We are bombarded by a full diary, never-ending to-to lists, packed schedules, uncompleted chores and countless obligations. Our lives feel full to the brim, with work, family, kids, commuting, financial stress and other responsibilities. It’s exhausting! Luckily there are plenty of ways you can mitigate and manage this stress and one of the most effects ways people are doing this is with floatation therapy.
People float for many reasons but for most it’s to slow down and unwind. Being busy has been glamorised as giving people a sense of purpose, accomplishment and identity. As a culture, it feels we are realising more and more how unsustainable and potentially harmful constant busy-ness can be. Research highlights how stress can negatively impact memory, increase vulnerability to illness and disrupt crucial biological systems such as gut health. Isn’t this evidence compelling enough to do something about it?
Operating at such high stress levels for a prolonged period of time feels so normal for most of us that the idea of doing nothing for an entire hour can seem like a waste of time. We get it. If your threshold for stimulus has become so high that you don’t see the point of doing nothing, it probably means you need it more than anyone! There’s a Zen proverb that goes:
“You should sit in meditation for twenty minutes every day — unless you’re too busy. Then you should sit for an hour.”
The float tank is simply a piece of equipment, a tool. It provides you with a safe space to strip away the armor of being busy and actually take a good look at yourself, maybe for the first time.
Being left with your thoughts can sound a bit scary to some people. We use our busy schedules, a glass of wine or simple denial to dull the chatter; however, imagine how much you can discover by learning how to quiet the noise and observe your thoughts instead of participating in the storytelling. Yet, this doesn’t happen overnight—just like going to the gym once won’t get you a six-pack, it’s important to thread moments of quiet and time to do nothing regularly into your routine. That’s why we recommend you try floating at least 3 times to familiarise yourself with the experience and learn the art of relaxation.
In Tulsa, Oklahoma the Laureate Institute on Brain Research (LIBR) has dedicated research facilities to study the effects of floatation therapy. LIBR Director, Justin Feinstein, is looking to floating as treatment for different anxiety disorders. Preliminary results from a 2016 study also indicate that a person’s peak level of serenity occur 20-30 minutes post-float. It appears that your time in the float tank primes your parasympathetic nervous system and profound relaxation effects linger after your float is finished. This is why we encourage you to stick around for a cup of tea in our post-float lounge to really reap the benefits. We can teach ourselves how to slow down if we only let ourselves go there. It’s time to give yourself permission to let go and enjoy spending time alone, doing nothing. It really is incredible!
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 Bremner, J., Krystal, J., & Southwick, S. C. (1995). Functional neuroanatomical correlates of the effects of stress on memory. Trauma Stress, 527.  DeLongis, A., Folkman, S., & Lazarus, R. (1988). The impact of daily stress on health and mood: Psychological and social resources as mediators. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 486-495.  Konturek, P., Brzozowski, T., & Konturek, S. (2011). Stress and the gut: pathophysiology, clinical consequences, diagnostic approach and treatment options. J Physiol Pharmacol, 591-9.