The short answer is Dopamine management. Our body responds to hormones and chemicals when it comes to love and motivation. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter. Since I have to keep it simple, all you need to know is that it is a chemical that works as a messenger. Transmitting signals or messages is not the only function of dopamine. It also helps us feel pleasure. It keeps the motivation going.
That’s true, dopamine helps us feel good and hence keeps us motivated. But when is it released? It is released during pleasurable activities such as:
- Food consumption
- Drug abuse
- Getting a message (you heard that right)
- Regular exercising
- Playing videogames
An experiment was performed on mice where dopamine was released when the mice would push a button. They soon started showing addictive behavior and kept pushing the button again and again. Soon the mice lacked the motivation to do anything. They wouldn’t even eat or drink and would keep pushing the button to get ‘the dope’. Drug addicts showed similar behavior.
Dopamine detox is the key. Shed off the excessive addiction to the chemical by observing dry – off the grid- periods. Once your body is used to the low levels of dopamine, you will seriously start putting in hours doing productive work. Dopamine is also released after you read a book, or do some exercise, but the quantity is low and the activity is hard. Due to a luxurious lifestyle and addiction to on-screen entertainment, our bodies are used to high doses of dopamine. Motivation comes from the “good feeling” after something is done. Make your body accustomed to getting “that good feeling” after a productive activity. Start with Dopamine detox today to help you engage in productive activities while feeling good.
Does your kid lack focus?
Addiction, in any form, leads to decreased motivation. Vidoe games, youtube, and the internet have addictive tendencies. We tend to light up when we see the notification bar pop up. Coming back to helping your children with motivation challenges. First of all, you need to observe the number your child spends on the screen. More than four hours online is dangerous. Cutting down the hours is important. Just like with any other addiction, it needs to happen gradually.
Make your kid follow the following routine:
- Spend at least one day without the screen
- To keep his/her dopamine levels to the minimum, it is recommended that he be bored for sometime
- Whenever your kids feel bored, ask them to read a book or write something
- Communicate with them regularly and listen to what they have to say
- Increase the off-screen hours gradually till they are ready to spend a whole week without any kind of screen use. This includes no TV, no cellphone, no videogames, or anything that has a screen on it with graphics in it.
Once your children have gone without the screen for a whole week, make them follow a schedule for on-screen activities. It is going to be difficult but hey, I never said it was easy. Accomplishing things are difficult. Consistency and self-discipline are the key to success and sustainable motivation.
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