Today we’d like to introduce you to Cary Ballou.
Hi Cary, so excited to have you on the platform. So before we get into questions about your work-life, maybe you can bring our readers up to speed on your story and how you got to where you are today?
I worked for decades in high-stress corporate environments, and I’d never taken the time to learn the practice of meditation other than practicing yoga.
I had a lot of insecurities and felt that my identity and sense of self-importance came from who I was professionally and how much career success I achieved, which most of the time left me feeling anxious, depressed, and unfulfilled. I also often wondered what my true calling or purpose was in this life. I felt deep down that I needed to be of service in some way to my community, but I had no idea how or what shape that would take.
I was definitely living in a state of chronic stress, which had become my normal until the loss of my mother in 2016 and some other traumatic personal issues led me to take a weekend trip alone to L.A. where I reconnected with a childhood friend who had recently moved there. We started talking about her journey back to good health after a series of medical issues and personal losses.
At one point she asked me if I’d ever had a Sound Bath; she told me they had been a crucial part of her recovery. I was intrigued enough to follow through with her suggestion, so when I got home I started looking around for where to find one. Then, I got distracted and fell back into the work/ life grind until a few weeks later when I saw Gong Meditation on my yoga studio’s calendar. I thought that must be what my friend had told me about, so I signed up and went one Sunday afternoon.
After that one hour, something very profound happened. I’d achieved a state of calm and peace that I hadn’t felt in years and it lasted for the rest of the day. My mind had stopped racing, and during the Sound Bath I’d felt like I was floating at times, seeing flashing lights and colors while my eyes were closed, and the pain in my left shoulder that was always there was so much better.
While I was sitting there afterward, I had this thought come in so clearly – I didn’t know where this was going to take me, but this was going to be my new thing. I started going as often as I could. A sound bath meditation once or twice a week was providing me disconnection from the outside world, relaxation I’d forgotten was possible, pain relief, more clarity, and peace, and I wanted to learn everything I could about it.
What I learned through almost a year of studying was that this is the most ancient form of medicine that’s been used for thousands of years in cultures around the world, that the Laws of Physics govern everything in our energetic bodies, and that sound has the power to correct imbalances and restore resonance to the mind and body in a very powerful yet gentle way.
It clears past traumas, accelerates healing on every level, stimulates the production of grey matter in the brain, improves concentration, and alleviates chronic stress and chronic pain, just so many benefits beyond what I can explain here. Albert Einstein, Nikola Tesla, Edgar Cayce, George Lahkovsky, and so many more physicists, researchers, and inventors had all known this long ago, and yet it was still mostly unknown to us today.
I left my career, completed my training and certifications, started renting space to host weekly sound baths, worked at some local resorts in the Scottsdale area doing special events and collaborations, and continued getting the word out to all of my friends and anyone else I met. This is truly my passion and my mission, to help people on their healing journeys.
In February 2022, I opened my own studio for weekly offerings and other events that focus on holistic healing modalities.
Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way? Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
Oh no, it’s been challenging along the way for sure.
This is a form of energy medicine that’s still unknown to so many people. Most people I meet don’t know what Sound Healing is, nor do they take the time for their own meditation practice, so continuing the be consistent and put as much education out there as I can is so important. We all need time to go within and to commit time in our busy schedules for “unplugging” from everything that’s going on in the world around us, so I find that the biggest challenge is convincing people to actually do that for themselves.
I call Sound Baths “meditation without having to learn how”. Give yourself an hour, lie down, breathe deeply, and the instruments will take care of the rest. This is such a powerful form of healing and it’s so easy to do.
Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
Shanti Sound is A Sound Healing Meditation and Holistic Event Space. It’s located in downtown Scottsdale at the Northeast corner of Hayden Rd. and McDowell Rd., close to the Loop 101 East, 202 Red Mountain Freeway, and downtown Phoenix.
I offer weekly group sound healing sessions, one-to-one sessions, private group sessions, and special collaborative events such as Breathwork and Sound Healing, Yoga and Sound Healing, and more. There’s also a 3-day workshop at the studio that people can sign up for to learn more about Sound Healing the weekend of June 10-12, hosted by Sound Healing Academy International.
SHA is where I got my training and certification, and I’m so excited that my trainers now have a space in the Southwest where they can bring their level of expertise to our community. What I’m known for is the level of training I have and the environment I create for these experiences. I strive to create an atmosphere where people can take a one-hour break from life, lie down, relax and let me guide them into a meditative state and receive some deep, natural healing.
I’ve gotten so much incredible feedback about how my sessions are transformative and different from some other ones, which makes me so grateful. I’m proud of myself for having overcome a lot of fear and creating a space where the healing arts community can grow in this part of the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. I did a lot of research when I was looking for locations, and there was nothing like it in this part of town. It’s a very special place.
Shanti Sound is different from other locations that offer Sound Healing because it’s dedicated to Sound Healing first and foremost. Other locations where sound baths are offered often have many other classes on their schedules that differ from Sound Healing, and I wanted to create a space that’s exclusive to Sound Healing and other healing arts where people can explore and enjoy other forms of healing outside of the traditional doctor’s office.
Most importantly, this is a VERY INEXPENSIVE and 100% effective way to boost the immune system, alleviate chronic stress, lower blood pressure and detoxify the mind and body. Shanti Sound is also available to others in the healing arts that want to rent the studio to host their own events.
I have a 1,200 SF open studio area, as well as a separate treatment room for individual therapies, It’s a beautiful space for your event, workshop, or individual client needs. Yoga mats, blankets, and bolsters are available for use at the studio as well.
What do you like best about our city? What do you like least?
I love everything about our city. I’ve lived here for over 20 years and I’ll call it home forever.
The energy and sacredness of Arizona are different from anywhere else. I love the desert, the mountains, the endless sunshine, the plant and animal life, the art and diversity of culture, the food, fitness, everything.
The only downside is the heat in the summertime, which I dislike but it’s still better than the humidity I grew up in!
- $29.00 single drop-in sound bath session.
- $119.00 Five-session sound bath package.
- $199.00 Ten-session sound bath package.
- $349.00 Twenty-session sound bath package.
- $175.00 Private one-to-one session.
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: shantisoundaz.com
- Instagram: @shantisoundaz
- Facebook: Shanti Sound AZ
Cary Ballou and Mathew Osmun