Articles, Blog

Cold Shower Therapy: Joel Runyon at TEDxLUC

November 9, 2019

Translator: Kateryna Linchevska
Reviewer: Queenie Lee Thank you. Today I’m going to share with you guys
about cold showers. How they can change the way
you look at fear, change the way you approach
being uncomfortable, and even change your life. I first was introduced
to the idea of cold showers about two years ago. I was supposed to meet a friend of mine
named Nick Reese in Portland, who was a friend of a friend,
a really successful entrepreneur online and doing really interesting things. I met Nick in a bar
and immediately introduced myself. I told him what I was up to. I had just quit my job,
and I was taking a better job, a bigger job with a better pay, more money, more opportunities, better people to learn from, and eventually one day, when I got done with that job, I would eventually quit it,
start my own business. After listening to me blather on
for about five minutes, Nick took a step back,
and he looked at me and said, “So Joel, why haven’t you started
your own business already?” I was a little bit flustered. I looked at him and I said,
“You know what, I don’t have the money. I don’t have the time. I don’t really have the knowledge. I don’t know the right people. I’m just not ready.” He listened to my excuses for a little bit
and then asked the same question, “So Joel, why haven’t you started
your own business already?” At this point, I was a little annoyed because it didn’t seem like he’d listened
to me for the last two minutes giving him my really good reasons,
really valid reasons and stories on why I hadn’t started
my own business yet. So I repeated them to him, hoping that they would get through
to his head this time. And then I wrapped it all up with “besides, I just really don’t know
what to do anyways.” And Nick looked at me, and he said, “That’s not the problem. You already know what you need to do.
You just need to go ahead and do it. What you’re scared of
is you’re scared of being uncomfortable. And if you want to get used
to being uncomfortable, all you have to do is to take 30 days
of cold showers, and you’ll be fine. (Laughter) And he left it at that. We went on to other topics
of conversation. And then I went home that night,
and thought about what he said. And the next morning as I got up,
I decided I was going to do it. I was going to take
30 days of cold showers. So I got in the shower, and almost instinctually
I turned the water to hot. But then I remembered
our conversation the previous night and I decided to turn it to cold. And as I started to turn it
the opposite way, all these thoughts and all these feelings started rushing up inside me about why taking cold showers was a terrible, terrible idea. (Laughter) This is not going to be fun.
This is going to be really, really cold. Who cares what Nick says?
This is stupid. Why are you doing this anyways? And I almost didn’t do it. But I had already committed
to taking 30 days. So one way or another
I turned it to cold, jumped in the water,
and I screamed like a little girl. (Laughter) It was cold. It wasn’t fun.
And I didn’t like it one little bit. After five minutes
of being in the cold shower, I jumped out, toweled off, and 30 seconds
to a minute later I was fine. The next day I went to do the same thing. And as I jumped in the shower
and turned the knob to cold, all the thoughts and all those feelings
started rushing up inside me again: “This is a bad idea. This is really dumb.
This is going to be really cold. Do you remember how bad it was yesterday?” (Laughter) But I did it anyways, turned to cold,
jumped in and screamed like a little girl. After five minutes
I jumped out, toweled off, and 30 seconds to a minute later
I was totally fine. As I kept doing this for 30 days
over and over and over and over again, I started to realize
something really interesting: that all the excuses
I was telling myself in the shower before I turned the knob to cold were the exact same excuses that I
was telling Nick in the bar in Portland about why I couldn’t quit my job. And they were the exact same excuses
I was telling myself in my life about all the different reasons
why I couldn’t do the things that I really wanted to do. As I started to think about that,
I started to realize that all the stories, and all the reasons,
and all the excuses, because that’s what they really were, that I used in the shower to convince
myself not to take a cold shower, those weren’t the thing that kept me back
from taking a cold shower. The thing that kept me
from taking a cold shower was my decision to not be okay
with being uncomfortable. And when I accepted the idea
that I was going to be uncomfortable, and I was okay with it, and then made the decision
to be uncomfortable, that’s what made me take the cold shower, and that’s what made me start doing
different things with my life. And now, the reason this works
is that every single day every single one of you, I hope,
will take a shower. (Laughter) Now, if you’re like most people,
you jump in and almost instinctually, almost automatically
turn the water to hot. It’s normal. It’s easy.
And it’s what most people do. It’s almost the default choice, but it is a choice. And it’s not the only option. So you don’t have to do that. You can do the opposite;
you can turn the knob the other way. You can take a cold shower. It’s not very much fun. It’s pretty uncomfortable,
and almost nobody does it. But you can do it if you choose to. And what you start to realize
is that, like me, all those excuses
you tell yourself in the shower, they can either do one or two things: They can convince you that you’re right, and that all those stories, and all those reasons,
and all of those excuses, they’re legitimate. And they’re going to keep you
from taking a cold shower, and you’re not going to even try. Or, you can decide that they don’t matter. That you decide that one way or another,
regardless of those stories, you’re going to take a cold shower. I’ve been taking cold showers
for about two years ever since Nick told me about this. And it’s one of those things
that I keep coming back to in my life as sort of a litmus test
for the type of person that I want to be. Every single time I find myself
needing a little extra strength or a little extra courage to go to do something
that is hard or difficult, or just a little bit uncomfortable, I take cold showers. So when I was training
for my first Half-Ironman, I took cold showers. When I quit my job, finally,
I took cold showers. When I started my own business,
I took cold showers. When I got in the best shape of my life,
I took cold showers. When I ran my first ultra-marathon,
I took cold showers. When I got up this morning
to do a TEDx talk, (Laughter) I took a cold shower. (Laughter) And what I realized is this: I was looking at myself in the mirror,
and I told myself something. I said, “If you’re not willing
or able to be the type of person that is willing to be uncomfortable
for five minutes alone in the shower, where the only negative outcome
is you being cold for five minutes, and the only person
affected by that decision is you, then how will you ever
have the strength or the courage to choose to be uncomfortable
in a situation where the outcomes are much, much greater, and the people affected by your decision
far outnumber just yourself.” And so I’ve got one challenge
for you guys today. And it’s really, really simple. Tomorrow, when you get in the shower, instead of making the easy choice, instead of making the comfortable choice, instead of doing what most people will do, do the opposite, turn the water to cold, take a cold shower for five minutes, choose to be uncomfortable, and see what happens. Thanks. (Applause) (Cheers)

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  • Reply Ryan Ambler April 3, 2019 at 7:27 am

    I like your paths story. Nice one.

  • Reply sunrise - April 3, 2019 at 2:58 pm


  • Reply Jo Sedai April 8, 2019 at 1:03 am

    I'm 7 days into my 30 day challenge and it's been life changing. I'm more aware when I take the shower in the morning and on the days I decide to take a cold shower at night, I sleep like a baby. It's a habit I can see myself locking in for the long term.

  • Reply Ayesha S April 8, 2019 at 12:14 pm

    I love his pauses. Great message too

  • Reply Larry Sarallo April 8, 2019 at 7:37 pm

    I want to do it but I live in Phoenix Arizona. The water doesn't get cold here.

  • Reply Javier Torres April 9, 2019 at 5:12 pm

    I know that you won´t believe me, but i haven´t shower in 2 years and I feel great!

  • Reply ibmor audio April 10, 2019 at 4:40 am

    Overly dramatic

  • Reply battu tulu April 12, 2019 at 4:36 pm

    Just let things go…

  • Reply Christian Prepper April 14, 2019 at 2:19 pm

    6:07 Since there are some people who do not bathe daily, can those periodic cold showers still help them?

  • Reply Bryan Barrera April 17, 2019 at 12:06 am

    I take cold showers for 1 year and I still don’t know how to start a business

  • Reply taral - April 21, 2019 at 9:33 am

    Has anyone taken a shower at 100 degree celsius? It changes your skin and life altogether.

  • Reply Render*Unto*Caesar April 23, 2019 at 8:18 am

    30 day challenge accepted.

  • Reply The Calm Man April 27, 2019 at 4:18 pm

    Nick sounded like a con-man.

  • Reply jennycita April 29, 2019 at 2:10 pm

    If it screams like a little girl, it must be a little girl.

  • Reply Yaser Olabi May 4, 2019 at 6:34 am

    Experience. . We as a Muslim do it at age of 14… individuals. ..Quran ice directions

  • Reply Francesca Taylor May 5, 2019 at 6:22 pm

    Wow I think this is one of the most boring talks i've ever heard on Ted ;I take cold showers they're great for your system

  • Reply mafnpafn mafnpafnster May 5, 2019 at 7:21 pm

    I don't have a shower, I like in an office

  • Reply バニラエキス May 9, 2019 at 7:24 am

    cold showers take me back. i used to use them as a punishment for myself when i was in the worst of my anorexia.

  • Reply Vras Traceur May 10, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    Wim Hof.

  • Reply Straighten Out May 11, 2019 at 1:23 am

    Great talk

  • Reply Everybody’s Tough Online May 17, 2019 at 3:07 am

    he says cold shower 77 times

  • Reply joeriggi87 May 20, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    Listed none of the health benefits of cold showers. Lame talk, clickbait title.

  • Reply AussieHeroes May 21, 2019 at 1:17 pm

    Beast video, take cold showers 😉

  • Reply allen m May 22, 2019 at 3:15 pm

    Just took my first cold shower this morning!

  • Reply Rosalba hamer May 29, 2019 at 11:41 am

    Ur giving me goosebumps.

  • Reply poppanolan May 30, 2019 at 3:09 pm

    This man is so boring. Listen to the original Wim Hof.

  • Reply Jamison Anderson May 31, 2019 at 3:51 am

    8 days of cold showers!! Never going back

  • Reply Mike G June 2, 2019 at 5:36 am

    "<i>Screamed like a little girl</i>" ?? Huh? Boys don't scream? Anyway, the cold feeling only lasts the first 30 seconds or so — not 5 minutes. No screaming.

  • Reply gumbess 검베스 June 3, 2019 at 8:24 am

    Can I wash my hair normally in warm water 1st? Then start cold body shower?

  • Reply Jennifer Primo June 4, 2019 at 4:08 am

    Not a great speaker🤷‍♀️

  • Reply Dan Koon June 8, 2019 at 9:09 pm

    The "either/or" scenario hides a third way: a gradual approach. I was intrigued by the Wim Hof Method but a cold shower was too uncomfortable, so what I did was take a cool or lukewarm shower for a day or two and then a cooler shower for a day or two and then cooler and cooler, you get the idea. Within two weeks I was taking full on cold showers and have been doing so for a couple of years now including swimming in lakes here in Sweden all winter, even when I could barely break through the ice. The idea behind this gradual approach is that your veins and arteries have muscles in them and as you expose yourself to cooler and cooler water, these become acclimated (or stronger) to cold exposure. So, my advice would be not to chicken out but just go comfortably cool for as long as you can tolerate it and each day go a little bit cooler, as you can tolerate. In two weeks or so, you'll be on your way.

  • Reply WCephei77HD June 9, 2019 at 2:23 am

    How about when sick? Can you take cold showers when on a cold? Will it help you boost your immune system to get rid of the cold faster?

  • Reply BlakeFashy June 12, 2019 at 5:56 pm

    Cold showers + nofap = super human

  • Reply yosser hughes June 13, 2019 at 12:00 pm

    try cold bath with ice. .. NOw we are talking. pussies!

  • Reply Nick Senzee June 17, 2019 at 4:05 pm


  • Reply MsTuliplady June 28, 2019 at 7:24 pm

    Completely agree. Started lifting weights, and heard that cold showers helps with soreness. But it also completely brightens my day, and from someone who suffers from depression, its so meaningful

  • Reply Jessie Sanchez July 4, 2019 at 11:44 am

    Cold shower

  • Reply Ya Si July 10, 2019 at 5:45 am

    I took a cold shower about 3 and a half hour ago after watching and listening to this video I'm about to take another cold shower again,thanks

  • Reply pohlitz July 11, 2019 at 11:23 am

    I screamed like a girl? Its 2019, y'all. (but I dig the cold showers)

  • Reply Graham Lyons July 11, 2019 at 4:28 pm

    I read somewhere – can't remember where, and it may not be true – that regular cold showers boost your immune system.

  • Reply Quebec Sucks July 17, 2019 at 1:16 pm

    wim hof, breathe…happy mind, happy life

  • Reply Straight from the Source July 20, 2019 at 12:40 pm

    Hi all, new upcoming channel , i made a video on cold shower benefits from an enlightened indian master for some cold shower motivation , peace 🙂

  • Reply Hannah Taylor July 22, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    I want to try this but scared to just jump I freezing cold water. Does it work if you gradually decrease the shower temp day by day?

  • Reply icefrog Ice July 22, 2019 at 8:04 pm

    When taking cold shower you start at normal temperature and gradually lower the temp until you can't hold any more but it must be gradually so the body's temperature adapts

  • Reply bluesky July 24, 2019 at 2:22 am

    Took him 10 minutes to say what could be said in 2. Advice? Take more cold showers.

  • Reply William O'Connell July 25, 2019 at 11:58 pm

    I love cold showers I love how it wakes me up in the morning, and how It relaxed me at night before bed after taekowndo.

  • Reply Roman Roman July 26, 2019 at 4:50 pm

    Someone just robbed Wim Hoff

  • Reply Pablo Bartelotte July 30, 2019 at 10:22 am

    i know a kid that lost his left testi from jumping into a cold shower, he was 16 and the sudden cold caused his groin muscles to strangulate it. he said it was more painful than when he got kicked a year before. best to go in warm then drop the temp gradually. same benifits with the hazards.

  • Reply Tracy Heaslip August 8, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    did you know cold water UPS and creates dopamine in the brain

  • Reply mint August 12, 2019 at 5:02 pm

    cold showers increase cortisol

  • Reply moestavernprankcall August 17, 2019 at 4:24 am

    Wtf is an independently organized ted talk? So it’s just some bum talking to a room of losers

  • Reply Jowita August 21, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    I'm in Phoenix and our cold water is always warm in the summer

  • Reply BLIND PATRIOTIC August 23, 2019 at 10:56 pm

    😂 🤣 😆

  • Reply Damita Allen August 24, 2019 at 1:37 pm

    2019 and still watching 😊

  • Reply Bob August 29, 2019 at 3:24 am

    If you take a cold shower long enough, you will get used it and be fine.

  • Reply YeezyVII August 31, 2019 at 12:51 am

    it's funny how people are only discovering this now! this has been known forever! catch up white people! 😂

  • Reply 5thElement1x A September 4, 2019 at 9:18 pm

    Reality check starts at 8:52

  • Reply M.I.A. Tyson September 7, 2019 at 5:44 am

    What. In. The. World. In Panama cold shower is the only option, what's the big deal? Then again, Panama is tropical so after the first second in a cold shower you feel hot again 😔 I dont recall it being life changing.

  • Reply James Johnson September 9, 2019 at 10:43 am

    What is a shower?

  • Reply Heiða Mjöll Stefánsdóttir September 10, 2019 at 1:06 am

    Why scream like a little girl but not a boy. this is humiliating for young girls.

  • Reply Ron M September 15, 2019 at 2:21 am

    How cold was the cold water? Full cold?

  • Reply sst tss September 15, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    You don't need a shower every day you morons

  • Reply robert lalonde September 17, 2019 at 9:53 pm

    cold baths is even better

  • Reply Simon M September 20, 2019 at 2:33 pm

    This video made me start cold showers in 2015, i'm 19 and still do them!

  • Reply B. Couture Vibes Nyc September 20, 2019 at 6:35 pm


  • Reply Abdiwahid September 21, 2019 at 4:24 am

    ahh nobodys reacting to "a little girl"cuz this is 2013

  • Reply J B September 21, 2019 at 4:58 am

    I take cold showers after the suana

  • Reply Antwon Fishwick September 21, 2019 at 6:05 am

    Cold showers make me feel very primal. I fling my doo doo across the bathroom to the toilet, no need for paper.

  • Reply joy deep September 21, 2019 at 2:00 pm

    Well delivered!! Precise , to the point.

  • Reply Jérémie Litzler September 23, 2019 at 5:27 am

    Since November 2017, I take cold shower all year long. I turn the knob to cold by default every day 😉

  • Reply AAFamily Member September 25, 2019 at 2:41 am

    Does it work if I love cold water?

    Day 3 and I'm loving it, specially after a couple minutes when you get used to it

  • Reply Gustavo Andrade September 25, 2019 at 11:27 am

    next time tray dentist without anesthesia 👌

  • Reply Peter Hansen September 25, 2019 at 6:35 pm

    cold showers helped me through depression

  • Reply Fifth Angel October 1, 2019 at 1:09 am

    Happiness must happen, and the same hold for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. Viktor Frankl

  • Reply nick atanassov October 4, 2019 at 7:53 am

    Wim Hof comes in mind

  • Reply David A October 5, 2019 at 5:28 pm

    Now if you are like most people, you dont see this is a painfully slow presentation

  • Reply Magical Dawn October 6, 2019 at 9:32 pm

    Wim Hof Method

  • Reply Herman Helmich October 7, 2019 at 12:57 pm

    Ice ice baby

  • Reply ResurrectionX October 10, 2019 at 8:20 am

    "Cold is my warm friend"

  • Reply Spark October 11, 2019 at 6:48 am

    I have my shower bob inverted so when I think I put it warm it’s cold

  • Reply Sean Bangerter October 11, 2019 at 6:44 pm

    I take only one hot shower per week, Thursday nights before bed as Fridays are my rest day from working out. Two minute showers all other times. Changed my life.

  • Reply mkeysee mkeydoo October 12, 2019 at 4:20 am

    Daily 5 minutes in freezer thats the way 🙂

  • Reply SeeItHappen October 12, 2019 at 10:53 am

    Copied from Wim Hof without giving any credit

  • Reply gamegirl October 13, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    Cold showers in the cold winter 🥶🥴🤯🌈😁

  • Reply Alban1 you’re to blame October 14, 2019 at 1:47 am

    3:41 i think taking a cold shower you light up , you wanna dress the nicest you’ve got and got out , in a hot shower i think it’s different, i personally take hot showers when it’s cold and i want to stay home , maybe going out in that cold would have been a better choice

  • Reply Alban1 you’re to blame October 14, 2019 at 1:50 am

    4;15 you can cheat a little , don’t jump in , put water on one leg first , than the other , and than arms , than it’s easier

  • Reply JD233 Joel October 14, 2019 at 7:23 am

    Try it with cold urticaria. Not a fun experience.

  • Reply tyler c October 19, 2019 at 12:32 pm

    I’m kinda pissed that he didn’t mention any of the physical and other psychological benefits. Increased testosterone, better skin, more energy and lower rates of depression.

  • Reply Jason Wettstein October 20, 2019 at 10:44 pm

    I need a cold shower just to wake up from this boring a-hole

  • Reply Joshua Hidalgo October 21, 2019 at 7:57 am

    This gave no information on the benefits of cold showers other than learning to be uncomfortable

  • Reply I I October 23, 2019 at 11:53 am

    But how will this work in the summer ? The water is warm then

  • Reply TATER THOT October 26, 2019 at 5:54 pm

    legend has it that all those people went home that night and took a cold shower..

    And now they are leading our world..

  • Reply A B October 29, 2019 at 2:01 pm

    Its easy 2 say cold shower is easy

  • Reply Brock Strongo October 31, 2019 at 7:19 pm

    After a cold shower, my mirrors are fogged over as if I had just taken a hot shower.

  • Reply ERICK CH November 1, 2019 at 10:28 pm

    Cold water will so save you money

  • Reply gekaprog November 2, 2019 at 4:28 am

    Cold shower are beneficial because they train the body to regulate core temperature. You are supposed to switch between
    cold and warm water until you become pro.

  • Reply Tam G Smith November 4, 2019 at 10:21 pm

    How long do you have to stay in there? Do you need to do Wim Hof breathing?

  • Reply boboutouiezra17 November 5, 2019 at 1:45 pm

    I CAN4T TOOK cold shower for 5 munit i do cold shower quickly because im scare

  • Reply Lin W November 6, 2019 at 1:38 pm

    You haven't heard of W. Hof??

  • Reply Fergal Orion November 9, 2019 at 10:50 pm

    This should have take 2 minutes max.

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