A Manufactured Condition
Humans have an uncanny ability for taking abstract nouns and turning them into something concrete. Words like lifestyle, belief, expectation, conduct. These things are not tangible, yet we are accustomed to forcing our very real lives into the confines of those terms.
Those of us fortunate enough to live in a first-world country know the expectations all too well.
We’ve built ourselves a lifestyle where constant stimulation is the norm. We’re surrounded by flashing screens of all sizes. Sounds of all frequencies. From a 2 story theater projection to a 2” lcd in our pocket. From the hum of traffic to the buzz of the refrigerator. We continuously barrage our brains with information. We’ve forgotten the sound of silence and we never truly disconnect.
Our manifestation as the ultimate observer comes preprogrammed with an intrinsic hunger for stimulation. That hunger often overtakes us and gets misplaced as a result.
This is the fuel for our worldly addictions.
We live in an environment of extreme excess. The overabundance of choices in all matters leave us confused and overwhelmed. Our ever-connectedness plays a part in this as well. We are always just a phone call, IM or email away. We upgrade from 5 tangible friends to 300 internet friends. We can fire a communication across the world in an instant with the push of a button. This new league of friendship is always there. Always approving, or criticizing, or giving us fodder for our own inexplicable need to judge others. We feel needed. We feel appreciated. We feel superior. We feel seen.
“We are all inclined to judge ourselves by our ideals; others by their acts.”
- Harold Nicolson
We build intricate avatars and parade them into public. Not just online, but into the “real” world as well. A happier, smarter, more interesting, more perfect version of ourselves. Our public personas project an expectation we can never really live up to. There’s our real life, and then there’s the publicly shared highlight reel.
A lot of effort goes into this facade. Keeping up appearances ultimately wears us down. We know we need relief, but we equate downtime with laziness and self-care with indulgence. So instead of fostering self-acceptance and allowing ourselves respite we push ourselves to work harder, earn more, be more. We tell ourselves it’s time to relax, but our responsibilities and worries creep back into our head every single time. So instead of resting we fold laundry, or work on a project, or worry, or obsess, or plug in and partake in mindless pretend play with other avatars.
We find ourselves lost in the same emotions and behavioral cycles over and over again. At best these cycles are feckless, at worst they are downright destructive.
In our quest for constant stimulation we become numb to the subtle yet miraculous language of the universe. We lose the ability for mindfulness. We fill our time with monotony and gratuitous exchanges. But hey, at least we’re keeping BUSY.
Why is it so hard to break this cycle? Why is it so difficult to pursue balance? If we only had _______ we’d feel satisfied. If only the time was right. If there were more hours in the day. If we made more money, exercised more, ate better, were kinder, applied ourselves, became more focused, acted more outgoing. The list goes on and on.
Only then would we be worthy of rest. Only then will we invest in our own well-being. Why is it so difficult to convince ourselves that we are worth it? Why do we push aside the irrefutable fact that self-care pays for itself over and over again in the form of improving every other aspect of our daily life?
How do we rectify this situation? How do we rebalance our lives and take a substantial, worthwhile break from our modern-day cultural constructs? Surely we can’t be expected to just toss our electronics, our connectedness and everyday responsibilities out the window.
These things DO serve a valid purpose and are an integral part of our world. Undoubtedly they will remain an important facet of the human experience both now and into the future.
Floatation Therapy is Concentrated Tranquility
Floatation therapy is the antithesis to the constructs of modern day civilization. It is the yin to the yang of ever-connectedness. It provides desperately needed balance and allows us to then function happily and properly within the realm of modern humanity.
A float tank session consists of the removal of ALL stimulation. Sound, light, stress, pain, tumultuous thoughts - and even gravity.
Floatation therapy is synonymous with sensory deprivation - but that is not as scary as it sounds. In fact, it is quite beneficial - and for most people, incredibly pleasurable.
Floating in the quiet dark, our mind is lulled into a meditative state. The internal dialogue eventually quiets. The body, free from all stimulation and no longer having to fight the pull gravity, releases a lifetime’s worth of tension. This is nothing like lying on a bed - there are no pressure points. No hot spots. The still, quiet water is the same temperature as our skin, we forget where our body ends and the water begins.
The mind is free from the distraction known as the body.
This is nothing in its purest form. The true meaning of the word unplugged.
In this relaxed and uninhibited state, we get to know and become more accepting of ourselves. We can page through our own story as if it were a book. Working through our past and discovering new insights about our very existence as we go along. We learn to accept our authentic selves. Not the avatars. Not the expectations we impose upon our external lives. In the tank we’re no longer limited by the confines of our culture. In the tank we define ourselves from the inside out.
“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.”
-Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
When we forget about the physical world, we realize we are so much MORE than just our body. The tank sets us free.
Once free from gravity, anxiety, pain, tumultuous, addictive and destructive thoughts - we focus our life energy towards healing ourselves.
This healing applies to both the body and the mind.
We are reminded of what it is like to live without pain. We are reminded of what it is like to be without worry. We find peace and contentedness in the quiet dark. Just knowing that these things are possible has a profound influence on our life out of the tank. We carry the experience with us, back into the real world - and that makes all the difference.
Concentrated tranquility IS the prescription for balance. An incredibly simple answer to a very complex human condition. One great thing about this experience is there are NO negative side effects. The worst that can happen is you won’t care for it. The best that can happen is it profoundly changes your life.
Overstimulation is the condition. Floatation therapy is the cure. For about $1 a minute, peaceful infinity can be yours.