Let Them Float!

R.E.S.T. and Sick Leave

R.E.S.T (Restricted Environmental Stimulation Technique) or floatation therapy (IntoMeSea names this floatation meditation) is the practice of floating in a chamber of Epsom Salt rich water without light or sound.  Flotation meditation has been scientifically investigated and is currently considered an established and proven modality beneficial for reducing stress, anxiety, depression, and increasing optimism and sleep quality.  It induces deep relaxation and can be used as a preventative health care intervention in the workforce.  It is a great tool to enhance creativity and productivity and cut down on work related psychological illnesses, stress, and absenteeism.

A 2014 controlled pilot trial examined floatation meditation as a preventative health-care intervention in healthy participants and yielded exemplary findings.  Sixty-five participants who were all part of a cooperative-health project organized by their employers, were randomized to either a control group or a flotation therapy group.  The floatation therapy group took part in a seven weeks flotation meditation program with a total of twelve flotation sessions.  They were surveyed regarding psychological and physiological variables such as stress and energy, depression and anxiety, optimism, pain, stress, sleep quality and mindfulness, plus altered states of consciousness.  

The floatation therapy group showed a decrease in stress, anxiety, depression and worst pain and an increase in sleep quality and optimism, plus a significant connection between the degree of altered states of consciousness while floating and daily mindfulness.  There were no significant findings for the control group to note.  

What does this have to do with work related illness and absenteeism?  Everything!

Stress, fatigue, anxiety, depression, insomnia, burnout syndrome and gastric complaints (yes….floatation meditation eases gastric problems too) are everyday causes for sick leave.  Occupationally induced fatigue is a key factor causing stress; if employees can take the needed time off to recover, they are less likely to be stressed and more likely to decrease the number of days they miss work.  An employee with a regular floatation meditation practice increases their company’s productivity and decreases the risk of psychiatric disorders.  

Floatation meditation boosts your mood, gives you more energy and enhances creativity.  A relaxed employee is a happy employee and a happy employee is beneficial in the workplace.