Cold showers, mindfulness and being present

A few months ago I heard of a guy called Wim Hof through one of the podcasts I regularly listen to. I was interested about this guy they call “The Iceman”, so I started to do some research. Days later I was practicing the Wim Hof method. The Wim Hof method is essentially some breathing exercises followed by a form of cold therapy, for me that’s a cold shower, and it also goes into being mentally focused. I won’t go into what the Wim Hof method is really about, as it’s a lot to take in, but if you’re in any way interested in trying new and different things, I highly recommend going down the rabbit hole that is Wim Hof.

Three months on and I now do the breathing exercises only once a week or so, but I do the cold therapy part of the method everyday. In fact I now only ever have cold showers. Having a cold shower may seem like an odd thing to do and initially it was uncomfortable, then I began to embrace it and now I love it. Especially after going for a run or doing a workout, having a cold shower is the best!

There’s actually quite a few reasons why I enjoy having a cold shower, but there’s one really important one. Having a cold shower forces you to be present. Being present is being fully focused on your experience of the now. When I have a cold shower I’m not thinking about what I have to do next or what I have to do at work that day, I’m right there in that moment. It also forces you to focus on your breathing. It’s a lot like meditation in that way. And that’s how I think of it now, another form of meditation.

Learning to be present has many benefits in itself, but it takes practice and time. On top of the cold shower, I find a daily meditation incredibly beneficial. Meditation and learning to be more present has made a huge impact on my life over the last 12 months. I’ve touched on this in previous blogs before, but I was unhappy with some areas of my life. Meditation and learning to be more present has changed my perspective of my life and what it means to be happy.

“The secret of health for both mind and body is not to mourn for the past, nor to worry about the future, but to live the present moment wisely and earnestly.”  Buddha