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Baby Steps to an Anti-Depressant Brain

Let’s keep this simple. Poo Favorite Day

You may or may not have heard by now that our brain is wired to pay attention more frequently, and with great veracity, to what’s negative. This doesn’t mean that the good moments in life aren’t happening, we’re just not wired to pay attention to them.

Why?

Because as a human race, we’re wired to survive, not be happy.

BUT,

I have a theory that in this moment in time we’re going through an evolution as a species where because of the overabundance of things pulling our attention, we’re being thrusted into growing our awareness – the kind of awareness that breeds balance, well-being and a greater sense of what matters.

So people are being turned onto mindfulness more. More spaces are offering it, more institutions are studying it and there’s greater media to get the word out about it.

Mindfulness provides us with awareness and the opportunity to take wise actions to further balance this negativity bias.

This is an evolution of an enduring happiness, you on board?

One of the simple things we can do when we become aware of our current conditioning is be on the lookout for the happy moments.
By happy moments I don’t mean just the drunken pleasures of life, I mean the whole spectrum from the small delights of enjoying a hot cup of tea, the sunshine splashing on your face, watching your child do something new for the first time (instead of being on your phone), or even feeling the relief from anxiety or depressive symptoms.

It’s about recognizing on a deep level that like the life of a butterfly or a flower, life is short and precious.

Mindfulness provides the opening, and then we have to intentionally notice these as they arise. From there we can make the choice to savor, appreciate and be grateful for them.

One thing I talk about is Uncovering Happiness, is that there are things we can do to ignite out natural anti-depressants and uncover that enduring sense of well-being. These micro-happy-moments of life can create small shifts in the brain that if practiced, savored and repeated can encourage positive neuroplasticity and an anti-depressant brain.

Take time today, maybe even this moment to consider, what’s good right now? If you notice something, let it linger…

As always, please share your thoughts, stories and questions below. Your interaction creates a living wisdom for us all to benefit from.

Baby Steps to an Anti-Depressant Brain

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is creator of the six month online program A Course in Mindful Living, author of the book Uncovering Happiness: Overcoming Depression with Mindfulness and Self-Compassion, The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Mindfulness Meditations for the Anxious Traveler: Quick Exercises to Calm Your Mind, the premier eCourse Basics of Mindfulness Meditation: A 28 Day Program, the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work™ program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations. Join The Now Effect Community for free Daily Now Moments and a Weekly Newsletter. Dr. Goldstein is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles.


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APA Reference
Goldstein, E. (2015). Baby Steps to an Anti-Depressant Brain. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 18, 2018, from https://blogs.psychcentral.com/mindfulness/2015/01/baby-steps-to-an-anti-depressant-brain/

 

Last updated: 16 Jan 2015
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 16 Jan 2015
Published on PsychCentral.com. All rights reserved.