Michael Matthews Bigger Leaner Stronger The Simple Science of Building the Ultimate Male Body.pdf

Dont expect these abilities to come easily though

Info icon This preview shows pages 76–78. Sign up to view the full content.

Don’t expect these abilities to come easily, though. “Reprogramming” yourself to favor the harder choices is going to be uncomfortable. You might find it overwhelming at first. You’re going to be drawn back to what’s familiar. Stay the course, however, and the pieces will start falling into place. You’ll find it easier and easier to say no to the distractions and yes to the things you need to do without getting frazzled. So, now that we’ve established what willpower consists of and what the stakes are, let’s move on to the physiology of desire and why it can sometimes make it so hard to resist being “bad.” YOUR BRAIN ON DOPAMINE: WHY THE IDEA OF GIVING IN FEELS SO GOOD A real willpower challenge isn’t a fleeting, “wouldn’t that be nice” thought that
Image of page 76

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

disappears as quickly as it came. It’s more like an all-consuming battle raging inside of you between good and evil, virtue and sin, and yin and yang, and you feel it physically. What’s going on? Well, physiologically speaking, you’re experiencing your brain when it’s fixated on a promise of reward. Once you catch sight of that cheeseburger, a chemical called dopamine gushes through your brain. All of a sudden, all that matters in life in that greasy, delicious pile of meat, cheese, and bun. The dopamine tells your brain that you must consume that sandwich now, no matter the cost, or suffer the ghastly consequences. 4 To make matters even worse, your brain is now anticipating the imminent spike in insulin and energy, so it begins to lower your blood sugar levels. This, in turn, makes you crave the burger even more. 5 And next thing you know, you’re in line, anxiously waiting your turn to order one. You see, once you become aware of an opportunity to score a reward, your brain squirts out dopamine to tell us that this indeed is the droid we’re looking for. It plays up the sweet song of immediate gratification and plays down any chatter about long-term consequences. 6 The chemical isn’t engineered to make us feel happy and content, though—its role is to stimulate us to action, and it does this by arousing us, sharpening our focus, and revving up our drive us to do something to get our hands on the prize. 7 That’s its carrot that it dangles for us. It has a stick too: when dopamine is released, it also triggers the release of stress hormones that make us feel anxious. 8 This is why the more we think about the reward we want, the more important it becomes to us. The more we think we have to get it now. We don’t realize, however, that the stress we feel isn’t caused by not having the apple pie, pair of shoes, or Candy Crush trophy—it’s caused by the desire itself. It’s dopamine’s emotional tool for making sure we obey its commands.
Image of page 77
Image of page 78
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.
  • Winter '17
  • Santos O'Neill Garcia
  • History

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern