Has anybody else tried it and got used to the cold?
I should add that I always got easily cold and there is almost no temperature where I say that it's too hot.
Did you ever ask a doctor about this? Especially an endocrinologist. One example of many possibilities: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypothyroidism
As for cold showers, I dreaded them but at some point in my life I just relaxed. I would call it "acceptance", in general, life throws bad stuff your way and all you can do is "exist", i.e. nothing, really. So if I want to or have to have a cold shower (e.g. when hot water was out once) I just turn on the cold water and get in and accept that it's uncomfortable, especially at the very beginning. Nothing I can do about it - and, more importantly, since I know it's only uncomfortable but not threatening, nothing I have to do. All I have to do is stand there and do nothing and feel whatever there is to feel. At that point I'm just an observer of my own body, with no active role to play. The conscious part does nothing, the forces at play are all controlled by lower level brain functions.
it's done a lot of great stuff to me. winter depressions are a thing of the past to me now, and I'm almost as outgoing in the cold seasons as in summer.
I have been practicing cold immersion for several years as part of sauna hot/cold cycles since I first discovered experimentally that it measurably improved my symptoms of acute and complex PTSD. Extremely heartened to see some initial scientific results in line with my anecdata.
“Our results provide compelling evidence for the primacy of the brain (CNS) rather than the body (peripheral mechanisms) in mediating the Iceman's responses to cold exposure. They also suggest the compelling possibility that the WHM might allow practitioners to develop higher level of control over key components of the autonomous system, with implications for lifestyle interventions that might ameliorate multiple clinical syndromes.”
(for those that didn’t get to the abstract it describes both being used together, as part of of a routine that seems to enable atypical nervous system control but I did not notice specific mention of ptsd)
Re meditation specifically, 1) breath awareness helps me with general relaxation + increased awareness of triggers, 2) metta meditation helps to shift towards compassionate mindset to self and others, and 3) advanced tibetan insight practices (emptiness of self) as taught by Dr. Daniel Brown of https://pointingoutway.org/ helps me shift from my normal sense of ego-centric self to an outside Observer perspective, which is impervious to triggers. I cannot recommend Daniel Brown's programs enough for any serious student of meditation. I took a Level 1 retreat at Esalen about 10 years ago and it proved to me that meditation isn't totally BS.
My strong recommendation based on what I learned there is to not engage in any deep form of meditative practice without first strengthening the physical body. This is what yoga was designed to do originally, to prepare the body and mind so that you could go to advanced meditative states with a strong enough structure to handle whatever psychic energy was released.
1. WHM allows to control pain center of brain at will shutting down the pain response.
2. WHM increases response in brain areas that keep sustained focus in face of adverse conditions.
3. WHM does not cause increased metabolism to keep body warm.
4. The mechanism of keeping body warm seems to be forceful respiration that increases response of fight-or-flee autonomous nervous system increasing glucose consumption in muscles around the lungs.
Instead, the warmth seems to come from the intercostal muscles.
At first I could not give up my shirt and blanket as it felt too cold. It's now even colder yet I feel warm laying here. Fever hasn't increased.
That said, it didn't seem that complex. My impression was just: find the coldest places you can go, do it repeatedly, breath while doing it and focus on your breath.
Eventually you will have both physical adaptation to the cold, but also new mental control.
There's a bit more to it in terms of specific techniques, but I believe that's the gist. If you watch some videos of his you can see a bit more elaboration, but you have to read in between the lines for a practical overview.
In fairness to him, to the extent he's discovered something, we don't have good ways of describing it.
Check out this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VaMjhwFE1Zw
you'll have to dig between all the forest navigation videos which might be a plus for some