Our brain and nervous system is good at getting us to do things over and over again. They make an action feel good by releasing dopamine. New evidence shows that scratching an itch feels so good, and is hard to stop, because the brain releases dopamine. Dopamine, to oversimplify it, makes us feel good when released.
We get the same dump of dopamine when we check our phone and see that little red heart on our Instagram feed. Someone liked my post! It’s why it’s hard to put down, easy to constantly check and hard to stop checking even when we know nothing new is there.
Exercise can create the same feelings and so can a certain food we love. There’s a lot going on subconsciously that's hard to be aware of. If we aren’t aware of it, we can let these things run rampant and take over our life. Ever hear your phone ding and feel the sudden anxiety of not checking it immediately? Yeah, me too.
While there’s nothing we can do to control our brains, creating an awareness around these habits and the tricks we can play on ourselves can pay off.