Float therapy is usually thought of as an amazing form of self-care, which it is, but it might also be the best thing for strengthening relationships.
Here’s why: If you are past the “newlywed” phase, and especially if you have kids or an otherwise overly-scheduled life, you can probably relate. It’s date night. You make a dinner reservation, you get a sitter. You take longer than usual to dress and do your hair. You think ahead to the upcoming evening and imagine soft candlelight, witty banter, maybe some flirting with your significant other. A chance to rekindle some of that spark that brought you together in the first place.
But then you go to the leave the house and your three-year-old (or dog, or cell phone) just doesn’t want you to leave. You arrive a few minutes late to the restaurant to find that everyone else in the city decided to have date night today too and it’s going to be a 20-minute wait even though you made this reservation two weeks ago.
You are finally seated. The waiter brings your glass of Pinot Noir and you take your spouse’s hand across the table and stare deep into his or her eyes. And can’t think of anything to say beyond, “Did you remember to take out the recycling?”. Instead, the part of your brain which is responsible for conversation is preoccupied with supporting the weight of the incessant mental load we all carry. Reminders about ordering school lunches and getting skates sharpened are taking up the room in your brain which should be devoted to reconnecting with that person you love more than anyone on this planet – your before-anything-else.
This is exactly why I love to start a date night with a float. That hour of float therapy helps me to put down that mental load. Imagine a clear bottle filled with sand and water. If you shake it up, the sand and water mix and you get murky water. After an hour of floating, the sand and water separate. The water is clear. What matters has risen to the surface, and those urgent-but-not-important “to-do” items have settled to the bottom.
The very best conversations I have had with my spouse in the past two years have been after a float. I feel lighter, clearer in the head and more open. I am able to stay focused on the conversation without my mind drifting to my phone or to my eternal list of reminders.
Float Zero is the only float therapy centre in South Africa to offer couples floating.