sink or float: my experience with float tanks

float-tankI’ve got to admit prior to my first floating session I was quite excited for the experience. I went in with the intention that I was going to have one of my best meditation sessions to date. Idealistically, I thought I would have this mind-blowing life altering epiphany from the whole experience. Welp, I guess in hindsight I got just that but not in the way I intended!

1:49pm
I arrived to the appointment early and eager to get started. After signing a waiver form agreeing that I would not sue the company I was then escorted to my private room. The room was lovely and had a nice calming zen feel to it. I shut and locked my door then laid out all my “goodies”. The night prior I had packed a bag full of essential oils, coconut oil, avocado oil, crystals, a portable speaker and some other unmentionables. Let’s just say I was very prepared.

2:08pm
My initial thought as I sunk down into the pod was that the water didn’t feel like 95°F (35°C). Little did I know things were just about to heat up. The first ten minutes were pretty relaxing. They played a serene ocean wave audio track to ease me into the session. Ironically, I spent the first four minutes fidgeting with the ambient light setting and the spaghetti noodle for neck support. I spent another three minutes trying to prevent myself from bumping into the walls back and forth like a ping pong machine.

2:15pm
Aww finally, stillness. After my ten minute warm up I was feeling relaxed and very comfortable. I began focusing on my breathing and then slowly drifted off into my meditation. All was well. Until…

2:25pm
Some ten minutes had passed by when I started to feel this sensation in my body. Was this my kundalini experience!! Not exactly. I was starting to feel flushed and the sound of my heartrate was amplified. I was feeling the onset of dizziness and nausea take me under. My mind felt distorted and expansive. I opened my eyes and couldn’t place whether the ceiling of the pod was 3ft in front of me or 5ft in front of me. I lost perception. I found myself floating naked in the pod, watching as the ambient light changed from deep red, peach, yellow, green, blue, purple then white. I lied there in a delirious state of mind until I could no longer bear the heat anymore. Gently, I managed to slouch up so I could reach the handle to the pod and let in some cool air; keeping in mind to be careful not to make sudden moves since I was already quite queasy.

2:38pm
I sunk back down into the half-opened pod, hoping that maybe the cool air would ease my symptoms. Again, I tried to nestle back into mediation with high hopes that I could focus now. Mind over matter, I thought. I should have quit while I was ahead. I continued on for a few minutes but my lightheadedness was worsening and there was no way I could concentrate in that kind of condition. I tossed the idea around of quitting the session early until finally I had no choice but to follow my gut feeling, literally. I got out the pod and immediately tip-toed over to the dark shower stall on the other side of my room. Thank goodness it had a shower bench built into the stall which was helpful in my time of disorientation.

To conclude, I think the shower was my favorite part of the whole experience…well the tea they provided at the end was pretty nice too! Overall, I didn’t have the meditative breakthrough I would have wished for but I’m glad I tried the float tank out. I’m not eager to give it another shot but I don’t think I would entirely rule it out. Let me know what your thoughts are on float tanks. Have you had an experience similar or different than mine?

10 Things I Learned From SXSW 2016

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  1. Say no to texting and drinking
  2. Always look both ways for pedicabs, trains, unicyclists, and dancing bears before crossing the street
  3. Jealousy is a recipe for disaster
  4. Doppelgängers do exist so double check you’re talking to the right person before you dish out your dirt
  5. Remember “PKW”. Phone, Keys, Wallet at all times
  6. Say no to seafood + food trucks
  7. Boots were made for walking. High heels were made for sitting.
  8. If someone comes up and offers you “blue or yellow” do walk away, quickly
  9. During SXSW free CD’s are the equivalent to candy on Halloween
  10. When in doubt take the main streets, alleys might be quicker but they’re a slippery slope downhill