[This post is part of a series on the Self-Imposed Daily Challenging Healthy Activity (SIDCHA). If you don’t see a Table of Contents to the left, click here to view the series, where you’ll get more value than reading just this post.]
[It’s also part of a series on Cold Showers. If you don’t see a Table of Contents to the left, click here to view that series, where you’ll get more value than reading just this post.]
About twenty-five days into taking thirty days of cold showers I watched the following video by the guy whose blog motivated me to try it in the first place, Joel Runyon. I found this video the most meaningful description of the reasons to try it. Well, the second most, after just trying a cold shower yourself.
I find the video explains the benefits of any Self-Imposed Daily Challenging Healthy Activity (SIDCHA). What I like most about this video
It describes how trivially accessible life-changing activities are. The challenge isn’t finding ways to improve your life. The challenge is doing them. Doing them need take no extra time, money, or any other external resource (cold showers save money and pollute less. They’ll probably save you time if normally take longer than five-minute showers). The challenge is purely internal, as is the reward.
The challenging part of a SIDCHA forces you to face yourself. Anyone who does a SIDCHA will tell you the growth it promotes beyond the task they do in the moment. If you’ve done a SIDCHA you know what I’m talking about. If you’ve never done one, that’s the fear or discomfort holding you back (like in this post on just sitting still, but which applies to challenging yourself, “More excitement than most people can handle“).
Is describes how choosing to do something challenging provokes the same feelings that discourage all of us from doing many things we want to do. He spoke about starting a company, but he could have spoken about plenty of things
- Asking for a promotion
- Public speaking
- Asking someone out
- Helping someone you don’t know
- Trying new food
- Playing sports
- Telling someone you care about how you feel about them
- Trying new things
It describes how to train yourself to overcome those feelings. It’s a skill you can learn. It promotes leadership by getting you to lead yourself. The resistances you feel to doing what you want are the same resistances you’ll face from people you want to lead. Learn how to understand and overcome yours and you’ll learn how to understand and overcome your followers’, and they’ll thank you for it.
It distinguishes between discomfort, pain, and fear, all of which are fleeting, and damage, which cold showers and the list of above activities have no risk of.
I wish I had made a video like it!
… although I confess I feel extra pride from choosing to do the cold showers on less inspirational material than this video, since it means I took more responsibility. Still, the main value of cold showers comes from doing them.
Read my weekly newsletter
Subscribe for a weekly update of musings on leadership, the environment, and burpees.