365 Days at 36.5 Degrees: Why Ice Baths and Not Breathing?

Why am I focusing my new personal challenge that I call 365 at 36.5 on ice baths and cold exposure instead of some other form of mental, emotional, or physical activity like breathing, mediation, or exercise? The short answer is focus and intention. You cannot hide from the cold.

The cold will help us sharpen our intention to utilize in other areas of our lives both personally and professionally. When we sharpen our intention, we become more aware of what we are doing throughout the day and make more intentional decisions. This is what leaders do, they are aware and make intentional decisions based on this awareness.

I do Wim Hof Method breathing and other breathing exercises daily. I also meditate and exercise daily. All these things are essential to mental and emotional health. However, have you ever found yourself just going through the motions when you are exercising? Have you ever found that your mind is wandering to the minutia of the day when you are breathing or meditating despite your desired intention? Of course the answer is yes because it happens to all of us.

Focus and intention will be a key theme throughout 365 at 36.5. What you will find during this challenge is that you cannot go through the motions of intention and focus while you are in the ice bath (or cold shower). You will either be focused on your intention, or you will be focused on the noise and chaos the cold creates in your mind, body, and spirit. Very simply, you cannot hide from the cold! Therefore, we will focus 365 at 36.5 on cold exposure. More to follow!

I’ll be posting about it regularly on my Instagram and I hope to update you weekly here on the blog. You can learn more about how I use cold exposure as a leadership tool in my book The Process, Art, and Science of Leadership. You can also read more about the benefits of cold exposure on leadership here.

Errol Doebler is the founder of Ice Cold Leader, a leadership consulting firm. After successful careers as a Navy SEAL Platoon Commander and FBI Special Agent, Errol founded Ice Cold Leader to realize his passion of teaching leadership and helping individuals and businesses improve exponentially. Errol provides executive coaching and leadership training to individuals and teams across the United States.

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