“There is no duty we so much underrate as the duty of being happy” said Robert Louis Stevenson.
Its true. We scroll through our endless to-do lists with no thought of which (if any) of the items give us satisfaction, or make us smile. Of course life is not only about doing what makes us happy, but some part of it must be, surely.
Avidly reading ‘The Happiness Project’ (there will be an entry on it very soon) a lot of different things have been entering my mind.
One of the things the writer, Gretchen Rubin discovered through her happiness project is that if you are happy, it makes people around you happy too, and vice versa. Another thing she discovered is that money can buy happiness, if spent correctly.
Happiness comes differently to different people, and arises as a result of different things. That goes without saying. For me, happiness is often linked to having some quiet, alone time. Something I explored in The Importance of Being Quiet.
With the above facets in mind, I was undeniably very excited, and intrigued when my brother told me about something called ‘Floatopia.’
Essentially… Floatopia consists of lying naked in a vessel full of salt water, and floating.
Its based on the idea that it has a number of benefits such as:
– Relieving stress
– Releasing Endorphins – the body’s natural painkiller and happy pill.
– Improving the condition of the skin and hair.
– Detoxing the system.
– Increasing creativity and imagination.
– Increasing circulation and energy levels.
– Balancing the left and right brain.
– Improving concentration.
– Assisting in the treatment of addictions, phobias and depression.
– Regulating sleeping patterns – one float simulates 4 hours of sleep.
– Relief from old injuries (especially back aches etc.)
I arrived at the centre yesterday with no idea what to expect, but so excited, having had my brother raving to me about it for weeks.
Stripping down, inserting ear plugs (to prevent salt water from seeping into my ears) and settling myself into the vessel, my first thoughts were of apprehension. Unreasonable worries such as ‘What if I drown?’ and ‘What if I can’t get out?’
And as the minutes ticked by I was first greeted with an influx of the minor problems which bother me on a daily basis, along with my to-do list rattling and prattling its way around my mind.
And then nothing.
For an hour I floated in a vacuum, free from the outside world. And when I emerged… nothing mattered.
Its a difficult sensation to describe… that of being completely wiped clean. I didn’t fully believe my brother either when he gushed to me about. But thats exactly how it is.
One of my best friends called me with a problem minutes after I stepped out of the door, into the bustling street and back into ‘real life.’ I wish I could have told her how it so didn’t matter. Life is really good. It doesn’t matter, its all in your mind. Of course some problems are more serious than others but: “You can’t live a positive life with a negative mind.”
I spent hours walking around with a clean slate. One that I will certainly take much more care in re-writing on.