How many of you have been in the middle of a float and found it nearly impossible to turn off the whirlwind of thoughts in your head?
It’s a very common experience and I know I’m not the only one who has found myself lying there wondering, “Why can’t I turn this monkey mind off?” A racing mind can be frustrating and extremely distracting from the essence of why we come to float in the first place: to practice slowing down and relaxing into the moment.
The mind is a beautiful, complicated thing and some say, is the last true frontier of exploration. Meditation, visualization and breathing techniques can help slow down the mental chatter we all experience when we’re floating; but with over exposure to technological stimulation, an increasing intake of caffeine, and a normalization of pain, it can make us feel like we have no control over the power centers within the brain. If you are someone who struggles with slowing down the mind, don’t fret! It’s completely normal, especially the first few times you float. Enter guided imagery and the practice of mantra!
What is guided imagery? Guided imagery is the practice of using mental visualization and/or an audio track to help you achieve a state of relaxation and train the mind for a specific outcome. A great example of how this can be highly effective is in a study conducted by Dr. Blaslotto at the University of Chicago. Dr. Blaslotto split people into three groups and tested how many free throws each group could make.
He had the first group do nothing at all. No practice, no visualization.
The second group actually practiced free throws every day for an hour.
The third group simply visualized themselves making the free throws.
After 30 days, he tested the groups again.
The first group did not improve which was expected.
The second group improved by 24%.
The third group improved by 23% without touching a basketball!!
Ask us about what audio tracks we have available to help you during your next float, or plug in your own custom audio anytime!
What is mantra? Mantra is the repetition of a word or phrase that helps to improve concentration of the mind and establish new thought patterns. Mantra is particularly useful in combating the chatter of an overactive monkey mind. An example of using mantra during a float is a repetition of the phrase, “I am whole and complete as I am” or “I am present to my healing”. The applications of mantra and repetition are limitless.
There is still so much that we don’t know about the complexities of the brain, but we do know that just like any other muscle in the body, it needs to be exercised in order for it to be strengthened and understood. Now our brain won’t ever completely shut off (as long you’re human, and alive, you’re going to have thoughts), but my belief is that in quiet spaces, our mental capacity expands, and the thoughts that come up are meant to teach us. Our task is to practice being unattached to the thought and direct our attention back to a mental exercise like visualization, mantra or technical breathing. Each time we direct our refocus our attention, it’s like doing a mental bicep for the brain. And with each “bicep”, our mental capacity expands.
You’ve got your gym membership to train the body, keep up with a float membership to train the mind.