Help for the monkey brain

January 23, 2012 at 4:31 pm

Nothing to post today. Cal stayed home from school because he was super snotty and I pretended I was still sick too, although in reality I think I’m definitely on the up side of my cold. I wanted to go for a run this morning, but Chad was not on board with letting Cal stay home alone for a half hour while I squeezed in three miles. What do you think? Is 10 1/2 old enough to stay home alone for half an hour? So I’m saying that it’s Chad fault that I did nothing today. I’m still tentatively planning to go for a three mile run tonight while the rest of the family goes for an evening walk. We’ll see. The laziness has set in.

In lieu of an actual post about my fascinating life, here is a quote that Chad sent to me some time ago via The_Revisionist on Reddit. It was really a long time ago, so I can’t find a link directly to this on Reddit, but I really liked it so I saved it for just such an occasion.

There are multiple kinds of happiness and some are better than others. The best kind of happiness comes from habits and morals.

Technically, the only things you like are brain chemicals.

Your stupid monkey brain will shoot out some of these chemicals whenever you get some chocolate or hump something. Very random and unsatisfying. But you can hack your brain to release these at regular intervals.

How? You need a mindful way of living that is pleasurable in itself. That typically means a habituated and ethical life, which can help you recognize the importance of your actions. Then, both pleasure and pain are subservient to a larger system of living. When you pursue this mindful ethical way of living, the duties of that life become themselves pleasurable. That means feel-good chemicals for the monkey brain.

Sounds good, huh? I have to say that so far today I haven’t produced too many feel-good  brain chemicals. Maybe if I go for that run later I’ll get some? I’m trying to remind myself to live in such a way that I feel good about it!