“What would the best version of you do?” Phil Drolet
The Smile Files
Here is your dose of FAST SMILES FILES a place to find a bullet list of things designed to bring a smile to your lovely face.
6 to 60 - Cold Shower Survival Plan:
Cold showers have been proven to have an amazing effect on your well being and health: reducing depression, waking you up, muscle recovery, weight loss, improving circulation, and much more.
Something as simple as rotating the temperature gage can really have a big improvement on your life. But…. Save Our Souls, they are so freaking cold!
For the past few years I’ve been on and off this slick band wagon, but recently I decided to weave it into my morning routine for good. I’ve noticed a huge shift in mood and energy since I’ve plunged in.
I don’t do anything that doesn’t bring me joy, so I had to find a way to make it fun.
☕️Every morning I make a hot cup of coffee, walk into the warm water shower to lather up.
⏲I find that putting a timer on anything turns it into a game and therefore makes it better.
After the cleaning portion is complete I turn the water onto “ice-cold”, begin to shamelessly chant “Cool Sculpting. Cool Sculpting...” as I spray 6 regions of my body separately.
10 seconds each = arm, arm, leg, leg, front trunk, back trunk.
60 seconds over and done.
Catch breath, sip coffee, and repeat as many times as desired.
All you have to do is take one cold shower tomorrow morning, and see how you feel. You can start hot, but end cold, for at least 1 minute (work up to three). Then see how you feel. If you like it, then do it again tomorrow and see how two days in a row makes you feel.
It’s just an experiment, not a permanent life change. But whatever you do, don’t be too serious about it and have fun. If it causes mental stress, it’s not worth it. This is supposed to improve your life, not bring you down.
I am going off line in T-60 min and spending my week leading into New Years on a silent meditation retreat. I will be = increasing my neural networks by unplugging from my social networks.
Can you concentrate long enough to read this? If not, you really should! Concentration meditation is a foundational meditation practice across many spiritual traditions. In concentration meditation (aka serenity or samatha meditation), we return our awareness to one object of meditation to the exclusion of everything else, thereby collecting and unifying the mind stream. Cultivating this practice allows us, with sustained effort, to go more deeply into insight practices and many other meditation and spiritual practices.
Modern neuroscience is also giving us fascinating new information about concentration practice. It changes our brain structure by increasing the density of gray matter in brain regions linked with learning, memory, emotional regulation and empathy. It also increases brain thickness in the prefrontal cortex and insula, and changes the biochemistry of the brain by increasing neuroplasticity, the flexibility of the brain. We’re seeing that it’s possible for a 50 year-old meditator to have the brain functioning of a 25-year-old.
This practice counteracts the overstimulation of today’s world, as reflected in current books like The Shallows, by Nicholas Carr, that highlight the neurological effects of social media, texting, and technology that bombard our awareness with messages, alerts, and feeds. Practicing concentration meditation collects the mind stream and “builds the muscle” of concentration, enabling us to turn away from the constant pull of our smartphones, computer screens, games, and entertainment, allowing us to settle into the serenity of our deeper nature.
Based on information from Cloud Mountain Retreat Center.