Are You A Dopamine Junkie?
What’s the deal with dopamine?
Dopamine plays several important roles in the brain and body. Dopamine helps us feel good, it helps us strive, focus, and find things interesting. In popular culture and media, dopamine is usually seen as the main motor of joy. It does this by giving us the feeling of reward for behaviors we do.
Take instagram for example, or achievement, training, eating, having sex, falling in love. All those pleasures release dopamine in your brain, This feeling of dopamine gives us the motivation to do that behavior more. Eating more, achieving more (hey burn out) falling in love more (hey tinder!) Posting pictures on instagram and so on. Too much or too little of it can lead to a vast range of health issues. Some are serious, some less serious.
Are you a dopamine junkie?
Unless we’re suffering from an addiction such as alcohol, sex, love, or drugs, this reward/motivation system is a very positive thing. We’re more likely to go after what we want and feel rewarded when we achieve it. However, if you need your fix of dopamine every day to cope with life, then you need pay attention so you don’t become destructive in your search.
Here are some signs to look out for that might mean you’re starting to get addicted to the feeling of dopamine.
1. Every two minutes I refresh each of my social feeds and blogs for new validations.
2. I want whoever I meet to compliment me on my looks and achievements.
3. I easily move on to new people. New friends, I like the feeling of the honeymoon phase and often leave when it’s over.
4. I need instant gratification. I seek it all the time. I will be the first one to text that guy/girl I met at the bar/on tinder etc. I am a sleep poorly. I can’t sleep for more than a couple hours at a time. I check my phone being half asleep to see if i have any new notifications, new emails, new text messages. I have even read through my spams. New….I want something new, all the time.
6. Easily bored. 10 minutes into the conversation with a person I want to go home. Sleep, look at netflix, put up a new Instagram photo etc. Watching TV or a movie make me restless. I’d rather work.
8. I always deliver way more at work than I’ve been asked for.
If so, don’t worry, you are perfectly normal. It might create self awareness and humbleness to admit these things though.
Don’t worry – there are ways to get self-control back, our answer always narrows down to…
New research has found that benefits of mediation may be due to increased dopamine levels in the brain. One study including eight experienced meditation teachers found a 64% increase in dopamine production after meditating for one hour, compared to resting quietly. However, it’s unclear whether these dopamine-boosting effects only happen in experienced meditators, or if they occur in people who are new to meditation as well. Read more about the benefits about meditation here and how to start meditating here.
Sign up for a meditation course by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.orgWe can help you to find your happiness. Regardless of circumstances!
This is a guest post. Any opinions expressed are the writer’s own.