We have four main hormones; Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin and Endorphins, that help to control our feelings, emotions, mood and energy. This holiday season, I'd like to share with you some easy hacks that you can do to help keep your spirits up during the holidays and winter months.
Dopamine - our number one happiness hormone: Here are four things to do to amp up our dopamine.
1. Complete a task. Tony Robbins says in his daily five keys to thrive Progress = Happiness. Once you find that momentum of doing something - whatever that is, keep doing it. You don't want to have to start all over again. Progress = Happiness. So something simple this holiday? Complete a task - get something off your to do list - mark it off - bake your cookies, clean your house, get your Christmas lights up, go for a walk in the snow, pay your bills, do whatever you need to do to keep your momentum going.
2. Self Care - I'm going to bring this back to the airplane analogy - if you’re on a plane and there is enough turbulence where the air bags drop - you have to put the mask on YOU first. Then help your loved ones and others. If you are not taking the time to give back energy to yourself you have nothing left to give. And then resentment sets in or illness… 3. Enjoy yourself this holiday season - maybe that’s simply having a cup of hot chocolate with your kids or your lover, or you dog! Or having a huge feast with family. When I was young and growing up with my family, every Christmas we spend with friends. On Christmas day we would travel from home to home visiting our friends and celebrating with a visit, drinks, and home made cookies. That was Christmas. Once I had my own family, we had moved away from most of our friends and extended family and I had to learn how to create the same thrill at home with my three little girls. Spending December spreading Christmas magic came naturally to me, and I've worked really hard to make sure that December, especially Christmas is extra special for my kids. While I do still miss the travel, visiting, and social part of Christmas day, I've changed traditions at home and my children have grown up only celebrating Christmas with our little family. 4. Celebrate a win - what did you do that you are proud of this week? Or even today? Take the time to acknowledge the little wins to keep that momentum moving forward.
Oxytocin - The LOVE hormone. Did you know that our hearts have a 12 meter magnetic field that wrap around us? It’s very easy to stand in someone else's heart energy. And if you are feeling low in the love department, the simple act of petting your dog or cat or snuggling your fur baby can lift your oxytocin levels up.
If you have any babies in the family - just watch a baby sleep, or listen to it giggle - that lightens up anyone’s dreary day. A 30 second hug or a tight embrace allows you to connect to that other person’s energy and can fill you up ten fold just from a warm embrace Holding hands - never underestimate the power of touch. And if you are not a touchy feely person, give someone a compliment. Lifting someone else up makes you feel good and raises your spirits - don’t believe me? Try it! Serotonin! Ahhh good ol' serotonin - this is your MOOD hormone! What can you do to change your mood? Meditate, Run, find some sunshine, walk outside - be in nature. A good walk outside can help you sleep better, clear your mind, and bring in creative ideas. And lastly, we have Endorphins - Your natural Pain Killer
To active your endorphins this holiday season - watch comedy shows - laugh. Laughter is healing.
Eat some dark chocolate - 70% or more. Dark chocolate sends pleasure signals to your brain that makes you feel satisfied.
Exercise. That’s right, release your endorphins through exercise Here's an awareness aha moment - not one of these is activated by gluing yourself to electronics. No gaming, no social media, no scrolling.
Unplug - connect to your feel good hormones.