Fun is defined as something that provides mirth or amusement. Ubiquitous idioms include the word fun. We had a barrel of fun at the party. He is more fun than a barrel of monkeys. It was fun while it lasted. AWHFY?!
We may think of fun as trivial; something to do after we work. However, it’s important for our survival; when we are having fun, we are happy.
Fun equates to happiness. And, these four chemicals activate happiness: dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and endorphins. They are all super important for our functioning body.
We all know what we feel when we are having fun. We smile and laugh a lot. We feel elated and close to the people we are with. Well, there is a reason. Happiness is serious business.
When we are happy, dopamine is in the room. As defined in Psychology Today, dopamine is a neurotransmitter that helps control the brain’s reward and pleasure centers. Dopamine also helps regulate movement and emotional responses, and it enables us not only to see rewards, but to take action to move toward them.
If you want to get a hit of dopamine, set a goal of making those key lime cupcakes with your daughter, and achieve it. Fun! Reward: dopamine!
Another chemical in the brain related to pleasure is serotonin. “It’s a neurotransmitter that affects mood, appetite, and libido, and has been shown to kill one type of cancer cell, fueling hope for new drug therapies as well as concern that popular antidepressants interfere with serotonin's cancer-fighting properties,” Megan Olden (Psychology Today)
Then, there is the cuddle hormone. Go ahead; get out that fun game of twister and hug someone. The powerful neurotransmitter oxytocin is released. As defined in WebMD, oxytocin creates intimacy, trust, and builds healthy relationships. When we hug or kiss a loved one, oxytocin levels increase. In fact, the hormone plays a huge role in pair bonding.
And, finally when you exercise, and we hope exercise is a fun activity, endorphins are released. They are a hormonal compound that is made by the body and are similar in structure and effect to opiate drugs. They release essential compounds that permit humans to endure childbirth, accidents, and strenuous everyday activities. (Medicine.Net)
Yet, laughter is one of the easiest way to induce endorphin release! But, do it with your pals for a better result. Cristen Conger, in How Stuff Works-- Five Ways to Maximize Happiness, cites expert Robert Provine. He says laughter is specifically a social structure, something that connects humans with one another in a profound way.” According to his findings, people are 30 percent more likely to laugh in a social setting that warrants it than when alone with humor-inducing media. (Provine). Conger continues, “By and large, people who form the strongest bonds with others exhibit the most happiness. This holds true among younger people as well, according to a 2002 student survey at the University of Illinois. Students who reported the highest happiness levels all enjoyed solid friend and family connections and dedicated time to nurturing those relationships on a regular basis (Wallis et al].”
So, get out there, and be happy—induce the powerful hormones of dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, and endorphins. Fun does a body good!
Fun is at the core of Simply Chickie. We hope you laugh and have fun while perusing the Simply Chickie website. Share the fun with a friend. We’d love for you to review Simply Chickie on our website!
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