Because you deserve to smile more.
Low dopamine levels can lead to lack of motivation, fatigue, addictive behavior, mood swings, memory loss and even depression. Instead of running to a doctor for meds for depression or turning to unhealthy ways (chocolate, anyone) to boost your mood, why not first try to increase your dopamine naturally?
Here are some proven chemical-free ways to raise dopamine in the brain and get you smiling again:
1. Shake it off. Dance, Skip, jump, run, tumble, fly — exert yourself! It doesn’t need to be a big giant workout every day, just do something physical to raise your heart rate for at least one full minute.
2. Pray and be quiet. Learn how to take five minutes a day to pray and/or meditate. Sit in silence and in gratitude for that time.
3. Laugh out loud. Use the Internet to laugh! There are so many funny things online now (Grumpy Cat?!) Spend a minute each day watching, reading or listening to something funny.
4. Breathe better. This may sound strange, but we have actually forgotten how to breathe. When you breathe from your chest and not your diaphragm your body doesn’t operate as well. So take a minute to focus on your breathe and really breathe deeply.
5. Share your story. Join a support group, connect with others, reach out to friends and family and if your depression is really debilitating seek out professional help. Remember: Therapy doesn’t have to suck.
6. Eat your lima beans. Also, almonds, apples, avocado, bananas, beets, chocolate, coffee, fava beans, green leafy vegetables, green tea, lima beans, oatmeal, sea vegetables, sesame and pumpkin seeds, turmeric, watermelon, and wheat germ.
7. Take your vitamins. There are tons of websites and information about different supplements to increase dopamine in the brain. (Always consult a doctor before taking any new supplements!)