There are times when you need to say something smooth and witty. You need to make a smart comeback to a powerful insult or subtle flirtation. The game is on but you’re too busy catching your breath. The better players leave you in the dust.
You need the answer to a problem. Time is not on your side. Your life and lives of those you care about are in danger. You need to act fast, but you’re frozen with fear.
The trick is to keep breathing.
You need a clear mind and a steady hand. When the pressure is on and the stakes are high, you don’t want stop the flow and hold your breath. When everything is on the line, the trick is to keep breathing.
The brain and body need oxygen to perform effectively. Stress leads to heavy, shallow breathing. Your mind and body follow the breathing. Bad breathing makes it difficult for you to control your mind and body. Especially when you need to.
This is why meditation is so powerful. Meditation forces you consolidate your mind and follow your breathing. As you become aware of the breath/body/mind connection, you become better at manipulating it when you’re stressed. The mind may be drained and the body on edge, but breathing consciously gets your faculties under control.
Wim Hof’s Breathing Course is well worth the price.
The Wim Hof course is not a course in meditation but it is a course in breathing. Improved breathing improves your ability to meditate. As meditation is the weight room for the mind, your ability to do anything else will greatly improve. People underestimate the power of meditation and breathing can be.
Because of boxing, I’ve always been in great shape. However, my cardiovascular strength is worthless if I don’t breathe. Amateur fighters don’t have the experience to calm their breathing during exertion. They tire quickly, believing they aren’t in shape. In reality, it’s just breath control. The Wim Hof method would shave years off this curve and teach young fighters to manage their adrenaline.
My mathematical ability has improved because I learned how to keep calm and breathe. It doesn’t matter if I understand the problem. What matters is that I can reach into my mind, calmly under the clock, and find the solution. The exercises in the Wim Hof course not only mirror my own methods, but there are techniques which strengthened the power of my breath.
I know from experience that proper breathing is important for winning and self-improvement. Despite what I know about the power of breathing, the price of course made me skeptical. But then I remembered that self-improvement always generate an ROI. I learned even more to give me a greater physical and mental advantage in life.
The idea behind the course is that you are capable of far more than you know and breathing is the way to reach your potential. Aside from breathing, you also uses colder shower techniques, stretches, calisthenics, and most importantly, commitment to the process.
The Wim Hof Breathing Method Explained
I can’t tell you everything. What I can tell you about are the parts of the method that are public knowledge. Breathing is treated like weight lifting. You do 30-40 reps of deep breaths. On the final breath, you exhale completely and time yourself not breathing. I’ve been able to hold up to 3:21 so far, but when I started I was barely over a one minute.
Once you need to breath, you take a deep breath. Hold that for another 10 to 15 seconds. You do a few reps of these every night.
The greatest benefit I got from this is how much easier running became. I can run through pain, discomfort or boredom but 2 weeks into this exercise, I felt none of that. I’m not in the habit of timing my runs, but sometimes I experience wheezing during training (I’ve got hay fever and asthma, so this is a regular occurrence). The Wim Hof breathing method helps tremendously with this.
The Cold Showers
Though I’d heard there are great benefits to cold showers, I’ve always been skeptical of them. Since I already purchased the course, I figured I’d give them a try. Now I DEFINITELY endorse the practice. The single greatest benefit from cold showers is that I’m fully aware of how my body shivers and how to control this response.
This might sound insignificant, but shivering is an involuntary response. To have control over it is remarkable. I’m sure that it is directly related to the control I’ve developed over myself when I get nervous or when I’m sweating.
I am by no means some mystic yogi, but the shivering from cold showers used to be so intense I couldn’t speak. Now I can have full on conversations and control myself.
To have control over it is remarkable.
I don’t know if this ability will remain if I stop practicing permanently, but I don’t practice everyday and I “know” how to take control of my nervous system at this level. I’ve read that Wim Hof can control his immune system and some experiments show this to be true. If I can take control of the shivering aspect (an involuntary response) then it stands to reason that one can control other involuntary processes.
While I was originally made aware of the method by Mike Cernovich (author of the best seller Gorilla Mindset and recent feature on 60 minutes), I’ve made certain modifications to the method to fit my lifestyle, goals and abilities.
For example, I like to do the breathing exercise right before studying physics or playing chess. It is during these activies that I can most feel the effect of breathing on my mental process. My chess rating suffers dramatically when I don’t remember to breath. When I do breath, my rating soars.
As I finish up my 400 level physics classes, I will continue to use the Wim Hof Breathing method to keep a clear mind that is capable of visualizing all the wonders of the universe.
Sign up for the Wim Hof course here
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