This Is How You Use DOPAMINE As A SUPERPOWER In Your Life | Anna Lembke

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From the time you were born, dopamine receptors in your brain have been firing off to keep you alive, to keep you motivated and keep you focused on pursuing something worthwhile. If you were born in the digital age of technology where electronic devices and social media started affecting your life directly or indirectly. You easily start feeling like you’re not enough, there’s something missing or like you should be doing more than you are.

Anna Lembke is a professor of psychiatry at Stanford University School of Medicine and chief of the Stanford Addiction Medicine Dual Diagnosis Clinic. She writes, “humans are the ultimate seekers.” Because of the way we are wired with the flood of hormones and chemicals released physiologically, we are always looking for the next dopamine hit without ever consciously identifying and labeling it. So, if it is in your nature to pursue a reward that is ever elusive, what reward do you decide to focus on?

In this episode, Anna and Tom explore why using the love of the pursuit as a drug of choice to get dopamine rewards can be very dangerous. Anna also explains the pleasure pain balance and why too much pleasure and too much positive overload is still a form of stress to watch out for.

Order Anna Lembke’s book, Dopamine Nation, Finding Balance in the Age of Indulgence:


0:00 | Introduction to Anna Lembke
1:00 | Pursuit is Rewarding
10:12 | Dopamine Insensitivity
16:17 | Pleasure Pain Balance
26:24 | Dopamine Reset
29:21 | Cannabis Use & Potency
34:07 | Pornography Addiction
39:56 | Truth Telling Reward
50:38 | Spirituality in Neurochemistry
59:05 | Social Media Connection
1:12:16 | To Exert Will or Not
1:25:10 | Danger in Striving


“We are hardwired to approach pleasure and avoid pain. And that’s really at the heart of our dopamine reward system.” [7:50]

“Any deviation from neutrality is actually a form of stress. In fact, biologists define stress as a deviation from neutrality.” [18:33]

“The richest countries in the world are the countries that have the most suicide, anxiety, depression, and physical pain.” [24:22]

“Because our primitive brains were not wired for an easy, hyper convenient world, we are suffering as a result of all of this access to these feel good things.” [25:10]

“If social media is the main place, or the only place where you get validation, and you feel connected, that’s really dangerous.” [1:06:55]

“Don’t do the easy thing to get rid of the pain, far better to suffer and come up with a long term solution” Tom Bilyeu [1:08:45]

“The interesting part here is it isn’t winning a championship, it’s becoming capable of a championship performance.” Tom Bilyeu [1:26:34]

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