Deprive to Revive!

So there I was, lying in a “sensory awareness” pod, floating in dense salt water. For the first 10 minutes, there is light and the sound of waves. Then darkness, and only the sound of my own breath and heartbeat.

The float was featured at a speaker retreat with the goal of emerging with clarity, peace and new ideas. The pressure was on. Could I shut my mind off for an hour in hopes of creating something really unique and original? For the first few minutes in the tank I was a bit freaked out, then calm…until the lights went out and them my mind went on overdrive:

What am I going to make for dinner? Stop that. Did I pack the kids’ snacks? Relax. I have an itch near my eye. Will I get salt in it if I dare touch it? Just breathe. Why do the Mavericks always lose in overtime? Focus! Dang, what time is it?

Rejoining the group was so disappointing. While my colleagues fiercely scribbled brainstorms, no new ideas surfaced for me and I sat sadly in front of a blank paper. Finally, I wrote the word “MOMENT.” Then I wrote, “not many moments for mom.” Hey, MOM is the first three letters in MOMent! Then, in the middle of moment, I saw ME!

There it was! We all need to put more ME into our moments. In thinking back, I had a whole bunch of ME time in the float tank, and I couldn’t relax. I couldn’t focus on my breathing. I couldn’t clear my head. The environment was perfect, yet I didn’t know how to begin. Scheduling “me” doesn’t come naturally for many of us, but hey it’s 2013. Come on, let’s go for it!

DEPRIVE your mind of all your crazy stimuli. Can you apply brain brakes? Stop dwelling on the past. Stop obsessing over what is next. Stop blaming. Stop checking Facebook (tough!) Step out of the Twitterverse. Quit scheduling. Stop everything except what’s going on here and now. For a moment…just be.

STRIVE to be MINDLESS. Of course you’re soooo busy! What can calm your brain? Yoga? Meditation? Quiet time? Add something different to your “To-Do” list- time for you! Mark your calendar for mind-free time.

REVIVE + THRIVE! Now that you’ve cleared the decks of your mind, what next? Enjoy your fresh focus! Did you get new ideas? Did clearing chatter help you hear anything new? Put your new energy into things that help make your MoJo flow. Then, for cripes sakes, schedule more of those things! Who says you can’t plan time each day just for you…don’t you deserve it? Listen to the sound of your own breath and heartbeat. You may be surprised at what you hear.

  1. Good post, Christine. I would suggest that what you’re describing is to be mindFUL rather than mindLESS. And the state of our busy minds may require more than 1 hour in the tank. Maybe you can carry the tank with you, in your mind, and give yourself a few minutes each day of non-thinking. Your schedule exceeds that of most mortals and quiet time may help you recharge.

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