Endorphins are natural “feel good” hormones and are produced in the brain during intense physical activity. Photo / 123rf
Happiness is almost a global obsession these days. The self-help shelves of bookstores and online websites are full of offers that promise to help you find or achieve happiness.
We could define happiness as
just “feel good”. It doesn’t mean that life is perfect, but generally, we have a sense of direction, purpose, and meaning in our lives. When we have a general feeling of satisfaction and contentment, we can say that we are happy.
For many, however, happiness is hard to come by. Research shows evidence of a rising tide of this spirit of doom in most advanced societies. A decline in the number of people who consider themselves “happy” has been documented and appears to be consistent with the skyrocketing rise in cases of depression over the past decade.
There has been an increase in prescribed anti-depressant medications and many of us are now taking mood-enhancing drugs for this now very common condition that was once a rare disease.
One of the drawbacks of this “loss of happiness” is the need to replace what has been lost with external sources such as alcohol and drugs, food and overeating, relationships or material objects.
Some of these things may provide temporary relief but do not provide long-term happiness, joy, peace, or contentment. Could it be that these things are being lost to us as our world becomes increasingly sedentary and inactive?
The widespread lack of physical activity in our ‘easy and comfortable’ modern technology driven lives means that we see a continuous drop in endorphin levels.
Endorphins are nature’s “feel good” hormones and are produced in the brain during intense physical activity. Endorphins improve your mood, calm you down, relieve stress AND make you happy. They improve your mood long after the exercise session is over and help us stay mentally and emotionally stable.
You could call it “moving meditation”. After a workout, you’ll often find that you’ve forgotten the irritations of the day, and when you regularly eliminate your daily stresses through physical activity, the resulting energy and optimism can help keep you clear. and focused, positively impacting all aspects of your life. .
Many people miss out on this natural “inner” magic because they think they’re too busy, don’t have time, are too stressed, or just don’t have time. no need to take the time to exercise.
But when you neglect your health and your body, all of your life goals balance on a shaky platform, which makes being “happy” so much more elusive.
You could say that happiness is one of the key ingredients of health. Improving physical condition not only improves the body on the outside, but gives us inner peace and harmony, a sense of being whole and complete within. From this radiates happiness – all from within.
This then leads to that state of appreciation, to a feeling of satisfaction and contentment with your lot in life, and finally to a perception of balance and peace. No pill can ever match those feelings…and…no prescription required.
Somehow; we must once again take pride in being in control of our own lives, health, bodies and well-being and the answer is not in doctors and pills – it is inside each of us. This simple exercise solution is readily available for just a little time and effort and if you listen to the messages your body is sending you that something is missing, it might say “Do I REALLY need to exercise? “
Carolyn Hansen is co-owner of Anytime Fitness