Flotation Philly 

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of I visiting

Flotation Philly located in the Fishtown section of Philly. If you know a little about my health history then you know that 3 years ago I suffered a stroke, and that I have declared that this is my year for making huge strides when it comes to my health. I heard about
hTh

is facility from a friend at my yoga studio and it sounded right up my alley. My struggles in my

daily life post stroke are mainly cognitive rather than physical. Which is a blessing and a curse all at the same time! Basically for me too much noise, too many lights, too much chatter, too much of any stimulation going on can trigger me helpless. It’s literally too much for my brain to handle all at once. I think that is one of the reasons I have fallen head over heels in love with meditation. Meditation allows me those quiet, still moments of completely shutting my brain down in order to fully restore myself. 
After navigating my way, by myself ( woo hoo) to Flotation Philly I was greeted by the owner Russ and an incredibly intricate and beautiful mural as you walk in their front doors. From there Russ took me back to my room which contained my evolution float pod, a shower, and a vanity area for me to put myself back together after my experience.  
Russ started this business after first trying out flotation pods for himself and seeing the benefits to him and his body. I admire that. He didn’t start this business because it was the newest fad, or only to make money. You can tell from just one conversation with him just how genuine and caring of a person he is and how much he wants his clients to enjoy and reap the full benefits of flotation therapy. After Russ walked me back to the room he explained everything in a very down to earth, yet professional way- always leaving space for me to answer questions when I had them. He took the time to make sure that I was comfortable with the process and that I understood the reason behind flotation therapy. Sensory deprivation isn’t something only those who have had brain injuries benefit from, it something that many people can benefit from. Russ even made a few suggestions of what to do to get my wiggles out once I was inside of the pod that included stretching, a few yoga poses and then finally finding stillness within my body- this certainly came in handy! 
Once Russ left the room I took a shower- you must shower before entering the pod with shampoo and body wash, which wasn’t difficult because the shower was such a pretty space and all of the toiletries are provided right there for you! Once you shower you are ready to enter the pod.
Upon entering the pod ( which is only 10 inches deep, and filled with 1,000 pounds of Epsom salt) your limbs automatically lift up and stay there on their own. Two words- zero gravity!! I have never felt anything like it. It was completely effortless and completely uplifting! Once you lay back in the pod you have control of the lights and music, as well as shutting the pod completely or leaving it open or any level in between that you are comfortable with ( the top of the pod is on hydraulics). I first started off with both music and lights. After some exploring in different positions and a couple of up dogs ( thanks to Russ’s suggestion) I felt a little calmer and at ease with being in the pod. At that point I turned the music off and shut the lid of the pod- not entirely- but almost completely. The lights in the room are off so there is no outside lights shining into the pod. There’s also a small piece of a pool noodle in each room and for me, with my neck issues, it worked wonders. It is a strange feeling, one that Russ assures me you become more comfortable with the most float sessions you do, to let you neck sink back and support itself. So for me, the pool noodle was very helpful. I even tried it in a couple different positions, the base of my neck, and then rolling it a little higher up to the base of my skull ( this is where I felt most comfortable with the noodle). With the music off I was able to sit in complete silence, and just appreciate and admire the quiet. The calm. The stillness. The nothingness. No to do lists popped in my head, no things I had left undone at home or at work, no thoughts of what I was going to do for dinner, or how much homework my kiddos would be coming home with, not even if I would be able to find my own way home! Seriously- nothing came to mind. I wasn’t even able to string together a single thought. Every time I did my mind would just drop it mid thought. And for me, as a person who generally has a hard time shutting brain off it came very easily.  
Then, I took my float to another level by turning off the lights. So here I was in this pitch black pod in this pitch black room with no light and no noise. Who was I? I was a girl who was living in the moment and taking full advantage of the experience at my fingertips. So there I laid- or floated rather- in complete silence and darkness. My arms and legs extended completely in the pod. For me, this was the most beneficial part of the process. This is where I took the most from my float experience, and I believe this is the fullness that is best experienced from float therapy. My mind took me to some pretty trippy places during this time and this is where my body found complete and true stillness. There was no movement. Not in my fingers, my toes, my arms, or my legs. Complete stillness. Complete weightlessness. Complete calm. I could hear and feel my heartbeat. I’ve felt my heartbeat before, but to be so still that you can hear it at the same time? That’s a whole other level of connection to your mind and body! 
Flotation Philly was an experience unlike any other. I will admit I had my apprehensions and anxieties before heading into my appointment, but Russ made it super easy to leave all of those at the door. For someone who has suffered a brain injury and fights most days keep my sanity in a super busy world this was an extremely beneficial experience, and one that I know I will be back for.  
Interested in trying flotation therapy out for yourself? Use my coupon code LIVELOVEFLOAT for 15% off your next visit by using coupon code Also please note that floats come in 60 and 90 minute sessions, as well as various packages for any number of floats. I experienced the 90 minute session which I felt really allowed time for my body to adjust to the space and be open to all that the float experience had to offer. It really only felt like I was in there for 30 minutes! Happy floating! 

40 Days: Week 4

This weeks theme centered around restoration. Our meditation increased to 20 minutes in the evening and morning, and it also included a 3 day fruit cleanse.  

Our laws were:
Law 7: Relax with what is

Law 8: Remove the rocks

My rock was people pleasing. For me, I wanted to see what possibilities were available when I dropped my need for people pleasing, for acceptance, for my need to be included and liked by all. And what I found was that when I let go of the need to people please and to have everyone like me and to be agreeable I opened the possibility for a life of authenticity. The real, true me. The happy, the light, the joyful me. The unedited me. I experienced genuine carefree happiness and laughter this week. 

The 3 day juice cleanse was interesting. Truthfully I did not enjoy it whatsoever while I was going through it, however I did take a lot from it. For me by the second day my stomach was so sour from all the sweet fruit I wanted to stop- I did have some regular dinner that night- but made sure to hop right back on the wagon the next morning. And completely unexpectedly by the end of the third and final day I felt a huge shift. The fruit cleanse didn’t just make me want to get rid of the toxins inside of my body but it propelled me to take a larger look at my life to see what other toxins I could cleanse from my life. It came to me clear as day. Combining my need to cleanse as much toxicity from my life as possible, along with removing the rock of people pleasing I decided to make the bold move to delete the Facebook app from my phone. Deleting this app not only removed all of the stress and bad feelings I experienced from reading other people’s status’s and getting distracted by their drama, but even more than that it removed my rock of people pleasing. In the couple of days that have passed since I got rid of the app I realized that I was also using FB to engage in people pleasing without even realizing it! I was looking for praise, I was looking for approval, sometimes I was posting something just to post something- just to fill in the gaps. I was measuring my worth by the number of likes, or comments I received. So I deleted it and will only be accessing it from my computer. It may last a week, it may last a month, or it may last a year- who knows. This has also freed me up immensely. The first thing I used to do when I woke up was check FB. On the weekends I would waste 30 minutes, easily, scrolling through my newsfeed, for what? A picture perfect look into someone else’s life? Comparison? Emptiness? Likes? Since deleting the app I have already felt like a weight has been lifted. Rather than constantly being attached to my phone, and carefully monitor and count my notifications I could care less. And that has allowed me to be authentically present in my life. That has allowed me to create space in my life. That has allowed me to welcome the presence of possibility and for me in this season that is what this life is all about! 

   
   

40 Days: Week 2 Vitality

So as life would have it I am behind on my promised posts!  As I sit here and type this I’ve just finished feeding my troops dinner, I’ve got two kids working on homework (fractions, and counting money-ayyyyy!), one kids sick on the couch, and in a few minutes I will tackle Valentines Day Cards for close to 70 kids :/ And this is an “uneventful” night in our house!!

Here’s a recap on my Vitality week.  For me, vitality means editing out all of the busy.  Removing all of the non essential, in order to make room for the essential.  For what my body and mind and spirit are craving.  Some days that is rest. Some days that is curling up with a good book and a cup of tea in bed. Some days that looks like treating myself to a juice from my favorite juice bar.

Here are my vitality week questions:

  1. What is your most meaningful creation? My most meaningful creation in this life is my family and the stability, love, and support that I am able to give my children.

2.What is your most courageous act?  My most courage act, in this season of life, is making my health my number one priority.  Because this is something that I have neglected for as long as I can remember it feels strange to make something about me and for me my number one priority. It is uncomfortable, but necessary.  I am willing to do whatever, try whatever, and eat whatever I need to to in order to restore a level of homeostasis in my body.

 

3.  When do I feel the most energized?  I feel the most energized when I get a good night’s sleep.  A restful, complete nights sleep. I feel energized when I allow my body to rest, reset, and recharge without judging myself.

 

4.  Forces in my life that drain my energy:

-Too much time on Facebook/IG

-Not taking a break

-People pleasing

-Valuing others opinions over mine

-Taking things too personally

-Getting inside my own head

-Not asking for help

-Saying yes to too many things

-Over scheduling myself and my kids

 

Our Laws this week were:

Law 3: Step our of your Comfort Zone

Law 4: Commit to Growth

We were asked to write down 1 goal (attainable in 7 days) that we wanted to accomplish. For me, my goal was to take an advanced class at our studio called Deepen Your Roots.  This class was no joke! It was the real thing!  For starters instead of there being a FULL class of 40+ people there were maybe 10 people in the entire class.  Goodbye “blending in!” It was also taught by the owner of our studio who has an amazing ability to craft an incredible class. Was it hard? VERY! Did I feel awkward? YUP! and it wasn’t pretty…I fell over, I fell down, and I fell into just about every pose-BUT I got back up. I laughed it off, and there were others in the room, including the instructor, who were supporting me. Who were rooting for me. Who were sending me good vibes in my moments of struggle and it was SO WORTH IT!! If I hadn’t been challenged I may never have even tried to take that class!  What a week!

  

40 Days: Week 1

40 days week 1
We just finished week 1 of 40 Days to a Personal Revolution and keeping with my promise of sharing this experience with you here are my thoughts from this past week..

Law 2 says: Be willing to come apart- the big part of this law for me is letting go. Letting go of the control. Letting go of constantly being on point. Letting go of having it all together. Letting go of constantly filling up others wells while mine runs completely dry. This week we were traveling as a family, and I experienced this in its fullness. I laid down in bed, around 12:30 pm, and I took a nap! Usually when I attempt to do something like this thoughts of everything else flood my mind. Ways I could be spending my time being more productive usually involving laundry, cleaning, or attending to my kids. But that day this law and a gentle reminder popped in my head telling me to give up control, and to give into what my body needed and I napped for 1 whole hour! Hallelujah!

We also have excavation questions to answer each week. Here are my questions and answers from week 1…

1. How much am I taking responsibility to learn and grow from the experiences, both easy and difficult, that I have in my life? I am taking more responsibility than ever before to learn from experiences. Now rather than looking at an experience and saying “why me?” I am looking at it and saying “what is this experience teaching me? What have I learned from going through this?” I am realizing this is my life and time spent asking “why me”, time spent people pleasing, and validating others opinions of me is exhausted and time wasted. When I do those thing I’m not being responsible of my time or my views. 

2. What are my beliefs about:

My body– while I believe my body is strong and sturdy I am also very frustrated with my body for not allowing me to always do what I want to do. My body gives me a lot of limitations. Limitations that cannot be helped, avoided, or cured. 

My relationships– I am realizing the relationships I have need to have purpose. They need to serve me and they need to serve others. And I would love it if they served us both really, really well. I’m also realizing that it is okay to have surface relationships, because not every relationship is meant to go below the surface. This just makes my solid, below the surface relationships mean that much more to me.

My work– I am starting to develop and maintain more self-worth which is turning into more worth for my profession and my position in that profession. I’m realizing that while everyone may no agree with my opinion, I am allowed to have an opinion and I am becoming more comfortable with sharing those opinions with others.  

My spirituality– I believe we serve an almighty God. One who is forgiving, gracious, patient, and who knows our every desire. I know who I serve and what I stand for. 

Money– I believe that, for me, money is extremely stressful. It can turn my mood upside in a second. I find the more I “crunch the numbers” and the more I focus my attention and energy on money the more I stress. It’s no secret that money makes the world go round. We literally need it for survival. Food, clothing, and shelter wouldn’t be possible without money. This is a constant battle I have, internally with myself. Sometimes it is a daily internal struggle that I am trying to look at from a different angle.

3. When do I feel most present? I feel most present on my yoga mat. When I come into my yoga studio, lay down my yoga mat, and set an intention for my practice. 

4. Where in my life am I hiding? I feel like I am hiding in my relationship with my husband. I don’t always maintain open communication, but rather I maintain the expectation that he knows what I am feeling, thinking, or wanting. This is not the case. He isn’t able to read minds. I am working on being more mindful of this.

5. Where in my life am I flirting with disaster? I am flirting with disaster when I:
-over schedule myself and my family ( currently reading a book about being less busy!)
-having the mindset of having to do it all, by myself.
-thinking that I can push my body to extremes, rather than finding middle ground.
-when I don’t fill up my well in order to fill up others wells.
-when I don’t eat healthy, light, nourishing foods and my body becomes heavy, sluggish and foggy. 
 
Now we are onto week 2: Vitality

Law 3: Step out of your comfort zone

Law 4: Commit to growth



Stay tuned for this weeks experiences, and questions!

  

40 Days to a Personal Revolution 

Last night my yoga studio started our 40 Days to a Personal Revolution program. This is my second time participating in the program and I am so darn excited! No only do we have an amazingly talented leader, but I am so ready to dive in, dig deep, and see all the changes I make in my life for the better. The first time I worked through the program, for me, there was a lot of fear, apprehension, anxiety, and holding back. This time the vibe already feels completely different. There’s a calm, almost a stillness I felt in last nights meeting. I feel like I am entering this program from a place of being grounded. 

During our last program in the fall of 2015 I uncovered so many truths within myself. I was able, for the first time ever, to articulate and verbalize thoughts I hadn’t been able to for years. It felt like all of those webs that were tangled in my brain became untangled. I had some pretty huge shifts during the last program and so I thought it would be neat to document and blog my way through the program this time.

 
Last night, as a group, we set ground promises- not rules. Why? Because rules are made to be broken, promises are forever. And for me, this program is forever. This program will forever change me. When I am finished with this program at the end of February I won’t be the same person I was when I started. 

During the program we make a commitment to practice 6 days a week, be mindful of our eating habits, AM & PM daily meditations, and attend weekly meetings.

  
We were also asked last night to set some personal promises for ourselves. Attainable goals that would set us up for success. For me that looks like:  

– Being authentic and true to myself as well as those around me

– Getting uncomfortable 

– Sharing without fear

-Trusting the process-wholeheartedly

– Digging deep

– Building community 

– Less shame

– No internet/social media after 9pm

Each week we will work through 2 of Baron Baptiste’s Laws and 1 chapter of his book. This week our laws are:

1. Seek the Truth

2. Be Willing to Come Apart

And our chapter is: Presence

I cannot wait to start this journey, and see what lies on the other side of it!