Last summer, I started taking two ten minute cold showers a day. It’s an easy way to increase lean muscle, stimulate your immune system, and keep your mind happy. Seneca bathed in cold water everyday of his life, even as an old man.
During the winter in upstate New York, I stopped because I would have gotten pneumonia. Now that I live in San Diego, I take cold showers every morning. The 52 (brutal, I know) degree San Diego mornings make it easy to convince myself to just turn the knob to warm water. But I don’t. I always turn it on cold. When I’m done, it’s an accomplishment. I can tell myself that I did something uncomfortable and hard, and I haven’t started my real work yet.
If you want to try taking cold showers, it’s best to start just 30 seconds or one minute and increase the time you stay in by 30 seconds each day. I made passing time easier by memorizing my favorite monologue of all time or by meditating. If you don’t have something to keep your mind occupied it’s harder.