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The Road to Wim Hof - Part 1

Meet my new friend…his name is Cold!

April 2022 and we were flicking through the channels. In this age of Netflix and Prime this is not something we do often. I saw Lee Mack on screen and told my husband to stop and see what the programme was. We saw it was a celebrity program and we nearly moved on but something held our hands.

This was an absurd idea, these people were going to do a series of challenges in cold and ice and finish off with a bungee jump from a high bridge. At least 3 of these people had said that they were afraid of heights and would not do it. Anyone who has known me for a while knows that I like being warm, in fact I used to do anything to avoid being cold. I shivered watching them and thought “Rather them than me!”. I was hooked to see what this was all about and by the end of the series I had changed in a small but definitive way and I’m sure those celebrities, nearly all of who did actually did the bungee jump, changed too.

Those of you who saw Freeze the Fear will know that this was a series of challenges set by the eccentric, world loving, nature connecting Wim Hof (look him up on your favourite search engine) where he talked about how making friends with the cold and focusing on your breath helps your body to adapt to lifes stressors, be more able to face your fears and to connect with the heart of who you are. It was the breathwork that caught me, the emotional release of these people caught on camera, their ability to connect their mind and their body together to help heal their spirit. It was this that inspired me, a way to connect with myself again and to help my clients connect and become more whole. Hang on though, the method relies on 3 pillars: the breath, mindset and embracing the cold. I’m all over the first 2 (sort of) but the 3rd? Hmmm…. Well if I don’ try I don’t know right?

So, I joined Chichester Mental Health swims (@mentalhealthswims_chichester) to sea swim once a month, I build up cold showers from 10 seconds at the end of a warm shower to only having cold showers, washing my hair and everything in it! Now I have an ice bath in my back garden, I get into the sea at least once a month, more if there is time and have done all over winter and in March 2023, I went to Morillo de Tou in Spain to complete my final assessment to become a Wim Hof instructor.

Again, my mind, my spirit, shifted almost imperceptibly but so fundamentally that I came back and knew that I would be different from that point on, even on the days where I slip back into old habits. I met people who challenged my British reserve and gave me permission to let go. I found a group who told me that I was amazing just because I was me. Not because of what I do, but who I am. I had time and space to search my mind and my body and listen to what it was telling me. I literally couldn’t remember the last time I had had this space. It is invaluable. So if you are someone who keeps busy, who fills quiet moments with scrolling through your phone or watching box sets then I challenge you to find yourself an hour each day and give your mind some space. I will just let you know that for me it was a difficult, anxious time at the start because keeping myself busy serves a purpose and without being busy I had to face the things I had been pushing away. Getting to the other side of that though left me with mental clarity, renewed motivation and more peace within.

These blogs will be a series relating to some of the things that I recognised during this time so keep reading. In the meantime, if you would like to have an experience of the Wim Hof method then join us for:

Wim Hof Breathing class for Women starting June 5th at 08:30 @ The Hamblin Centre in Bosham


WHM Workshop which will be from 10am to 3pm on May 13th at Avisford Park Hotel in Walberton

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