There's lots and lots being written about floating, or float therapy, or sensory deprivation tanks, or isolation chambers, or R.E.S.T., or whatever else you want to call it. It's intimidating.
Writing down all the many benefits to floating could leave you with carpal tunnel syndrome. It seems so complicated.
But what if you want it simple and straight? Is there a way to hack float therapy?
Well, I'll give you the big reveal about one very simple way to float. It's not the only way to do float therapy, but I guarantee you it works. It's called passive floating.
But before I tell you what to do inside your float chamber for a successful float therapy experience, there are a few preliminaries to get out of the way.
Your first rule for looking like an expert at float therapy is really simple:
RULE #1: Listen to your float centre host. Do what (s)he says when it comes to getting ready to float.
So when she tells you to shower before you enter your float chamber, do it.
When she tells you to wear only your birthday suit inside your float chamber, do it.
When she tells you to make sure you visit the bathroom one more time before you float, do it.
It's that sample. No need for a cheat sheet. No need for long study hours. Just follow your host's advice.
Here are a few more things she'll probably tell you in order to get ready for your successful float experience.
What to do Inside your Float Chamber
Now that you've done everything your host told you to do, it's time to climb into your float chamber, lie on your back, and ready yourself for a great 90 minutes of floating.
If you are a floating novice, here's the secret to good results even on your very first float.
RULE #2: Do nothing.
That's right, do nothing.
Once you slide into the warm water inside your float chamber, you will find yourself floating with no effort. That's because the water is super-saturated with epsom salt. So, just lie back and go fully horizontal.
Then figure out what you want to do with your hands and your neck.
Your host will show you 2 positions for your hands: one with your arms straight and out to your side, and the other position with elbows bent and your hands and palms up, near your head. Choose what works best for you.
Then, pay attention to your neck. Just lean your head back, adjust your chin to figure out what head position makes your neck most comfortable. You can even try putting a little foam noodle under your neck, if that feels good.
Once you've figured all that out, you're well on your way. Remember to remain still in the water. You don't want t touch the sides of your float chamber, Just float.
Now comes the real challenge.
Still Your Mind
You know that phrase, "Listen to your heart". Now's the time.
You're floating in the dark, and your brain has nothing to see. The nerve receptors in your skin lose their ability to distinguish between you, the water, and the surrounding air. So, your brain has nothing to touch. Your float chamber and room are soundproof, so your brain has nothing to hear, except your own breathing and your heartbeat.
You brain will protest. It craves stimuli, and you are depriving it of what it craves. Your mind will start spitting out thoughts and worries and to-do's and reminders and forgotten facts, etc.
But you are just going to listen to your heartbeat and your breathing through all of that. It's hard not to get suckered into following those nasty thoughts down some dark wormhole. Don't.
You are going to pretend that your are calmly floating above all that mental chatter.
Soon enough, a surprise will come your way. Suddenly, you will notice your breathing slooow down. Your body begins breathing for you. The mental chatter dissipates. Words melt into silence.
It's like your body and mind have conspired together to give you a gift of deep relaxation. Just accept that gift.
When music wafts into your float chamber, to notify you that your 90-minute session is up, you come back feeling deeply relaxed.
As you step out of your float chamber, you will feel like your whole self just underwent a total reset. You won't be able to put words to it, but you can't help but notice a profound shift. It's subtle, whatever it is that has happened to you. It's a whole new level of relaxation.
In passive floating, it's the float chamber environment conspiring with your body and your mind to put you into that deeply relaxed state, without you having to work.
You can walk off to the post-float lounge smiling, knowing that you've just had a great float. And no one needs to know that you did nothing.
Now that you've experienced a great float, it's time to think ahead to your next float.
If that profound de-stressing is what you really want again, then review these floating procedures one more time prior to your next float.
And if you think you might want to explore some of the many other benefits of floating, have a look here at what still awaits you. Don't be afraid to talk to us about how you can optimize your next float session to experience some of these other benefits. We will gladly help you with a more active form of floating.
But, in the meanwhile, congratulate yourself on pulling off a great float. There was nothing to it.