Next »

Hacking Into Your Happy Chemicals: Dopamine, Serotonin, Endorphins, & Oxytocin

blog post

You do not have a money tree, however you can have a happiness tree. Dopamine, Serotonin, Oxytocin, and Endorphins are the quartet responsible for your happiness. Many situations can trigger these neurotransmitters, but rather than being in the passenger seat, there are ways you can intentionally cause them to flow.

Being in an optimistic state has significant influence on your motivation, productivity, and wellbeing. Below are a few simple ways to hack into your positive neurochemicals:

How to be happy
Dopamine motivates that you take action toward your goals, desires, and needs, and provides you a surge of reinforcing pleasure when achieving them. Procrastination, self-doubt, and not enough enthusiasm are related to low levels of dopamine. Studies on rats showed individuals with low levels of dopamine always chosen an easier option, and much less reward/food; those with higher levels of dopamine exerted the effort necessary to receive double the amount of food.

Break big goals on to little pieces-rather than only allowing your head to celebrate when you’ve hit the conclusion line, you can create a series of little finish-lines which releases dopamine. And it’s essential to actually celebrate-buy a bottle of wine, or visit your favorite restaurant when you meet a small goal.

learning and growth mindset

And steer clear of the dopamine hangover; when you tank out after a massive high. Create new goals before achieving your present one. That ensures a consistent pattern for experiencing dopamine. Just as one employer and leader, recognize the accomplishments of your respective team. Sending a good email, or giving an added bonus, will allow them to possess a dopamine hit and increase future motivation and productivity.

Serotonin flows when you feel significant or important. Loneliness and depression are present when serotonin is absent. It’s why people fall into gangs and criminal activity-the culture and ‘community’ facilitate serotonin release. Unhealthy attention-seeking behaviors may also be a cry for which serotonin provides. Princeton neuroscientist Barry Jacobs explains that a lot of antidepressants focus on the output of serotonin.

Reflecting on the past achievements allows the human brain to re-live the experience. Your mind has trouble telling the gap between what’s real and imagined, so it produces serotonin in the two caser. Gratitude practices are popular because of this; they’re reminders that you’re valued and significant, and have much to value in everyday life. If you need a serotonin boost after a stressful day, require a few moments to reflect in your past achievements and victories.

An alternate way to boost your serotonin levels is to have lunch or coffee outside and expose yourself to the sun for twenty minutes; the skin absorbs UV rays which promotes Vitamin-D and serotonin production. Although a lot of ultraviolet light isn’t good, some daily exposure is good for boosting your serotonin levels.

The making of oxytocin creates intimacy, trust, and strengthens relationships. It’s released by women and men during orgasm, and by mothers during childbirth and breastfeeding. Animals will reject their offspring in the event the release of oxytocin is blocked. Oxytocin increases fidelity; men in monogamous relationships who were given a boost of oxytocin interacted with single women in a greater physical distance than guys that weren’t given any oxytocin. Oxytocin is the glue that binds together healthy relationships.

Also known as “the cuddle hormone,” an easy way to keep oxytocin flowing is to give someone a hug. Dr. Paul Zak explains that inter-personal touch not merely raises oxytocin, but reduces cardiovascular stress and increases the immune system. Rather than just a hand-shake, go in for the hug. Dr. Zak recommends eight hugs each day.

Giving someone a present, will also cause their oxytocin levels rise. You are able to strengthen work and relationships through a simple birthday or anniversary gift.

Endorphins are released in response to pain and stress, so helping to alleviate anxiety and depression. The surging “second wind” and euphoric “runners high” when running are caused by endorphins. Similar to morphine, it represents an analgesic and sedative, diminishing you see it of pain.

Together with exercise, laughter is amongst the easiest ways to induce endorphin release. Even anticipation and expectation of laugher e.g. attending a comedy show, increases amounts of endorphins. Taking your sense of humor to work, forwarding that funny email, and finding a number of things to laugh at during the day is a great way to keep your endorphins flowing.

Aromatherapies: the aroma of vanilla and lavender continues to be linked with the production of endorphins. Research indicates that dark chocolate and spicy foods can cause your brain to release endorphins. Keep some scented oils and chocolates at your desk for any quick endorphin boost.


Posted Nov 26, 2015 at 7:51am