Think Happy & Be Happy : Brain Happiness

Updated: Aug 25, 2021



Happiness is one of the many emotions experienced by your body and mind. It's a cumulative feeling of excitement, pride, loyalty, gratitude, and self-worth. To put it in simple words, we measure happiness as joy or pleasure from what we do and how we perceive our experiences.


While happiness is simple to describe, there's a lot of science behind happiness. In this blog post, I will share some of the brain chemicals that contribute to happiness. By the end of this post, you will learn how you can practice being happy even when you don't feel happy.


How Happy Chemicals Affect Our Brain?

Four chemicals are responsible for triggering happy hormones. They are D.O.S.E - Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins.


Dopamine

This hormone gives you that little hi-five whenever you complete a task or tick off a checklist. This chemical aids in forming habits. Although dopamine is good, it needs to be balanced otherwise it can create addictions.

Influence on Brain: Motivation


Oxytocin

This hormone improves social relationships. When you hug, hold hands, or kiss a good feeling rushes through your body. This feeling makes you feel warm and helps you develop trust with others.

Influence on Brain: Gives a secure feeling.


Serotonin

Fondly, referred to as the leadership hormone. It triggers pride, loyalty, confidence, and self-initiation qualities. Serotonin supplies you with a dose of self-motivation and makes you feel good about yourself.

Influence on Brain: Accomplishment and growth


Endorphins

Ever wondered what is pushing you to increase your sense of morale during your hardships? Yes, endorphin plays a role. The chemical pushes you out of your comfort zone and forces you to become a better version of yourself. Endorphin is released when the body perceives stress, but the chemical actually gives you a "high" in reaction to the stress.

Influence on the Brain: Stress relief and pain relief


How to rewire your brain for happiness.

Rewiring means aligning. It is putting things back on track but in a better way this time.


Identify what you are lacking

Self-awareness can help us feel or see what we're missing. When you are gloomy, you are lacking one or more of these chemicals. To figure out which hormone is required, question your emotions. Ask yourself, why do you feel sad, or what makes you unhappy?


What do you feel? Distracted, no focus? You may need Dopamine. Things to try:

  • Less time with technology and mobile screens.

  • Do outdoor yoga in the early mornings.

  • Try being an active team player.

  • Focus on achieving only one goal at work.

What do you feel? Loneliness, need for external validation? You may need Oxytocin. Things to try:

  • Spend time with family, friends, or a loved one.

  • Go on dates if you are a couple.

  • Cook with your significant other.

  • Hang out with family and friends.

What do you feel? Inferior, insecure thoughts, self-boasting? You may need Serotonin. Things to try:

  • Practice mindful meditation.

  • Write a gratitude journal

What do you feel? Lazy, lethargic, and laid-back attitude? You may need Endorphins. Things to try:

  • Intense cardio will help a lot.

  • Experience something adventurous.

  • Change your daily routines weekly once.

Practice Happiness

The brain is a huge database, and your brain keeps altering its pattern based on your life experiences. So to wire a brain towards happiness, you must train it.


For two or three days this week, sit quietly for 5 - 10 minutes and allow your body to feel. What do you feel? Review the list I shared earlier and choose one activity to boost your happy brain chemicals. Do this weekly and see what difference it makes. Practice happiness!

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