There are four chemicals in our brain that make us feel pleasure and avoid pain. Which are they? And how can we make them work on our favour?

In Meet Your Happy Chemicals, author Loretta Breuning explains that in the presence of something good, our brain releases four main chemicals: endorphin, oxytocin, serotonin, and dopamine. Interested in what they can do for us and how we can trigger or increase them? Take a look:

The happiness chemicals

Dopamine and the excitement to accomplish goals

Dopamine regulates motivation, causing individuals to initiate and persevere to reach their goals. It is triggered when we find something new and exciting in front of us, and when we know we are about to accomplish our objectives.

How can we make it work? Set new goals, either for your professional or for your personal life. Need a hint? Project-manage your life as if it was your job. Jon Werstemberg wrote a fantastic article on this topic where he gives advice on how to tackle your life goals:

“When you want to accomplish anything, the best way to do it is to stop dreaming. To focus and treat it like a project you’re being paid to do. A project that your job depends on. A project for the biggest asshole you’ll ever work for — yourself.”

> Conclusion 1: Have goals and go after them.

Oxytocin and the good feeling of trusting and loving

The “love molecule”, oxytocin, is the chemical foundation for trusting others. It is activated by positive social interactions, and it makes us care about others. By releasing oxytocin, our brain rewards us with a good feeling every time we strengthen our bonds with those we love.

continue to part 2