I recently came across this concept on Joel Runyon's Blog of Impossible Things and his Cold Shower Therapy Challenge - although the idea was not a new one to me.
7 years +/- ago, I went to a naturepath and he suggested a similar concept. Now, I respected this doctor... took his advice to the letter on other prescriptions... the cold water shower I promptly "forgot" about.
Fast forward to April 2012, Joel is suggesting a similar "prescription" although for a perhaps a different reason.
From Blog of Impossible Things:
The shower shows you how weak fear really is.
When you’re staring at that faucet from hell, you’re only thinking one thing – this is going suck, this is going to suck, this is going to suck. Why? Because it sucks obviously and you’re afraid it’s going to suck. But just because something sucks doesn’t mean you can’t overcome it. Just because something is hard doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Just because you’re afraid of something, doesn’t mean you have to stay afraid.
In April I thought - "Great idea... a motivational technique. But, I've got the concept so I really don't need to do the showers."
In May I thought - "Great idea... but, I'm already super busy and making headway on tons of projects so I don't need this shock factor."
Today I thought - "Great idea... it really can't be THAT hard. It's just cold water."
And then I tried it. I stared at that faucet... and I'm pretty sure it stared back at me - taunting and daring. Joel talks in detail about this time - that it's going to be hard to do. I didn't believe him.
The excuses started soon after I stepped into the shower.
~Why do I need to do this? I've "got" the concept of facing fear.
~Maybe I should do this in the evening... after all is it really "good" for me to shock my body with cold water first thing in the morning?
~I bet people don't really do this, they just say they do.
~People would think I was crazy if I told them I took a cold shower, on purpose.
~That doctor said I should take cold showers... but he was a quack...
That last one made me laugh and realize that EVERYTHING I was thinking was a total excuse. I just decided that a respected doctor was a "quack" just so that I could convince myself that I didn't need to turn that water to COLD and step into it.
And then, laughing, I turned the water to cold and stepped in.
You know what? It didn't suck nearly as bad as I thought it would. Sure there was definately some suck factor going on but it was outweighed by laughing at myself.
If I made excuse after excuse to not do this.. a simple exercise in mind over matter... how many other truly important things am I not accomplishing due to trying to avoid the suck factor?
Can I do this for 30 days as Joel suggests?
I believe I can... and, as I type this I believe I need to do it - you see I'm already formulating excuses as to why I don't need to do it again... after all I've "got it" and I've "learned a good lesson" ... but you see, obviously I haven't if the excuses to not do it are so readily coming to mind.
I'm interested to see where this journey will take me - I've got a few big goals that have bounced around in my head for a few years but I've never made progress on them because (insert numerous excuses here).
If you'd like to see where this journey goes... join me won't you? Well, not in the shower but here on the blog. I'll be blogging my experience with 30 days of cold water showers, my excuses and progress I make on one of those goals that I've yet to accomplish for fear of the initial suck factor. I'd love to hear your thoughts, encouragment and even for you to tell me it's crazy if you think it's so.
Up for a challenge? Trust me, if I can do it you can! Read more about these concepts and other uber inspiring things on Joel's Blog then turn that water to cold, embrace the suck and conquer the excuses between you and your goals!