Why do you get happy?
Ever wondered what goes on in your brain when you are happy? Let me walk you through this.
There is a little chemistry here! Four kinds of chemicals are released when a person is happy and we can call it as DOSE
1) D for Dopamine- Whenever there is expectation of reward, dopamine is released. And we get the energy to work towards that reward. Also known as the “goal-achieving” chemical; it is also released on the journey to becoming rich.
So that’s the reason why scientists say that its more fun to chase the Mercedes rather than owning it. Once Mercedes is bought, its just a car. No dopamine is released after buying it. Then we start eyeing Bentley this time and again the dopamine cycle begins. Designers of Facebook know this science. But do you know the Facebook notifactions you get are timed like a slot machine. Sometimes you get the reward and sometimes you don’t. they are simply playing wuth your biochemistry.
Alcohol, nicotine, cocaine and even cell phones send dopamine through our body that is why they are so satisfying and addictive. And if we depend only on this chemical for happiness, we won’t be happy in long term. We will just become materialistic addicts.
We want all four chemicals for happiness.
2) O for Oxytocin- Also known as the chemical of love, it gives you warm feeling when you spend time with someone you are enjoying with. If we go with closed ones on some resort or cruise, then the fun is double as both oxytocin and dopamine are being released. Human touch also triggers oxytocin. If that ‘Jadu ki Jhappi’ is for more than 10 seconds, it releases oxytocin.
Also, did you know when mammals give birth, the mother’s brain releases oxytocin so that she feels immense love for the newborn baby. And probably that is the reason when a little soul enters into life of an unhappy couple, their relationship improves a lot.
Trust also triggers oxytocin. We are bound to be unhappy if we lose trust on people.
Have few people who you can trust, and you can be yourself with them. If you have such people in your life, you will regularly get oxytocin.
3) S for Serotonin- it is the chemical of contribution. When we act in a way that benefit others, serotonin is released. That is the reason a billionaire might think I have all the luxuries, have lovely bunch of people around me but still I am not satisfied. So he decides to donate half of his wealth. And eventually he gets that serotonin rush.
Serotonin is also released when you believe in yourself as it is the leadership chemical. When we are respected, admired and given preferential treatment- we feel awesome.
Take that Mercedes which gave you dopamine rush when you bought it. the dopamine is over, but now when you drive it people look at you with some respect. Here you get the serotonin rush!
How interesting is this one- when people look at you with respect as a leader, you release serotonin and they release oxytocin as they trust you.
4) E for Endorphins- this pain-masking chemical, is released when you are on a journey to become physically fit. This helps us to push ourselves in tough times. It is also known as the comeback or the recovery chemical.
Can you figure out now that those who are rich and fit may miss serotonin. Those who are poor often miss dopamine since the goal of most of the people is to be rich. The misers miss serotonin, lonely people miss the oxytocin. And so on…
So, eventually we want DOSE to be completely happy. How to trigger them?
a) To achieve dopamine just set goals. Either you will achieve them or you won’t. but the expectation of reward will release dopamine.
b) For oxytocin, you need an inner circle and be raw with them. You hug, touch or kiss them but never break their trust.
c) For serotonin, contribute selflessly to others-it may be you time or effort.
d) To get endorphins, start working out till you see the muscle breaking. His is going to help you in tough times.
Wishing you a doseful of happiness!