Because floatation is relatively unknown and somewhat "mysterious" it is good to have an idea of what the process for the first float will be like in order to set a nervous mind at ease. Although each float is unique, there are some commonalties that may help to know beforehand.
Simply arrive at Float Matrix at the time of the appointment or a few minutes before. You are not required to bring anything except possibly an open mind. Our entry is to the immediate left of the building front entrance. You will see a Float Matrix A-frame sign.
When you arrive, you will receive an intake form to fill out. When this is finished, the orientation will begin. The orientation will provide you the opportunity to ask any and all questions until you feel confident with floating.
The first float is almost always the "hardest" float. What sets floatation apart from any other technique is that it allows the mind to "let go", but this can take a while in the first float because there are so many unknowns. A typical first float will begin by entering the float pod and choosing to close the door or leave it propped open as shown in the orientation. Next one will lay back and turn off the light. At this point, most people become intrigued at how easy it is to float and how pleasant the feeling is and will usually bounce around in the float pod for a few minutes before settling in.
The next stage tends to be the most difficult part. One has bounced around for a while, has settled in, and realizes that there is nothing to do. This is where most get fidgety and restless. During the orientation we will go over how to best allow yourself to relax which is simply by focusing on your breath. So during this time of feeling restless, simply feeling the breath will help you to relax easier. This period can last from 10 to 20 minutes, but as the Epsom salt works it's magic in relaxing the muscles, the mind begins to relax too. As one becomes more and more comfortable with themselves, they will slowly give themselves permission to let go.
When one lets go, they don't necessarily notice that they have, in fact, this is what letting go is. It is usually in coming back, sometimes with a startle, that they realize that they let go. Also they are more comfortable with "being back" as much of the tension releases when they let go. The mind is in a more rhythmic state as measured by EEG readings.
Most people will experience a period of shifting in-between the state of letting go and coming back and it will be experienced as a sort of "fluttering" between waking and sleeping. This is the most common sign that the brainwave pattern has moved into "theta". During this theta-state, a person's thought process will be dreamy. Organizing thoughts in the normal way is diminished and a less rigid thought process takes over. It is also during this period that people will begin dreaming while awake. This is the famous "hallucinations" that people have while floating. They simply witness dreaming in their awakened state. This period will usually last most of the rest of the float.
When the 1-hour mark is nearing, a person will often sense that their time is coming to an end and "letting go" can prove to be difficult as they know the time is almost up. People can get fidgety again, but not always. It is during this period that simply breathing and reflecting on what they have experienced is good. When the hour is up, we will turn on the light and softly tap on the side in case you have fallen asleep. When you are ready, simply sit up keeping your head slightly back so that the salt doesn't enter your eyes, open the door, and exit.
When people first exit the pod, it is very common that they will feel different, but not know what the difference is. Their head will feel a bit light, and their body will feel a bit heavy. Simply make your way to the shower to rinse off. The shower afterwards is a great transition back into normal reality. This is where people come more fully back into their senses. Relaxation in a float pod is different than a massage and sometimes it takes a little time before someone settles in to how they feel. When you are finished showering, you will enter the reception and have access to water and tea. As relaxation flushes stress hormones, people's digestion becomes active again and hunger tends to be prevalent after a float.
It is often the next three hours after a float that people begin to get a sense for just how relaxed they are. They will begin to notice themselves acting differently in the normal situations of their lives, almost as if noticing themselves from outside of themselves. This is truly a wonderful experience to have. To simply be you without all the conditioning your life has taught you.