The culture of dopamine

Press Ctrl + Alt + Del to reboot the system - it's stress's fault.

Since Elizabeth II declared '92 as "annus horribilis",  April has been dedicated to raising awareness about the negative consequences of chronic stress, and that's what we're talking about this week, as we love jumping on all bandwagons.


Modern life is a stressed-out life, mate...

Back when we were roaming the jungle in loincloths, stress served as a bloody brilliant evolutionary defense mechanism: a lion appeared, you'd start running like there's no tomorrow and flee from danger.

Since then, our brains haven't evolved much (or at all), but the "perceived threats" have: I'm gonna be late for work, the boss is gonna give me the sack, I gotta finish this report, I won't get a good seat on the tube... "lions" everywhere.

Always banging on about how chill and calm it is, like a cup of tea on a Sunday morning. But behind closed doors, everyone's running around like headless chickens, stressing their heads off. It's like we're all in some mad race to be the most stressed out sod in the neighbourhood.


...and you're a dopamine junkie to relieve it, ain't ya? 

And in that case you're living in, a little hamster on a wheel, if we stop to analyse your day-to-day, it doesn't help much:

🟠 You've got this tendency and they're pushing you towards toxic hyper productivity and Sisyphean tasks.

Put plainly, they've got you thinking and you're kinda into the whole vibe of adding more tasks to your day than the number of angry calls a Vodafone operator gets. Self-demand, perfectionism, 'I want in too'... You've got more on your plate than time available, and that's why you come home physically and mentally knackered.

🟠 Feeling tired? - Mental anaesthesia or 'numbing'

Once you're home, you don't have energy for your partner, your Ficus, or even yourself. What do you do? You resort to series, social media... modern lifebuoys, recovery mode, and battery-saving ON to avoid thinking, feeling, and unconsciously demanding 'me time' that you haven't had until now. Anything goes here: a like on social media, harvesting crops in your favorite mobile game... any immediate gratification will do the trick.

🟠 The next day, it's all about neuro-enhancement (regular doping) and starting all over again.

You stayed up late and haven't slept well. Solution to be productive again? Caffeine, nootropics, cold shower... even some other stuff (as Ant McPartlin would say to Declan Donnelly) as remedies to ensure maximum performance and peace of mind.


Constant search for dopamine to cover up stress

TL;DR: Gambling, clickbait, shorts, TikToks, scrolling, short messages, swipes, likes... give you instant gratification (literally 1 to 3 seconds) but don't solve the stress you've hardened like the holes that haven't worked in years in the shower head


Want a positive ending? Well, here are 3 tips for managing the stress in your life without resorting to continuous dopamine hits, which the undersigned tries to practice and fails at least once a week.

🟡 Don´t move your f*ckin´*ss. 😴

Weekend, free time... try doing NOTHING. No podcasts, no restaurants, no hobbies, no touching your phone. Let the kids get bored (The Times’s article) because that only brings creativity and good things.

🟡 Even if it's just once in your life, practice the "ain't nobody got time for that. 😵

Next time you make a to-do list on your phone, post-it, or planner, add an estimate of the time it'll take you (and you'll probably be too generous). When the total surpasses 8 hours... well, it's time to remove something (except sleeping, obviously).

🟡 Stay chill and stay fucking bad. 🎭

The opposite of stress isn't relaxation and it isn't focused activity either. It's about being able to navigate through moments of hype and low without pushing them away or ignoring them. Relaxing and disconnecting can be a means to an end... but for another purpose: simply being able to BE with a feeling without diverting attention.


And we could add that what doesn't contribute, gets pushed aside (FACTS); that you make yourself a daily sandwich with things that bring pure joy; that you limit the use of your phone; that you cleanse, exfoliate, and hydrate your face and your life daily; that you're valued for who you are and not just for what you do... but we don't want to stress you out with too many stimuli or lists to tick off.

Is way better  to leave yourself some space to do absolutely nothing. 

PS: This week's post is sponsored by our Morning Glory Pack, our conscious daily ritual, stress-free and full of good vibes. The day may throw challenges your way, but at least start it off with a positive attitude and Zen energy.


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