To you, the reader, who already knows that Ultimate Happiness can only be found in giving.
Although human babies are the most vulnerable babies in the animal kingdom (at least certainly in the mammalian kingdom), love is what kept us alive in our early years. Without the mother’s love, babies are constantly on fight or flight, and on the “Protection” mode because they aren’t certain for their security, food and survival. With love around, babies are on “Growth” mode. And adults are big babies, so, yeah, they need this sense of love in order to be in the “growth” mode, and the biggest fear of all is the fear that we won’t be loved and get rejected. That’s why fear of rejection is one of the most popular fears of a human, because it’s threatening our very survival.
We all have felt (I hope) the beautiful emotion of love in our lives, when it seems like a sunny day, and everything is so bright, beautiful and warm and we are being open to everything and everyone.
As a matter of fact, although some of us (or all of us) have been hurt in the past by someone, and chose to close up the doors of their emotions, love is the food of our spirit and in extention of our body and mind. We can’t survive without it for long, as we can’t survive without food or water for long. This is grounded in our very nature and biology.
The fact is, that all positive emotions are a kind of love:
- Curiosity is the love for the unknown.
- Passion and Excitement are the love for adventure (+the unknown).
- Vitality and Exuberence is love for peak health and energy.
- Gratitude is love for everything that we appreciate in our lives.
- Cheerfulness is love for fun, play and smiles.
- Sooo many emotions, and at their base is some form of love.
All communication is either a loving response or a cry for help.
So, how can we turn ON our “Growth mode” and STOP being in “Protection mode”?
We can’t be on both modes at the same time. It’s Fight/Flight/Freeze VS Pause&Plan/Relaxation response. What doesn’t grow, dies. We can’t step forward into growth and at the same time step backwards into safety.
Scientists have found that what represents the emotion of love in the human body, in our biochemistry, is the molecule “Oxytocin“:
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Besides the hormone of lactation and birth, OXYTOCIN is the hormone of real connection (or love if you prefer) between people (look morality, trust etc.).
Just awesome what Paul Zak says. That explains simply many of the human behaviours, like generosity or the lack of it, why people who had an adventure together are feeling more connected afterwards and why a child, even when it grows up needs hugs.
7 Ways to release oxytocin and enter “Growth & Loving Mode”:
1 – Hugs
Many of them (>8 per day), whatever your age. Even hugging yourself does something. But real hugs, heart to hear are the most beneficial and warming ever. 🙂 Hugging an angry person (if he is not VERY VERY anrgy), relaxes him. Hugging when stressed, releases or at least reduces the stress.
Whenever you find the opportunity, do it. Many times per day 🙂 And watch your life and relationships transforming.
2 – Adventurous Lifestyle
This is surely a NEED for some people (myself included!!), but there is really no need to go to the wild forests of the Amazon to get in growth mode… You can learn how to make everything, even the visit to the grocery store look like a funny adventure. It’s a very useful skill, that not all of us have, but all of us can build and its easy:
Just start roleplaying and create a funny or dramatic or whatever storyline for your adventure and give roles to everyone in your group. This alone can make an adventure out of nowhere, and sometimes a really good adventure. And tell me later if you feel more connected to the other people of your group or not. 🙂 It will surely be fun at the very least! I will soon have a post dedicated on Improvisation for that reason. Faking till you become it is one of the best ways to feel whatever emotion you want. 🙂
Get on a rollercoaster, or do some crazy adventurous shit with your partner, your friends or your family. Bunjee Jumping, Snowboarding, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (that includes hugs too!!! 🙂 ) fall from an airplane, whatever bursts your adrenalin while being with another person. This will surely bond you if you also make sure all of you survive after that! 😀
Imagine what your life would be like, if you lived for a year like Louis:
3 – Great Sex
Of course you didn’t need me to tell you, but that’s one more reason to do it (here are 10 reasons). Be careful of who you want to connect with, or not.. You surely don’t want to have a big nasty headache later on because you didn’t know what you were doing or what each of you wanted.. 😛
Please note that MOST of the benefits of great sex are because of this hormone. So don’t underestimate oxytocin!!
4 – Laughter and Duchenne Smiles
Oxytocin is also one of the most effective hormones that are released during laughter. So when you laugh you have the same benefits as having sex, but as a lesser degree… But that’s still a nice reason to laugh more 😉
You surely know that laughter is contagious, so even if you start laughing for no reason, most of the times, other people will start laughing too. Smiles too. Especially the big, heart ones, that make our eyes like crow’s feet. These smiles are called Duchenne’s.
But if you are not doing it already, start being with more playful and cheerful people around you, watching 9gag tv or pics, and having more fun in general. It’s truly a life saver!
5 – Touch and Warmth
(Especially) Massage is a great (and relaxing) way to release oxytocin into your bloodstream (even more if it leads to -great- sex!).. 😉
Find people who love doing massage and schedule sessions to do for each other if you dont already have a partner. It’s trully necessary for our wellbeing, especially after stressing times, beyond limits workouts, Xtreme sports, etc… 😉
6 – Spa / Sauna / Hot tub
Extention of the above is sharing these luxuries with someone, as it increases your feeling of connection with them. Whenever you find an opportunity for free/cheap coupons massage/spa, grab it by the hair and share it.
Don’t forget that’s in the Growth mode that the best million-dollar ideas are found, also backing you up with the energy to follow through the first steps.. 🙂
So investing in your relaxation, and in those moments, is investing in your future 🙂
Also you might be interested in checking this post I found on Tim Ferriss’s blog: Are Saunas the Next Big Performance-Enhancing “Drug”?
7 – Loving/Kindness Meditation
When you just sit, relax, close your eyes, and start thinking about your love for other people, even if it’s only one person, you raise your oxytocin levels, feeling connected more with that person (/people) and also entering “growth mode” while EASILY leaving fof (protection mode). Loving/Kindness meditation has been found to has this effect more than mindfulness meditation.
For more ways to release oxytocin, you can read here.
Right now, choose 1 of the above that suits you the most, and write a word in the comments below about what and how are you going to implement it for the next 7 days in order to improve the quality of your life and relationships! It will take you a minute and it truly means a lot to me and the development of TeoKark.com. Thanks a lot 🙂