Earlier this year I started taking cold showers every day. Within a month I realized the benefits far outweigh the temporary discomfort of a few minutes of harmless cold.
The first few days will be the most difficult. You will anticipate what you perceive as painful ice bullets about to attack you. The initial shock makes you take a deep breath or breathe rapidly to conserve heat. It’s a natural reaction, but after that you can control yourself.
How to Start Taking Cold Showers
When I stepped into that cold water the first day I screamed at the ice cold hell pouring out of the shower head and quickly finished my shower in record time. That’s only because I had a different definition of what an enjoyable shower is.
Cold showers are actually an opportunity to evolve yourself into the most badass person you can possibly become.
The main reason people take hot showers is that they are addicted to their comfort zones. Their lives become a cycle focused on maximizing comfort and avoiding the smallest of discomforts. The habit of hot showers reflects this.
We probably all know the benefits of hot showers:
- Tension relief, soothes stiff muscles. It can feel like a relaxing massage.
- Hot showers can increase your oxytocin levels and ease anxiety. People who perceive their lives as stressful are probably even more likely to suffer from an addiction to perceived comforts such as hot showers.
- Hot water is probably a good option when you have a fever, or cold and obviously can be good for the body.
But also be aware of how cold Showers Make you a better human being.
As unbearable as you might think cold showers are they are extremely healthy, and good for your mind too:
Cold showers wake you up and get you ready to start the day. It creates a sensation similar to the fight or flight response that is only as stressful as you let it be. By practicing this level of awareness a little every day you will be more ready to react with alertness when you are confronted with an actual danger.
2. Great for Hair and Skin
A hot shower will dry these out but a cold shower is more hydrating. Cold showers have even been shown to help people recover from some unsightly skin conditions.
3. Improves immunity and circulation
Cold temperatures gets blood flowing around organs and heart thus helping them fight off diseases and leading to improved heart health. This paper shows that cold temperature stress is also correlated with higher white blood cells and other elements of the immune system as well. If you want to avoid getting sick cold showers will help your immune system. Don’t you want to prevent that future discomfort more than you care about your hot showers?
4. More energy
Cold temperatures trigger a neural response in the hypothalamus that is supposed to help you survive, also known was the fight or flight response. This secretes hormones that actually boost your energy to give you speed and strength to face any challenges. You can experience and manage this adrenaline rush every day.
There is evidence that cold showers reduce fatigue. I used to sleep a lot more than I do now and still feel tired during the day. I attribute my newfound energy to several things, but I’m sure cold showers have helped a lot.
5. Relief from Depression
According to this research, cold showers are a potential treatment to depression. “Exposure to cold is known to activate the sympathetic nervous system and increase the blood level of beta-endorphin and noradrenaline and to increase synaptic release of noradrenaline in the brain as well. Additionally, due to the high density of cold receptors in the skin, a cold shower is expected to send an overwhelming amount of electrical impulses from peripheral nerve endings to the brain, which could result in an anti-depressive effect.”
I think this really makes sense as depression is a cycle of perceiving the worst in life. When you can challenge yourself to do something even as simple as a cold shower, you not only get the physical benefits, but you also benefit mentally. You start to build a habit of successfully facing challenges.
If you do a little research you’ll find plenty more benefits of cold showers
But the most significant benefit is that they test what you are really made of. Whenever someone dismisses the idea of cold showers without even trying them I realize what kind of person they are. Quitters. Winners face their comfort zone. Even a little every day. If you are a winner you would be willing to give this a try for a few weeks and pay attention to how it changes your life.
Cold showers are one of the easiest ways to develop the habit of facing your fears and moving toward becoming your ideal self. You don’t lose anything by taking a cold shower. For a few minutes you are touched by cold refreshing water and then it’s over.
Cold showers are a small step in the direction of eliminating your dependence on your comfortable addictions. When I first started taking cold showers, the first few days were difficult I admit. I tried to rush through it and get it over with. But eventually you get used to it. And especially taking cold showers in the morning can change your life.
Excuses for not taking a cold shower are all lame nonsense.
Some people are so afraid of leaving their comfort zone that they dismiss cold showers as stupid before even trying.
If you put a limit on what you think you can accomplish, even something as simple as the temperature of water you use to shower, that limit will affect other limits you are willing to put on yourself.
Convincing yourself you CAN’T do something ignores your potential. We easily condition ourselves to enjoy hot showers and associate all sorts of relaxing, thoughts with them. But wouldn’t you rather associate the limitless ability to face your fears with your morning shower but by simply turning off the hot water of delusional comfort?
Being uncomfortable is how you grow as a human being. I feel sorry for people who have had everything going great for them since they can remember. Their feeling of comfort is completely dependent on external circumstances. But someone who can face discomfort, and remain positive in spite of it learns true strength.
Do you want to be tough and let minor annoyances, and even major problems bounce right off you, or do you want to be negatively impacted by anything that bursts the bubble of delusional comfort you use to protect yourself?
Your ego is a collection of habits that you are convinced represent who you are. Whenever you even consider changing one of these habits you might meet some resistance. Some part of you might think it’s stupid to run a marathon, take a cold shower, or do anything that doesn’t fit your definition of comfort that keeps your ego going.
Giving up without trying is dangerous. It leaves our egos stuck at a level of development that is only good for reproducing more people, without even coming close to realizing your true potential.
Before you convince yourself that you will just go on taking your hot showers after reading this, realize that everyone comes up with excuses to protect their fragile ego.
Do you care more about comfort or improving yourself? Caring about your own comfort all the time is selfish nonsense. People who take cold showers don’t need hot water to comfort them from the perceived pains of a lame life.
Being willing to experiment with things that allow you to take control of your life. Don’t let your ego, environment, habits, and excuses dictate what you are capable of accomplishing. Those things are not your friend. Ego, and bad habits and negative thoughts prevent you from becoming the super human you really are.
Commit to Improving Your Life
People addicted to hot showers are not necessarily losers and quitters of course, but if you want to improve your life and get over other bad habits then committing to cold showers every day is an excellent place to start.
What if you start the 30 day cold shower challenge and suddenly think to yourself, “well today is much colder than usual, I think I’ll skip this day.” ?
Why are looking for an excuse to skip a day? Why not see it as an opportunity to challenge yourself to be even twice as awesome for taking a cold shower on a cold day.
When are you going to challenge yourself?
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