Learn simple ways to naturally release endorphins and feel good from within
That recent times have been challenging is an understatement. But most of us have accepted them, taken them in our stride and get on with living our lives. Which is a good thing. What’s not so great is if you’re pushing your sadness, anxiety, stress, or even depression away. The good news is that all is not lost as we have a few natural ways that can get your endorphins come alive, helping you feel good again.
Endorphins are the body’s natural “feel-good” hormone. They are released by the pituitary gland into the body. The hormone reduces stress, assists in pain management, and boosts happiness.
Endorphins are a natural opioid which help us feel euphoric. This is the main reason why many of us become addicted to things that may release endorphins- however, in this case, we mean good things. There are many ways you can increase your endorphin release and feel good more often.
We compiled a list of natural ways you can do so. Feeling good is important and so follow a few of our tips and get those endorphins going!
Laugh out loud (LOL) – Laughter is the best medicine indeed! The health benefits of laughing and smiling are incredibly fascinating. It has been proven to increase the release of endorphins and have multiple health benefits. Children laugh 300 times a day whereas adults roughly laugh only 5 times a day. Laughing boosts your energy, reduce stress hormones, boost immune function, boosts efficiency, and gives a sense of well-being.
Sweat it out – Exercise releases endorphins. So much so that health professionals will often prescribe regular exercise to those who suffer with depression and anxiety. It was proven that exercise has the ability to act in the same way as some antidepressants, for instance the “runners high”. This is because of the release of endorphins. Once you exercise regularly you realize how it uplifts your mood thus people become addicted and feel down when they do not exercise for long periods of time. So, exercise your way into being happy.
Be generous – The act of giving activates the pleasure centre in the brain. Although there is not as much research on this aspect yet, but haven’t you ever felt good when you gift your grandchildren? The act of giving in turn can release endorphins. This is a great way to feel good – by helping others and those in need. Helping others, can in fact help you. This is a great initiative too when you are feeling down to simply get up and do something good for other who are in need.
The power of aroma – Aromatherapy has the ability to uplift your mood. Vanilla, lavender, geranium are great scents that can increase the production of endorphins. Vanilla releases endorphins reduce anxiety and help overcome depression. The same applies to lavender and geranium, it has been proven to reduce stress, depressive symptoms but also curb insomnia. These scents can be incorporated into your daily lives but add few drops of these essential oils on your wrists, diffusers, or even by adding some essential oil to your bath. It is a tiny component that will aid your endorphin release and change your perspective.
Add some chillies – For people who love to eat spicy food. A little kick of heat in your dish will help produce endorphins. Spicy foods such as chilis, peppers, and other spicy components activate a pain sensation in the mouth which in turn prompts endorphins. Avoid over doing it since it can cause ulcer but a bite of green chilli once in a while will do no harm.
Apps to relax and unwind
Calm – Calm is a free relaxation app, that is available for iPhone and Android. The App is the perfect solution to unwind before bedtime. When setting up your account, you can choose a voice – there are many options from male/female, deep/high. These voices will guide you through meditations.
Aside from a variety of meditation practices, the app also provides different breathing exercises and sounds that will help you relax and find your inner peace. You can decide for yourself how long you want to dedicate your time to these practices. A goodnight sleep is essential for a balanced and relaxed body, therefore the Calm app even offers good night stories, to help make you sleep like a baby. If you feel like taking your dreams to the next level, thi app will guide you to sleep.
Shine: Calm, Anxiety & Stress – This is a daily self-care app and was featured as “Best of 2020” by the App store. The app helps you to create a daily self-care ritual and reminds you to take care of yourself and your body. This routine includes a daily meditation – you can choose from a variety of practices, depending on what you need the most right at the moment. It also features reflections and journaling exercises. However, the Shine offers you more than just exercises, it gives you the opportunity to connect to a supportive and inclusive community, which helps you to deal with the things you may be going through at the moment.
Color Puzzle Game – Sometimes you just need to add a little colour to your life. The Color Puzzle Game is all about matching the blocks to form hues of colours with more than 300+ levels. The App is available for iPhone and Android and has a rating of 4.7 stars of 5. Research shows that engaging in activities like colouring puzzles can help people with their anxiety, focus, and put them into a state of meditation. If you like puzzles and need a way to relax, you definitely should try this app.
Breath: Relax & Focus – The right breathing technique can help reduce anxiety, falling asleep, focusing, and boost positivity. That is exactly what the Breath app is made for. The App is available for iPhone and Android and has a rating of 4.8 stars of 5. The app offers a collection of different breathing exercises. Depending on your goal or the mood you are in, you can choose a breathing exercise, customise according to your need, keep track of progress, breath hold test from categories and many more.
Wysa: Stress, Sleep & Mindfulness Therapy Chatbot – Wysa is a chatbot that you can chat with. With this app you can try out free mindfulness exercises to reduce anxiety, manage stress levels and talk to the cute penguin. The App is available for iPhone and Android and has a rating of 4.8 stars of 5. You can use Wysa to talk or vent or reflect through your day. You can also practise cognitive behavioural therapy techniques and much more.
Choices that you make will have an impact on your well-being. If you get out more often, laugh wholeheartedly, smell the roses you will be feel-good about life.