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Unlocking Happiness: Neuroscience-Backed Practices for a Healthier, Happier You

Many of us set resolutions for the new year, embark on self-improvement missions every few months, and strive to start each week on the right foot. But why? Deep down, our goal is happiness – improved health and better relationships with others. So, what practices will make you happier? Here are a few things NOT to do – validated by neuroscience, clinical sciences, and centuries of naturopathic medicine.

creativity laid on on the ground with dried flowers, watercolors, and a sketchbook

  1. Negative Self-Talk: Self-regulation, the ability to control thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, is crucial. Negative self-talk undermines self-regulation, magnifying stress effects on the body and mind. Combat this by practicing positive affirmations, gratitude, and approaching challenges with curiosity, not judgment.

  2. Hydrate, Don't Just Caffeinate: Water makes you happy! Serotonin and dopamine, neurotransmitters influencing mood, require proper hydration. Before increasing antidepressant dosage, try drinking more water. Aim for half your body weight in ounces daily, not exceeding 120 ounces for larger bodies.

  3. Follow Your Own Path: Identify with yourself – your creativity, needs, and desires. Taking action promotes motivation and inspiration. Express what's inside, whether through art, journaling, or hands-on activities. Give yourself time for independent thoughts and creation

  4. Avoid 'Always On' Mode: Practice silence, allowing your brain to process experiences into learning. Journaling, meditation, or simply sitting in quiet for five minutes helps. Notice your surroundings without judgment and just breathe.

  5. Control Your Breath: Your nervous system influences stress response. Change your breath to change stress response immediately. Box breathing, with equal sides representing 4 seconds each, regulates the nervous system. Inhale for 4 seconds, hold for 4 seconds, exhale for 4 seconds, hold again for 4 seconds, and repeat for 5 minutes daily.

  6. Prioritize Mental Well-being: Many health issues lead to mental distress. Don't endure unnecessary ailments. Partner with a provider who listens and has tools for true wellness, inside and out.

At IVY Integrative, you can work with one practitioner or build your own team of holistic practitioners! Reach your optimum health in-person or online. Check out our Get Started page to learn how to work with us!



This information is generalized and intended for educational purposes only. Due to potential individual contraindications, please see your primary care provider before implementing any strategies in these posts.



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