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In the book Guess My Age If You Can by Dr. Olivier Courtin-Clarins, the importance of cultivating optimism and generating “happy hormones” such as serotonin, endorphins, oxytocin, and dopamine is emphasized as key to a healthier life. These hormones can improve sleep and reduce stress, helping individuals to age well and maintain a better quality of life as they get older. Positive emotions create a “virtuous circle” that stimulates the body’s ability to repair itself, relax, and generate happy-making hormones, leading to overall wellbeing.

Courtin-Clarins and other specialists, such as Florence Servan-Schreiber, author of Three Buzzes a Day: How to Activate Your Optimism to Be Happier, suggest simple self-care practices as effective ways to encourage a dopamine boost. These practices include cooking, journaling, taking a bath, or giving someone you love a hug. Servan-Schreiber’s “three buzzes” method involves writing down three positive things from the day before bed, which can change one’s perspective and stimulate the secretion of feel-good hormones.

In an interview with Catherine Testa, founder of L’, Courtin-Clarins discusses how personality traits are not solely biologically determined, and that optimism can be cultivated. He emphasizes the importance of work and habits in stimulating feel-good hormones and increasing happiness. Testa suggests that individuals can take measures to be optimistic, drawing on their own resources and surrounding themselves with positive influences to enhance their wellbeing.

Laughter is noted as a foolproof way to boost dopamine levels and promote happiness. Psychologist Lourdes Ramón explains that when the insula part of the brain is activated through seeing someone smile or smiling oneself, dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin are released, signaling happiness and contributing to an improved mood. The act of smiling and laughing creates a self-fulfilling prophecy, leading to an increased sense of happiness and overall wellbeing.

Taking steps to cultivate optimism from the moment one wakes up can lead to a healthier and happier life. By focusing on generating happy hormones through positive emotions and self-care practices, individuals can improve sleep, reduce stress, and age well. Surrounding oneself with positive influences and engaging in habits that promote optimism can further enhance happiness and overall wellbeing. Laughing and smiling are simple yet effective ways to boost dopamine levels and trigger feelings of happiness, contributing to a more positive outlook on life. Cultivating optimism through these practices can lead to a more fulfilling and enriched quality of life as individuals grow older.

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