005: Dr. Loretta Breuning: The Science of Positivity and Happy Brain Chemicals



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Loretta Breuning, PhD, is founder of the Inner Mammal Institute, which helps you train your mammal brain for more happy chemicals. She’s Professor Emerita at California State University, East Bay, and the author of Habits of a Happy Brain: Retrain your brain to boost your serotonin, dopamine, oxytocin and endorphin. Her new book, The Science of Positivity: Stop Negative Thought Patterns By Changing Your Brain Chemistry, is available on Amazon today.


  • Our ability to build new connections in the brain.
  • The brain gets more efficient at what it does, it conducts electricity faster, it feels natural.
  • How long does it take to form a new habit?
  • The brain is designed to learn from whatever feels good and whatever feels bad.
  • The key is to "Focus on what you want rather than what you don’t want".
  • It's important to find a substitute for the old habit and find your Healthy distraction.  
  • The “Hell-in-a-hand-basket feeling”
  • What happens when you can’t find positives in your life?
  • How can I feel good with what I have?  
  • You always have a choice
  • Social comparison is just a habit of the brain.
  • Your self-criticism is an illusion.
  • The brain is trained to look for negativity.
  • Anytime something hurt you, you brain will protect you from ever repeating that experience.
  • The effect of herd instinct (agreeable shitty experience).
  • Reproductive success
    • We are wired for better partners = better genes for better survival
    • Better partners = better nutrition and better territory
  • The Addiction to Dopamine through our smartphones.
  • What are Dopamine, Oxytocin, and Serotonin?

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