When you start to take a deep dive into the world of dopamine and how it works in your body you start to understand how your motivation can come and go and how it effects the way you feel on a daily basis. You can then start to manipulate it to your advantage on a daily basis.
First thing you need to know is we all have a baseline of dopamine, some of us higher and some of us lower, that person that always is motivated and gets a lot of stuff done on a daily basis typically has a higher baseline than others.
That baseline will go through peaks and valleys depending on what you do and how excited it makes you it.
If we can increase your dopamine slightly and have it stay slightly raised for longer periods we’ll be more motivated and get more done on a daily basis.
The higher that peak of a dopamine hits though for example doing cocaine or meth can give you a 10x surge then the lower that valley becomes on the other side of that “high” thats part of the reason why people get addicted and go back for more. Sugar does something similar.
The problem largely becomes when we start doing things that we don’t have to work hard for and get a huge dopamine spike that makes us feel good and a huge valley where we feel like crap. There’s a lot of things people become addicted to do that do this- drugs, sugar, porn all fall under this category, they leave you feeling unmotivated and like shit after.
There are things that can increase our dopamine and also keep a sustained release after that makes us feel good and motivated for hours later. They typically take hard work first and then a increase and steady supply of dopamine afterwards.
The first and foremost thing you can do to increase dopamine is workout, training leads to an 1.5-2x increase in dopamine depending on how much you enjoy training, but it takes hard work first and then a payoff afterwards. Thats why you never really hear people regretting training afterwards, ever hear of the runners “high” dopamine!
The next thing you can do is cold immersion, this is one of the benefits of cold shower or cold baths is it will increase dopamine up to 3x and then keep it up for hours afterwards. Cold baths are not fun and they are uncomfortable but Im telling you the feeling I have afterwards is absolutely amazing.
When you have strategies to help you with using dopamine properly you can really take advantage of how your motivation works. When you have “crutches” like sugar or porn that give you instant dopamine highs without earning it you get those crashes and it is in control of you!