I’m an experimenter. I like to try things. And I don’t always know exactly why I’m trying something out. I might have a vague idea from reading that such-and-such is supposed to be good for mental health, improve your physical health, make you happier, bring more fun into your life, make you warmer, improve your digestion, and on and on. I prefer to read just a little bit and try something out for myself. I’m not much of a researcher when it comes to activities; I prefer to jump-in! In other realms however I’ll research the bejeezus out of something. (For instance, can anyone recommend a water purifier that’s proven to filter out nitrates and doesn’t use reverse osmosis?)
Basically I’m willing to do most anything that could make my life better! And then I can tell you about it and make your life better too!
If I find something that’s supposed to improve my life in some way and is something I can do on my own I’ll try it out to see what the experience is like for me. (Hello coffee enemas.)
Other things I’ll try out because I think they MIGHT help and I’m not exactly sure how. (Have you seen my video about no-mirrors?) In the end it comes down to your personal experience. You can read and read and read about a product or experience that says it’ll help improve your life but that’s a general claim. You won’t know how it’ll specifically improve your life until you try it and see what it does for you individually.
So what’s this natural and great way to inject some energy and confidence into your day? There’s something you can do if you often feel lethargic and listless or if your internal critical voices are keeping you down.
Freakin’ cold showers!
I know you’re probably thinking, “that’s not for me.” Hang in there with me! Just last week my brother asked that next time I go out west to visit my family he and I do a sauna and an ice bath combo together. My first thought was, “NO WAY! No, no, no!” I’m generally cold. I’ll wear a sweater when everyone else is in t-shirts. I’m usually feeling just right when others are sweating. The idea of purposefully getting in an ice bath sounds horrible to me.
BUT…I like to experiment. (Isn’t a little experiment worth more confidence and energy?)
I recently read an article touting the physical benefits of cold conditioning and it recommended starting with cold showers. I’ve half-heartedly tried using cool water before at the end of my normal shower, which is pretty warm. In the summer I would turn the water cool and let it hit me for about 10-30 seconds just to gently stimulate my skin and wake up my brain a little bit. But this was a different idea of specifically taking a COLD shower for about five minutes.
I thought, you know, all right. I’m an experimenter. I’m willing to try things as long as I don’t think they’re going to kill me or seriously hurt me in any way. I was a little skeptical about a cold shower. (I’m skeptical about most everything, but not distrustful. I’m still willing to try.) But I was fairly confident that standing in cold water for five minutes wasn’t going to kill me so why not give it a try.
The 3 unexpected benefits that’ll make you love cold showers:
- Bright eyed and awake!
These are three you can experience right away.
I’ve created a guide to help you along on taking cold showers in two ways:
- THE PRUDENT WAY (a good choice particularly if you’re highly sensitive)
- THE RIDICULOUS WAY (much funnier but hard to do if you live in an apartment)
You can download the guide for free by filling out the form below:
[email-download download_id=”511” contact_form_id=”510”]
Now I’m not much of a morning person…usually. I’m fairly quiet and don’t like to talk much…usually. I don’t drink coffee because when I tried, I didn’t get more energy, I just got nervous. I’m bit a hazy in the morning and often experience a vague, subtle, unknown dread at the thought of the coming day. There’s typically a lot happening inside me that I can’t even quite connect with…
Until I started taking a cold showers.
It usually takes a little while for my energy to build up in the morning. This was a minor sticking point in my relationship because when my partner’s parents would visit, in the morning I would either say nothing to them or mumble a very quiet “good morning” or “hello” and that was it. They didn’t much care for that and would have preferred actual conversation. But even that “good morning” took a good amount of effort on my part. I’m sure they would love me after my cold shower. There’s a brightness in me. I am awake. Things come into focus. Zip zam zoom. I have energy. And it’s practically without trying. I love myself in the morning now.
Wouldn’t you like to love yourself in the morning?
An additional benefit of taking cold showers: life is better when you let go.
I wrote this section right after finishing my third cold shower. I started with the Ridiculous Way.
My first cold shower was terrible. I really wanted to yell but hadn’t told my partner I was trying this experiment. I didn’t want him rushing up the stairs rightly worried because he heard me incoherently screaming in the bathroom. Whoo boy, not making noise was hard. After that experience I explained to him what I was doing and told him to simply leave me alone unless he specifically heard me calling for help. Ha!
Just for fun, I recorded myself during my third shower. Here’s a short clip. It’s not to scare you off! I hope it makes you laugh. This is an example of why I call this method the Ridiculous Way.
(A few notes on this clip. It was the middle of winter when I recorded this so it was not toasty in bathroom and that water was cold! I couldn’t even start with it on the coldest setting. BUT after continuing with the Prudent Way I can now stand in coldest setting without yelling at all, even in winter.) FYI This clip is safe for work though you’ll probably have some explaining to do.
Something important occurred in this section, which is why I’m sharing it.
During my third cold shower my partner walked by the bathroom and started mimicking my yelling, purposefully highlighting the ridiculous noises I was making. When he made fun of me I started yelling at him. That unlocked something in me. You can hear my yelling change after that.
I had let go.
Something unlocked that let me more freely express what I was feeling with less of a filter. And about 20 seconds after I let go the water became considerably more bearable.
When you let go and really unlock, your tolerance goes up.
Now isn’t that a life lesson you would like to learn? Let go of the mental and physical crap that’s holding you back and things become better. Painful situations become much more bearable, much less painful. Pleasurable and joyful experiences get even better when you unlock and let go.
There are ways to learn how to unlock. That’s what I do for a living. I help people unlock physically and mentally. The work I do is ultimately about finding ways to help yourself. Because you are with you all the time. Knowing what you’re doing and how to help yourself is a powerful ability.
So maybe cold showers really are for you. Try a few and find out. Let me know what you experience. Take my rule of thumb: anything you try, do it three times before you make a decision about it. And if you need some extra help, well, that’s what I’m here for.
Disclaimer: This should not be treated as medical advice. Please listen to your own body and do so with care. You are ultimately responsible for your body and your actions.