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It’s Time to Learn How to Microdose Anticipation

It’s Time to Learn How to Microdose Anticipation
When people can no longer look forward to vacations, weddings, or other happy events, they often struggle psychologically. Experts share how to regain that feeling during a pandemic.


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The sources of human happiness

The sources of human happiness

Much of life's bliss is enveloped in expectation, in looking forward to something new. But as soon as that new something happens, we often turn our thoughts ahead to the next expected joy or novelty.




“Having things to look forward to is a major coping strategy. It helps us recover and adapt to stressors.”

Christian Waugh



The brain’s ability to look ahead

This ability is what separates us from most animals.

Our frontal lobe is the one that helps us anticipate and make decisions, and that certainly is a higher-level function. Opposed to this is the emotional part of the brain (the “more primitive” lower brain) which at times can clash with and overwhelm the deliberative brain.



Anticipation can reduce stress

The human brain can concentrate only on a couple things at a time. So, when we have positive anticipatory things in our mind, there is less room for negative thoughts.



The dark side of anticipation

The same parts of the human mind that allow people to imagine the future and anticipate happy events are also the ones that allow for worrying and imagining worst-case scenarios.

While these can be helpful in moderate doses, too much worrying can promote anxiety and despair.



Too wrapped up in future plans

Especially in uncertain times, being too wrapped up in future plans and pleasures does not always bring happiness.

  • If you find that the thoughts you’re having about the future are not productive, anchoring yourself in the moment can be a good thing.
  • Inject life with small, short-term sources of happy anticipation. You can still anticipate positive events, but you may have to scale it back ( for example, plan a cocktail-hour call with a good friend in the following weekend).




What creates happiness in the brain

  • Dopamine: The happy chemical that our brain releases when we see reward or pleasure in sight.
  • Oxytocin: A hormone and a neurotransmitter, it gets released when we...
  • Happiness as a choice

    Once you realize that happiness is predominantly an internal process, you will gradually understand that happiness is also a choice, and you will be able to transcend the limits of what it is that makes you happy.

    9 Tips To Give Constructive Criticism

    1. Use the "feedback sandwich" method when advising. Give a positive comment, then the feedback that could potentially be construed as criticism, and finish by reiterating the positive. Th...

    Constructive Criticism

    However needed it may be, people often view criticism as hurtful and feel attacked. And that puts them on the defensive, meaning they won’t be able to truly absorb what’s being criticized.

    That’s why constructive criticism is a helpful skill to develop when dealing with other people. Knowing how to do it drastically affects how the message is received.

    Depression as Chronic Sadness

    Depression and mental illness are long associated with being sad and mentally ill people and those fighting mental disorders are judged by the misleading emotional states like happiness, which have...

    Using Therapy

    Many people believe therapy is something you need when you are not satisfied, happy or content with life.

    Mental illnesses go far beyond being happy or sad, and many people that don't think they need therapy may, in fact, be in acute need of it.

    Happy Pills

    • It’s a myth that mental health and happiness mean the same thing.
    • Happiness is just another emotional state, like sadness.
    • Depression is portrayed as not being happy, which is untrue.
    • The pill-popping generations label anti-depressant pills as Happy Pills, which is also misleading.

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