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Cold showers, and why my wife thinks I’m crazy

” Eeeeee! Oh my God, this is so cold!”

Photo credit: gagilas / Foter / CC BY-SA

Photo credit: gagilas / Foter / CC BY-SA

Every morning, as I turn the water freezing cold, I literally yip out loud and say that to myself in the shower. My wife thinks I’m crazy.

You know why I do it, don’t you?

Here is a hint:

not to disappoint, but it has nothing to do with sex, and it does have everything to do with why you haven’t made the changes you say you want in your life.

When that cold water hits my body, it triggers a cascade of events that support my immune system, stress response, and even my skin, but that’s not why I do it. I turn the shower handle from H to C, take a deep breath and back into the shock of it because it reminds me, teaches me, habituates me, to a fundamental skill vital for anyone interested in growth and expansion: it conditions me to tolerate, and even embrace, the uncomfortable.  

BUT YOU DON’T LIKE UNCOMFORTABLE EXPERIENCES…

Before you run screaming from this blog, please know, that you don’t have to freeze yourself to get the benefit of this practice.

(Yes, learning to Tolerate the Uncomfortable is a practice.)

You don’t like the uncomfortable experiences, though. Nobody does. It’s better to be happy, connected, and feel good, right? Why would you even want to consider bothering? I had a client who summed it up perfectly: when I suggested that he just sit with the uncomfortable experiences, his response: “Why on earth would I want to do that?”

HERE’S WHY:

Because doing so helps you to grow. Because deep inside yourself, you know that through learning about yourself you gain the freedom to live a more full and vital life. And you want that, I know you do. Even if it’s uncomfortable.

Growth occurs at the edges of our capacity, where what we know meets the unknown, and sometimes even the inconceivable.

If you want to become physically stronger, you lift more weight, or lift it for a longer period of time. Sure, it’s uncomfortable, but you do it because you want the growth. The body adapts, and before you know it, Arnold Schwarzenegger is jealous.

But what about the other kind of uncomfortable: the difficult emotional experiences?

Believe it or not, this is where so much of our aliveness and vitality is experienced, and where it is suppressed. That’s why it’s where most of us need help, including yours truly. If we shut off the emotions we don’t like, we automatically limit the ones we do.

Want to be able to love more? Gotta tolerate the opposite. Think of Mother Teresa: she had tremendous capacity to tolerate the uncomfortable, and by doing so, she contributed love enormously.

What are the positive emotions you want more of?

What would you be willing to tolerate in their service?

Photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar / Foter / CC BY-ND

Photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar / Foter / CC BY-ND

Take a moment:

Imagine what life would be like if you could tolerate uncomfortable experiences like:

Arguments
Confusion
Indecision
Apathy
Frustration/Anger

What if you could tolerate them long enough to let your reactions loosen their control on you, long enough remember that you care?

If you can learn to do this, you will increase your capacity and personal power in these situations, and your life will change. Indeed, before too long, you won’t even recognize yourself!

Brennan Healing Science™ sessions help you do just that: begin to increase your capacity to deal powerfully with difficult experiences.

How?
By charging and balancing your energy field, aligning your intention with your highest good, and by bringing to consciousness the patterns that hold you back. You are gently led to the edge of your capacity and met with acceptance and love. In that place, your natural tendency for growth and freedom can move you. You actually provide your own healing.

You will strengthen your emotional muscle in a safe, compassionate space designed for release and expansion. What’s more, is that you can examine your ineffective beliefs and find new ways of working with challenges.

As you expand your capacity, today’s challenge will soon be a piece of cake. You will learn to effectively partner with your energy system, and that is the road to freedom.

I love working with my Brennan Healing Science Practitioner™ because I want to grow, and honestly, she can see things about me that I can’t. The opportunity for growth is always available, and learning to tolerate the uncomfortable experiences in a safe space with the freedom to be yourself is invaluable. If that sounds great to you, click here to find out more. I’d love to help.

WHAT’S YOUR EXPERIENCE?

For most of us, making a change is challenging, and the last thing we want to do is turn the water from cozy to freezing. So, if this is difficult, don’t dive head first like a polar bear into a frozen fjord! Dip a toe in, a well insulated toe.

Here are some suggestions for learning to tolerate the uncomfortable:

Photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar / Foter / CC BY-ND

Photo credit: Tambako the Jaguar / Foter / CC BY-ND

Create a new practice of doing something that is good for you, but uncomfortable.

  • Try out a cold shower!
  • Speak up for yourself when you would rather not
  • Offer a kind word to a stranger in need
  • When you want to point the finger, stay silent for 10 conscious breaths
  • When anger starts to rise, try to just feel it without acting on it

Then notice what happens when you reserve your reaction.  My experience is that you will begin to have more facility in this difficult area.

Here’s my personal favorite:

  • Find support in yourself, in friends, or professionally.

Having a buddy that will listen to your challenges while still remembering how amazing you are, can be absolutely invaluable. I have several buddies in different aspects of my life who have helped me stay sane in pretty difficult experiences.

So, choose one of the above, and Go for it!  Before you know it, you won’t recognize yourself.

I’d love to know what challenges you are working with, and how you think this practice of Tolerating the Uncomfortable can help.  Let me know what you are up to in the Comments below, or send a private message here.

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I deeply honor your journey. It is precious, and it is yours!

Blessings to you as you Create the Capacity for Change!

Brennan Healing Science™ and Brennan Healing Science Practitioner™ are trademarks of Barbara Brennan, Inc.

Comments

  1. That’s what’s going on. I have cold baths primarily for immune system building reasons and they help me sleep. But I had never considered the emotional growth factor from tolerating and habituating myself to an uncomfortable situation. Thank you for that.

    • Yes, Janet. I find if I don’t purposefully engage with the uncomfortable, then when it happens of its own, it can be more of a shock.

  2. Will, I just love this post and can relate to so much of what you have written. While I can’t bring myself to have a cold shower (too much of a hot bod) I do step out to take the dogs out when the weather is cold and wet, does that count? Think I will have to try on some of your other suggestions and build up my emotional strength. With smiles, Sylvi

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