ability to interact and share with others comfortably, humility
White Chestnut is used for repetitive, obsessive, anxious thoughts that go round and round in the head. The person may replay thoughts, conversations or the events of the day in their mind. In this way, they disconnect from the present and may feel unable to focus on the task at hand. In addition to anxiety, this state can lead to insomnia.
Keywords: Repetitive, obsessive thoughts; overactive, over-worried, overfocused mind; attention issues
Positive state: A clear and tranquil mind, constructive thinking
Wild Oat is for uncertainty or lack of focus regarding one’s path. These individuals might feel that they are unable to figure out their life purpose. They will tend to see and explore the many options before them, without committing to any one. This can apply to their work, their relationships, their hobbies or any other area of their life. For this reason, this state is often associated with fickleness, changeability, dissatisfaction and boredom.
Keywords: Uncertainty, confusion regarding one's path or purpose; fickleness, changeability, lack of focus in life; dissatisfaction
Positive state: Focus and sense of direction in life, clarity of purpose
Wild Rose is a state of apathy, a loss of motivation or interest in life. This person will come across as passive and “flat” or even depressed, or they may tell you that they are just fine and that there is nothing they need to do to improve their life. They tend to be low-performing and low-achieving, going through their days with little enthusiasm and making minimal efforts to get by.
Keywords: Apathy, lack of motivation or drive, loss of interest in life
Positive state: Motivation, devotion to a purpose, full participation in life
Willow is the remedy for bitterness and resentment. These people tend to feel that life has been unfair with them because it has dealt them a hard lot. They may compare their life to that of others who are happier and more successful. They will inevitably blame their life circumstances on external factors, not taking responsibility for their own choices. For this reason, this is an excellent remedy for those who have the sense that they are a victim or have been victimized by others. The emotional state tends to be a mix of smoldering anger and sadness.
Keywords: Bitterness, resentment, victim feeling, not taking responsibility for one's life and choices
Positive state: Taking responsibility for one's life, sense of personal power and agency