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Dopamine Detox

David Sherry
2 min read
Dopamine Detox

This past weekend I did a Dopamine Detox. This basically means dialing down things that spike dopamine or keep you distracted.

They are the guilty pleasures. And, as they say, it’s not the anger that gets you, but the desire.

So I tried my best to cut out the majors… which for me is Twitter, Netflix, Dark Chocolate, and little email/feed refreshing.

I caved on audio books and put physical books in the category of A OK.

Along with this, I made a list of what I determine to be “quality” uses of time. This included being back at the gym, hiking, heading to the beach, reading, journaling, etc.

I do these things already, but I do them with a type of filter – one that’s created by being tethered to my phone. So this weekend I wanted to remove that filter.

Constantly having headphones in is like always having an on-going voice in your head.

You’re never truly there because you’ve got static blocking out your senses and experience.

And so you don’t fully get the quality of being alive.

It makes us all ADD. Being ADD is not the inability to focus, this is a misnomer. Being ADD is getting so focused on a particular thing that you miss out on the details of all of the other things around you.

You become forgetful - not because of your memory - but because of your inability to allow your focus to be more global and remember broader details that are all worth remembering.

So, to give myself more of an ample awareness, to create more broad focus rather than narrow, I took a bit of a pause.

I won’t be quitting, just pausing...

and watching what emerges from the blank space. Like music, you need a bit of space for everything to breathe and to have a creative idea for the next note.

Already I feel like I have a bit more of intention back.

True to my ADD nature, it was easy to fill in those spaces – but the activities I chose were different. And that had an immediate effect on the quality of my day.

Like Kevin Kelly said, I take a break “not because Twitter is so bad, but because it’s SO GOOD…”

And too much of a good thing blurs out everything around it.