Last week I took a chance and tried something new – a float pod. Have you ever heard of floating? The pods which look like they’re out of the future provide a sensory deprivation experience to allow for relaxation while quieting the world around you. Imagine spending an hour floating on water so dense that you couldn’t sink if you tried. I hoped it would be a fun new way to relax but I didn’t expect the self-awareness and life lessons that came with the experience.
5 Powerful Life Tips I Found Floating:
1. Quieting our internal chatter takes conscious effort.
Have you ever noticed that our internal chatter runs with ease almost as though on autopilot? Floating in the pod I was surprised by how many times my mind went to my to-do list, or to recent conversations, or to what I planned to do later in the day. Occasionally my mind tried to drift to a project at work as well as add items to my shopping list. In the beginning I had to consciously grab the thoughts and let them go. Without checking my thoughts, they would have continued to run non-stop during my float time.
When we choose to let ourselves really rest or “just be” by quieting both the world around us and our thoughts within, we allow ourselves the margin necessary to recharge. If you’ve ever had your mind wonder while you were praying, talking to someone, or watching a show, you know how quickly autopilot tries to cause your mind to race. Scriptures says “Be still and know.” When was the last time you allowed yourself to truly be still? If it’s been a while, find time today or this week to let your mind be stilled along with the busy world around you. It’s truly a refreshing exercise!
2. Letting go is a choice.
Laying back in the water, I quickly felt tension in my shoulders and neck. Without even thinking about what I was doing, I was controlling how my head and shoulders impacted the water. I consciously thought through relaxing each part of me. As the muscles relaxed in my arms and legs, they were supported by the water. It took several minutes of consciously focusing on just simply breathing while I let go of control so that my neck and head could be free to float. That’s when I realized that what you don’t let go of can’t be supported.
Who else carries and manages what could benefit from support outside of you? Support could be right there, waiting for you to let go… support from family, friends, and especially from God. He already knows what you’re clenching in your fist that’s robbing you of your peace, joy, or even hope. One of the great benefits of floating is it helps you realize where you’re holding on to stress. If you close your eyes and quiet yourself for a moment, where are you holding on to stress? What are you holding on to? Inhale deeply, exhale even deeper. Uncurl your fingers, open your heart and let go. If letting go feels scary, pray for the courage to really let go.
3. Growth sometimes is just one step outside of our comfort zone.
Before my float time, I was instructed how to choose my environment. I could listen to ambient music and could leave the light in the pod on or off. When I first had made my appointment I remember thinking I couldn’t imagine even closing the pod door. The idea of choosing to turn off the music or the light seemed inconceivable. But, when I arrived, closing the pod was easy. Then much to my surprise, sometime into my float, I decided to turn both the music and the light off. The only sound I could hear was my own breathing.
The experience was freeing! Yet, had I not pushed myself just one step forward, I would have never had the experience. Often life gives us opportunities to experience something new or to grow. We need to choose to take the step beyond our comfort zone to experience what waits for us there. Is there an area that you’ve been feeling the nudge to step forward? Why not challenge yourself and take the next step?
4. What we soak in sticks to us.
While in the water, I wasn’t aware of the salinity of the water with the exception of the ease of floating. The water felt just like ‘regular’ water. It wasn’t until I rinsed off and dried my hair that I was reminded how we are impacted by our environment. What we float in, what we marinate in, impacts us if we don’t deal with it. When I rinsed in the shower after my float, I thought I had fully rinsed my hair. But once I began to dry my hair, I quickly I realized my mistake. The drier my hair got, the crunchier and stiffer it became. Not too different than us in life, if left unchecked, the environment and elements we “soak” in every day can leave us crunchy and stiff. Are you letting things stick to you that need to be rinsed off and left behind? Be careful what you let your heart and mind marinate in.
5. When our time is up, we can’t change how we spent it.
A gentle stream of bubbles circulated into the pod to let me know that my float time was over. As I stepped out of the pod I was thankful that I chose to let go of any weariness or stress and fully embrace relaxing. I was thrilled that I was able to turn off the music and the light allowing the world to fall completely silent. But, I also realized that my time in the pod was one hour regardless of how I chose to spend it. My mindset didn’t influence the time but it impacted my experience.
So too is the case for life. Every day we have exactly 24 hours. We don’t know how much time we have left in our lives only that our time is limited. Our mindset and our attitude won’t change the amount of time we have left, but it will impact how we experience the time we do have. If you like me would work to make the most of an hour that you’ve paid for an experience, how much more should you consider how you spend the gift of time today? Do you have adjustments to make?
It’s your turn:
My experience floating was all about putting self-care higher on my list. To be the best version of me, I’ve realized that I need to take care of me. How do you slow down and promote your own self care? What works best for you? I noticed that in the past few days since my float experience, I’ve had more energy, less stress, and more creativity. Additionally my quiet time has been enriched because my mind isn’t as cluttered. Click to comment and share how you practice self care. And, if one of these five aha’s hits home, be sure to share which one you needed to hear this week.
If you’ve been encouraged by this post, why not click to share. Someone you know may need a reminder this week to take better care of themselves or may need to hear these five life tips.
Until next time friend, be blessed!
You may also enjoy:
- 9 Things You Should Stop doing
- The Surprising Thing I Overheard at the Airport
- How sensory deprivation and floating impacts the brain (video)
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