Novelty, Dopamine, Follow-through and Persistence

I have a keen interest in continuous learning, personal growth and development. I embrace the growth mindset and acknowledge that we can be, learn and have everything we set our mind to.

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I recently came across an article about two things that make Bill Gates happy, one of them in his own words being:

“following through on commitments to yourself like doing more exercise also improves your happiness.”

Follow-through on HARD things, helps us develop our persistence. Just like a muscle, as we train ourselves to follow-through on hard things, we develop our GRIT (passion + persistence). It enables us to go DEEP and be better at things we already know/ do!

It is incredibly fun to explore new interests, as it triggers the dopamine in our brains which plays a key role in the reward and reinforcement cycle. Exploring new interests is not just fun and personally gratifying, but also has increased effects on a sense of happyness and personal well being.

Who doesn’t like the smell of baking your very own first batch of cookies, the exploratory paths of a new hiking trail, the rhythm from your first piano class or the interesting concepts when setting to learn a new programming language like Python? 🙂

Man is a creature of interests and novelty keeps the freshness alive and stimulates us in unprecedented ways, expanding our cognitive horizons and helping us learn and develop relevant + new skills.

Life is all about trying to strike the perfect balance – Depth + Novelty

– Himali

  • Something that I have personally put to practice is picking 2 areas in my personal life for depth and novelty each i.e. two areas in which I want to deepen and sharpen my existing abilities (one of them being blogging and writing) and two areas where I want to experiment and learn.

  • Next, integrating lessons from Stephen Covey, I have made a personal planner in which I set apart daily/ weekly/ monthly time + goals for these endeavors and schedule them on my calendar.

Scheduling helps me with prioritization and having clear set up goals (for instance at least 5 blog posts a month) enables me to monitor and track my progress and realign my schedule to set up additional time if needed. 

What are your 1) Novelty and 2) Follow-through activities? What kind of activities bring to you a sense of achievement and happyness? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

25 thoughts on “Novelty, Dopamine, Follow-through and Persistence

  1. Superb article !
    This is truly inspirational attitude for others.
    If you have desire to acquire knowledge your mind will definitely help you.
    Learning and acquiring knowledge has no boundary, whether it is for pecuniary or non-pecuniary gain.
    You have been in fact inspirational to me including others.
    Keep it up and all the best

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “Life is all about trying to strike the perfect balance – Depth + Novelty”

    SMiLes my FRiEnD; let’s not forget Oxytocin; the Social Bonding Neurohormone; And Yes,
    Yes, Serotonin The Self-Esteem and Trust Neurochemical; that by the way; both of these
    ‘Brain and Body Juices’ Reduces Anxiety and Fear; And Norepinephrine, the Neurohormone
    That Puts us into Action During Periods of Emergency in Fight or Flight Response in life at
    Base Human Survival for Life. There are so many others that additionally surround Androgens
    And Estrogens but this isn’t a College Class, so i’ll keep it at the basics of:

    Moving: Burns off Stress Neurohormones released during Stress that for most people
    is a constant General Anxiety of Life; so Important and so Creative too in connecting
    And Co-Creating when done as an Ever increasing Complex Activity of Dance
    in connecting with other people; Truly, a Staple of Life that is Lost ancestrally
    now for overall Human Well Being; And of Course Moving is what all of
    existence does; Stop Moving and Planets/Stars will fall from the Sky;
    yes, including Us in Life. A greatest Modern Human ‘Retardation’
    is the Loss of Dance that completes Connecting and
    Co-Creating too; it’s seen as a mating activity;
    instead of a Way of life; this is very very sad, overall.
    People replace this with all kinds of Substance/Behavioral Abuses to to fill the void
    of what most often comes in falling below; a loss of Connecting and putting Humanity first.

    You Exercise Regularly; you do more than what many people
    do your age to achieve this necessity of moving for well being;
    hehe; i also suggest Dance; no real surprise from my end at least; hAha.

    Connecting: Connecting; oh my God yes; did you know that about 25 Percent
    of Millennials have no acquaintances in Flesh and Blood Life; and another close
    to 25 Percent have no close Friends; And 50 percent of Adults in America haven’t
    made a new Close Flesh Friend in 5 Years; what does this equal to; so much substance abuse;
    now, both addictive and prescriptive; and Behavioral too to cure what is missing; the Social Bonding Neurohormone that makes the Warm and Fuzzies, Oxytocin; the i will be there for You Neurohormone now
    that makes any Social Animal what they are as evolved to be as Creatures in Well Being when successful.

    i don’t see this as a problem for you at all; lots of people would love you to be their close friend.

    Co-Creating: Yes, this is a Huge Challenge ‘in this modern world’; we get stuck in our routines
    of Work; we get stuck on Facebook just looking at what other folks have done and at most
    Sharing what someone else has done; and never really producing anything of Creativity
    that expands our Human Potentials in actually arriving at the reality of Original
    Creativity that has never been done before; this is particularly difficult in
    finding People who may have similar interests when the creativity becomes
    truly original; much Perseverance is required; it often becomes a lone activity
    of Creativity; and that is what makes Moving and Connecting so important for Self-Esteem,
    Trust, and Human Connection of Warm and Fuzzies; that is why i put people first in front of all
    other Endeavors in consideration that i am a Social Animal and i must balance Moving; and
    Connecting; With Creativity too; at best in acts of Co-Creativity; i’ve learned to do it best this way.

    This is what you are doing here; but remember Dopamine is only one part of the Human
    Decoding Happiness Project for it is true; at the end of Life most folks regret they did not do
    enough Connecting; Deep connecting with other Human Beings; That they did not bring
    enough Love to the eyes of other Human Beings For they Just got too busy to keep it at
    the top of their to do list.

    Okay; that’s my opinion.

    My Goal in life was to Graduate From College; Get a Job; Make other Folks Happy;
    Keep exercising; Become Financially Independent; and eventually become free to focus
    more on making other Folks Happy; yes, to have the Hours to become Creative again too;

    It’s Hard to do all this; the place i failed the most was to keep meaningful connections
    to those who i held the closest to my Heart. i actually lost all the warm and fuzzies;
    the Oxytocin went away; i kept moving but my Heart became FroZen; and i truly became
    a slave to Work and the Dollar Bill. i was surviving; but for decades i was not thriving.
    i had no idea that the loss of oxytocin was a major factor in my Chronic Anxiety. They
    don’t teach you that at School. They also don’t teach you how to Balance Your Mind
    and Body in Meditation in Regulating Emotions and Integrating Senses that are additionally
    Integral to Focus and Short Term Working Memory in Cognitive Executive Functioning; either
    Still or Moving Meditation; A Free Dance Is Best; sadly mostly just seen now as what Young Folks do.
    Honestly, You Don’t have to ‘Dance With The Stars’ as An Adult to Actually Become a Moving Human Star
    oF LiGHT complete..:)

    i learned those lessons the hard way; as the stress literally almost killed me. You
    are way ahead of me for where i was at your age now; and that’s for sure.

    i became financially independent by age 47; but honestly it wasn’t worth it; not then at
    least, for the Price of my Well-Being, i paid; Literally 66 months in Hell as a Shut-in in my Home
    recovering from 19 mostly stress related disorders; to my Credit Substance Abuse was never a problem.
    It’s a real Epidemic in the United States for People who are so lost from the Overall Human Condition in Balance. Smiles; i just got to the age of Withdrawing Money from my 401K, today! ha! don’t need the Money;
    i really pinched the Pennies at Work and Sacrificed to make that Lump Sum Possible; perhaps another
    rainy day will come; if not for me in my lifetime; perhaps Katrina too; (Job well done) overall, still for Love.

    F the Goals; F the Strategy became my Mantra after i saw all that buried.

    In the Moment i live now in the Flow of continuous increasing complexity in a Dance and
    Song of Life is what i do now; i count the Milestones and the Featnotes as they come;
    the Latest; Writing 5 MiLLioN Words in this MacroVerse i am Writing of Free Verse Poetry
    now in 42 Months; i did not set out to do that; it came as a result of living 100 percent in
    the Excellence of the Moment of now making every Word and Step a Holy and Sacred
    Endeavor of Dance And Song; Money is no issue at all; truly this Frees me in a life of
    no Deadlines of Slave to no one else but what i choose to do with my Will now.

    And With 75 Months Additionally and 7.5 MiLLioN Words of ‘SonG oF mY SoUL’ the
    Longest Long Form Poem in the History of Humankind; 11,360 Miles of Public Dance
    Now almost Half the Distance Around the Globe at the Equator in the same 75 Months;
    Keeping in mind that i started with no Real Strategy or Goal; Even Named Legend
    by the Metro Audience at Hand Just a year into the Dance; All i did was give all
    my focus to each word and every step as both became a Never Ending
    Story of Holy and Sacred Dance And Song Inherently Full of
    Meaning and Purpose for the reality of bringing Just
    one smile to anyone at all now; smiles;
    People Literally come up to me i’ve
    never seen before and hug me;
    it sort of answers the next question
    for my Fame is No Fortune but a smile.

    What is my Greatest Achievement now?

    Little Children Roll Down Their Windows in their Parent’s Car and Wave
    Good Bye to me When Katrina and i are Walking Back to my Car; Little Children
    i’ve never seen before; Simply because they know when they see a Human who is truly free in dance.

    My Greatest Achievement is what i give; a smile;

    As Far as i’m concerned the rest of it can go to Hell;

    Not Worried About any Copyrights for there is NO Copyrighting Love.

    i put people first now; that was the Major Failure in Decades of my life.

    It Really hit home hard when i heard the silence after my Mother’s Last Breath.

    All that Matters in the End is the Love You Give; that last Breath is easy if you give enough.

    That Last Breath Never Ends as Long as that Love Was Received and Sincerely Felt by Others.

    i believe that Most Humans eventually come to this realization; better of course spent than The Last Breath.

    i faced that Last Breath when i was severely ill too; that taught me all i needed to know about life that mattered too. It is the People ln our Life who must come first or we do not truly live at all other than for selfish gain.

    This Practice of Life Never ends for me; i still stand to Lose that Potential, if i do not keep that reality first in
    Life.

    Thank You, For Your Post that inspired ALL these words; if it is too much please feel free to delete it for it
    is what we give that counts; short or long; for if what we give is not accepted one place there is always the next place to go; hehe; to copy and paste; to be clear i don’t think you will; i just say that out of respect of not flooding someone else’s home like the TSuNaMi i’ve come to be of Words; A Silent Dance is so much easier
    for most people to Swallow of the Pill of me; hopefully a Sugar one my FRiEnD; i try, but yes; i”m only Human;
    even
    ‘Stars’
    Eventually fall; ‘Planets’ too.
    Humans are Different; THeiR Love may/WILL LiVE oN..:)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello, Fred! Thank you for stopping by and your elaborate reply to my post – your reply is a post in itself! 🙂 I loved how you got the other important brain hormones I missed out.

      Well, I wasn’t making a comprehensive list. I was just trying to understand the balance between doing new things and going deep in existing endeavors. But I loved how you explain the importance of social connections. Relationships are the key to human happiness, undoubtedly. Also exercise and co-creating. It is when we stretch ourselves physically to strengthen our muscles and will power and also our imagination in creativity, that we truly find an expression of ourselves.

      Thank you again for sharing your journey and your story!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Smiles; haha; the size of my (Blog) Posts on other sites,
        eliminates any necessity of waiting for my Blog to Load.

        Emotional/Physical Intelligences; Integral Hand-in-Hand; are what is missing most in the World Today.

        i attempt to spread a bit wherever i go; short and long; the Dance is easier to understand for most folks.

        Honestly; most folks have ZERO CLUE about any of this; and they wouldn’t need any of the information if they just Dance and Sing their Life together; what Humans always do before Clothing their Freedom in all of what Cultures Hide today; namely their Humanity; For What of Human that ‘Book Learning’ still fails to replace; so, i dance; ‘literally’, the Oldest way of Human Reciprocal Social Communication and around 60 to 90 Percent of what Humans are still evolved to do, Non-Verbal Communication, almost totally missed in Text and Voice Communication.

        Ha! making Words Dance, organic; in text; that’s a challenge i’m still practicing that never ends…

        Anyway; Thank You; ALL my Pleasure.

        Like

  3. Sounds like a good plan. Very well articulated with clear vision and determination to put in practice.
    I am impressed at the vision and wisdom at this young age.
    Actually your post has prompted me to think on my novelty and follow through activities.
    One is to go for six packs.
    The second is to look for acting roles in movies.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. 1/ Listening to my heart dear Himali, its song speaks but the truth.
    2/ Mind you, I’m sure there are earplugs somewhere, I’ve tripped and stumbled many times. But they too are given with much love so we understand both sides and ‘know’ this life’s balance ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s such an amazing idea and concept channeling energy and passion, Himali. The schedule works best when I losing the writing mojo so are the ideas on 2 areas for depth in personal growth, follow-through, activities ushering in happiness.

    Liked by 1 person

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