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How To Create Sustainable Joy This Holiday Season

Dr Daniel Amen and Tana Amen BSN RN On The Brain Warrior's Way Podcast

We all want to feel good. But all too often we engage in activities that provide short-term gratification but ultimately have a negative effect by wearing our pleasure centers out. In the second installment of the “Success Starts Here” series, Dr. Daniel Amen and Tana Amen share philosophies and techniques to finding your own unique purpose, and then using it to bring meaning and joy that lasts a lifetime.

 

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Dr. Daniel Amen: Welcome to the Brain Warrior's Way podcast. I'm Dr. Daniel Amen.

Tana Amen: And I'm Tana Amen. Here, we teach you how to win the fight for your brain to defeat anxiety, depression, memory loss, ADHD, and addictions.

Dr. Daniel Amen: The Brain Warrior's Way podcast is brought to you by Amen Clinics, where we've transformed lives for three decades, using brain SPECT imaging to better target treatment, and natural ways to heal the brain. For more information, visit amenclinics.com.

Tana Amen: The Brain Warrior's Way podcast is also brought to you by BrainMD, where we produce the highest quality nutraceutical products to support the health of your brain and body. For more information, visit brainmdhealth.com. Welcome to the Brain Warrior's Way podcast.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Welcome back to Success Starts Here, our series on how to get the most out of your brain and your life, and this session is called Create Sustainable Joy: Protect Your Brain's Pleasure Centers to Live with Passion and Purpose and Avoid Addictions and Depression.

Tana Amen: What I like about this title is that it's true. You can create joy. A lot of people keep waiting to feel joy. They keep waiting for something to happen so that they will feel happiness or they will feel joy. And what most people don't realize is that because of the way you are wired, you can actually do things to help create that joy. So it puts you ... It's an empowering thought.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Or you can deaden your pleasure centers and feel sad, and apathy.

Tana Amen: So understanding how joy is actually created in your body from a biological, physiological standpoint's really important.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Well, and there are two neurotransmitters that we want you to understand, dopamine and serotonin.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So dopamine works in what is really called the pleasure motivation circuit in the brain, and they're structures called the basal ganglia, nucleus accumbens. I really think of them as little pleasure buttons in the brain, that you push on them and you feel happy. But if you push on them too much or too hard, you wear them out and then it requires more and more. In order to feel anything at all.

Tana Amen: So people who like to go faster and faster. Or they become addicted to pornography. Or they become addicted to drugs. The more you do, it's like, "I need more to get that feeling." You're wearing out those pleasure centers right?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Right. But first, let's start. Is purpose good for your brain? Are people who are purposeful, I think you're a purposeful person. Is that good for your brain? Well the studies actually say, "You bet." Better mental health. Less depression. Greater happiness. More satisfaction. Personal growth. Self acceptance. Better sleep and you live longer.

Tana Amen: Don't you live 11 years longer?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Significantly longer. Over time, they have a reduced incidence of Alzheimer's disease. They have less mild cognitive impairment. They have a slower rate of cognitive decline in old age. We should be living a very long time. Because we spend our lives purposeful.

Tana Amen: Right. Well and purpose-

Dr. Daniel Amen: And I think the Brain Warrior's Way was just our statement in the sand. It's war and we're going to lead you to a better life.

Tana Amen: Well and purpose is double-edged. So if you think about purpose, it's like if I have purpose I'm going to live longer just because I'm doing something purposeful. But the flip side of that is that when you have a strong purpose, you tend to make better decisions.

For example, I have this thought in my head that I really want to be here for my daughter. That's a major part of my purpose. Whether it's because of the work we're doing or because of my daughter, or whatever it is, that drive is very, very strong. That keeps me making better decisions. Because if I make bad decisions, I won't be here for her.

Dr. Daniel Amen: You won't get what you want.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: And that's very important. If you stay with us, we're actually going to talk to you about how to create purpose in your own life.

Tana Amen: But having that purpose is in important.

Dr. Daniel Amen: In a very short period of time.

Tana Amen: But I see a lot of, I've seen this a lot where even some of the moms will go out at lunch time and they love their kids. I know they love their kids. They're taking good care of their kids. But they'll drink at lunch and then get in their cars and drive. And I'm like ... See to me, those are connected. Does that make sense?

Dr. Daniel Amen: You bet.

Tana Amen: I would be afraid to do that. I would not do that because I would be afraid of the consequences and not being there for my child.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Forethought. That's frontal lobes. We're going to talk about them next. How do you know if you have purpose in your life? Answer these five questions:

1. I feel good when I think of what I've done in the past and what I hope to do in the future.

2. I have a sense of direction and purpose in life.

3. I enjoy making plans for the future and working them to a reality.

4. I'm an active person in carrying out plans I set for myself.

5. Some people wander aimlessly through life. But I am not one of them.

Tana Amen: I like this. But I'm going to push back on number one. So what I've done in the past and what I hope to do in the future, many people have really hard past. They've either made bad decisions or they've been a victim of something in the past. That does not mean that you cannot shift that into being very, using it as fuel for purpose in the future. Certainly I know a lot of people that almost the more painful their stories are, and we've written a lot about them, the more driven they are to be purposeful.

Dr. Daniel Amen: If I think about it, I was beaten up a lot as a little kid and anxious, smaller than everyone else. I can focus on that and you grew up in a lot of chaos. You can think about that and be really upset. Or you can think of the amazing times you had. And you had amazing times with your mom and with your grandmother. Certainly, I got to hang out with my grandfather who made fudge. That was awesome. Where you bring your attention, often determines how you feel. We're going to talk about that in mastering your mind.

Tana Amen: And the other thing is, if you do have something in your past, an unresolved trauma or you were a victim of something, or you made bad decisions. You were the person making bad decisions. Do something empowering to pull yourself out of that. I think about it as an unresourceful state. That is going to drag you down. That is not going to give you purpose, thinking about that and dwelling on those awful things in the past.

For me, I love doing what we do. I practice karate because as somebody who grew up in that chaotic environment, there were some physical things that had happened. I like feeling empowered. Those things take me out of that. They put me in a more resourceful state, almost instantly. I think being proactive is really important.

Dr. Daniel Amen: In an upcoming lesson, we're going to talk about embracing change and learning from the failures. So if you had a learning mindset, then they become incredibly important to you.

I want to talk a little bit about the addiction cycle. That's where people engage in actions that increase dopamine. We talked about the two neurotransmitters. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that increases the feeling of pleasure. It works in the pleasure centers. It increases focus and motivation.

When it's too low, people feel sad. They feel unmotivated, hopeless, helpless, worthless. When it's too high, they feel anxious, agitated, can be aggressive, confused, even psychotic sometimes.

Serotonin, on the other side, they balance each other dopamine and serotonin. Serotonin, when it's healthy, it helps you feel happy and optimistic. It helps you sleep. When it's too low, people get depressed, anxious, obsessive. And when it's too high, they feel apathetic and passive.

These two counterbalance each other. Most addictive drugs are not boosting serotonin, although ecstasy does that. But most of them boost dopamine. So you feel high. You feel pleasure. You feel awesome.

Tana Amen: So like methamphetamines, crystal, cocaine.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Nicotine, caffeine, methamphetamines, cocaine and so on.

Tana Amen: And so the dopamine, that gives you drive. And the serotonin is like, "Oh, don't worry. Be happy." Like chill?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Correct. So the addiction cycle, is you engage in actions that increase dopamine. So you mentioned pornography. You also mentioned methamphetamines. You mentioned cocaine. The more you do it, the more you press on your pleasure centers-

Tana Amen: It's the same part of the brain right? For the drugs versus the pornography.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Well and love, new love presses on that too. That's why I tell people don't get married in eight days after you've met someone. Let the cocaine effect wear off. The more you engage in a behavior that dumps dopamine, cocaine, for example dumps dopamine into your brain. It begins to wear those pleasure centers out. They get what we call tolerant. So it actually takes more and more cocaine, pornography, new love, in order to feel normal. That's the important thing, it takes more and more of that behavior to feel-

Tana Amen: Which is why you see them going to dark places.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Normal. Which is why they end up getting strung out or addicted.

Tana Amen: Or on TV on the news. What's going on lately?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Or behavior that seems just crazy.

Tana Amen: What about dare devils, same thing? Fast cars, jumping out of planes?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Same thing. They're looking for that. They're looking to turn their brains on. They get that pleasure rush in their brains. So you engage in the behavior. You feel high. When dopamine wears off ... I really want people to go for the dopamine drip.

Tana Amen: Ah, we do that in the hospital all the time.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Rather than the dopamine rush or the dopamine dump, you want to go for the dopamine drip. So living with purpose is sort of a dopamine drip. We get a lot of great stories from people who follow our work. That's sort of like a dopamine rush. But you want a consistent, low-level, positive feeling, in order to keep those parts of your brain healthy.

So when dopamine wears off from, you have a dopamine squirt or a dopamine splash. We'll have to find the right word for this. It wears off. So you feel flat, sad, depressed. And so you reengage in the dopamine behavior, like gambling. Even if it's bad for you. Even if you've had negative societal consequences. Your wife has left you. You've been arrested. You have to file for bankruptcy. Shopping for some people. It's like, "Oh, I found that thing." Not you. Obviously not you.

Tana Amen: Shoot me now.

Dr. Daniel Amen: And so with intense stimulation, the pleasure centers need more and more excitement in order to feel anything at all. We actually have two conditions that you wear out these pleasure center quickly. One is ADD, because with ADD you actually have low dopamine levels in the brain. So people, unless they get treated, and the treatment we use, is dopamine enhancing supplements or dopamine enhancing medications, they tend to be excitement-seeking, conflict-driven. They tend to drive fast. They tend to use stimulants like coffee or cigarettes.

Tana Amen: Or do the kind of things that I workout like I do and go practice karate because I like dopamine.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Yeah. Well, I mean we've talked before. You have ADD.

Tana Amen: But I'm not one of those crazy. 'Cause I'm too anxious.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Yeah, you have the anxious type of ADD. As we've talked before, there's seven different types. But the classic type, they're just-

Tana Amen: The thing I like about exercise is it actually increases all of the good neurotransmitters and hormones. It increases serotonin, dopamine and the endorphins. So you feel balanced. You feel good. That's why people always say, "Oh, I feel so good when I exercise."

Dr. Daniel Amen: The other condition we should talk about for just a minute is Parkinson's disease. 'Cause in Parkinson's disease, the dopamine neurons start to die, especially in an area of the brain called the substantia nigra.

I have this one patient, who was the father of one of my college friends. Just the nicest religious man, calm, sweet, moral. When he got Parkinson's-like syndrome, he started to fall in love with Jerry Springer and Dr. Phil. He just waited for their shows to come on. I think it's like why? He needed that dopamine splash in order to feel normal. Families having sex with each other.

Tana Amen: I could have invited him over for Thanksgiving. He would have gotten the same thing.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Jerry Springer had nothing on your family. That's true. But why scary movies?

Tana Amen: I don't know. Someone please tell me. I got drug to these horror movies when I was nine years old.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So is Saw, one, two, three, four, five, six and 3D. Are they dopamine drips? Or are they dopamine dumps?

Tana Amen: They just scare the hell out of me. [crosstalk 00:15:03] that's all I know is I want to run.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Well what do you think they're doing inside someone's brain?

Tana Amen: Well, it's dopamine, obviously. Dumping dopamine.

Dr. Daniel Amen: And it's not a drip.

Tana Amen: But I don't understand-

Dr. Daniel Amen: Right, I mean going to a spectacular movie. We just watched Good Will Hunting. Fabulous movie.

Tana Amen: Okay, and I admit. I do like movies like Taken. 'Cause I love justice.

Dr. Daniel Amen: And that's a dopamine dump sort of movie.

Tana Amen: But it's a different kind of dopamine dump.

Dr. Daniel Amen: But it's your dopamine dump.

Tana Amen: My dopamine dump. Yes. I want justice in mine.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Or some of the Fast and Furious movies you love.

Tana Amen: Love those, yes.

Dr. Daniel Amen: How to protect your pleasure centers to feel lifelong joy. I'm going to give you some principles. You have to limit the use of constantly stimulating devices and activities, such as smart phones, gaming, shopping, pornography, scary movies and high risk activities.

Tana Amen: So we should probably not gloss over that too much. We gotta give them something to do instead.

Dr. Daniel Amen: It's coming.

Tana Amen: Okay. Just making sure.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Stay with me. Engage in regular exercise.

Tana Amen: Yes.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Especially something you love that does not endanger your brain. Such as karate but without [crosstalk 00:16:21]

Tana Amen: I gotta tell you, there's nothing that feels better than going and just beating the hell out of bags. It's just fun. It just feels good. It's like therapy.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So karate, dancing, swimming, tennis, table tennis, meditation protects your brain, while boosts activity in your pleasure centers. You want to make time to laugh. Humor enhances the pleasure centers and doesn't wear them out.

Connect meaningful activities and pleasures, such as volunteering for activities you love. For example, I love table tennis and enjoy keeping score for others during tournaments. I'm doing something purposeful, that I love. Start every day by thinking of three things that you're grateful for. Small dopamine drip.

Tana Amen: See, I actually think that really works. It sounds so trivial. It sounds so minor. And it's not. It actually really works. You do that consistently for a week, it will, I promise you, you'll start to feel better.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Think of one person you appreciate every day. Another small dopamine drip.

Tana Amen: I love that.

Dr. Daniel Amen: And then reach out to them and tell the person you appreciate them with a text or an email. So you're building a bridge of gratitude.

Tana Amen: I love that.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So you just did a little dopamine drip in their brain.

Tana Amen: Yes.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Seek pleasure in the little things in life, such as a walk with a friend. Holding hands with your spouse. A great meal. Or a meaningful church service. So positive things that activate dopamine. Meaning and purpose, lasting love, volunteering, relationships, new learning, traveling to places where they speak English and [crosstalk 00:18:07]

Tana Amen: Seriously, we're not having therapy on their right now. He does not want to go vacation anywhere out of the US anymore. He's just done.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Did you see the volcano in Bali? You wanted to go to Bali.

Tana Amen: Okay. I don't want to hear it. I really don't want to hear it.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Pumpkin seeds increase dopamine, as does green tea. Gratitude, appreciation. Winning by striving to be your best. Losing when it motivates you to practice and be better. And digital discipline.

Potentially negative things that activate dopamine, jumping out of airplanes, repeatedly falling in love. High-risk sports like helicopter skiing, marital affairs. People do that as a way to stimulate their brains.

Tana Amen: That sounds dangerous, actually.

Dr. Daniel Amen: If they were married to you, it's absolutely dangerous. Video games, pornography, cocaine, methamphetamines, alcohol, fame. The prayer for some of the young celebrities I see is Dear God, please don't let me be famous before my frontal lobes are developed.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Winning by hurting people. That activates dopamine in a bad way.

Tana Amen: What?

Dr. Daniel Amen: Losing when it causes pain. Undisciplined digital behavior. Scary movies and gossip.

Tana Amen: I don't understand the winning by hurting other people. How does that stimulate dopamine?

Dr. Daniel Amen: It's the Machiavellian kind of winning.

Tana Amen: Oh.

Dr. Daniel Amen: I love torturing you.

Tana Amen: I don't understand that. That sounds terrible.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Well think of S&M.

Tana Amen: But that sounds terrible, doesn't sound like a good thing.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Well but, there are people whose pleasure centers have been worn out. Or they get pleasure by hurting people. It's not that uncommon.

Tana Amen: See, that's why I like movies like Taken and Law Abiding Citizen. That's why I like those movies.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Viktor Frankl.

Tana Amen: I love that book.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Believed that there were three ways to create meaning and purpose.

Tana Amen: So tell them the name of the book, 'cause it's a great book.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Man's Search for Meaning.

Tana Amen: One of the best books.

Dr. Daniel Amen: He's a psychiatrist. So you don't have to hate all of us.

Tana Amen: No, I loved his book.

Dr. Daniel Amen: He's had three ways to create meaning, purposeful work, or being productive. Asking questions, such as, "Why is the world a better place because I am here?" "What am I contributing?" Love. Loving the people who are central to your life is purposeful. I have a cool story coming up. Courage in the face of difficulty shouldering whatever difficult fate we have, and helping others shoulder theirs.

In the face of difficulty, Frankl. Said, "Everything can be taken from a man but one thing. The last of human freedoms, to choose one's attitude in any given circumstances. To choose one own's way." He was a Nazi concentration camp survivor.

Tana Amen: His story is horrifying. But it is great.

Dr. Daniel Amen: He encouraged his patients to see meaning in life's moments and to direct their focus away from painful moments to ones that were more appealing. "Love," He says, "Is the ultimate and highest goal man can aspire to." He also said people find meaning in creative values. So for me, and for you too, it's writing. Creating this podcast or courses.

Tana Amen: Well and even things like, helping Chloe our daughter, helping her when she's really struggling with something. That brings me joy, being able to be able to do that is wonderful.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Experiential values, mountain climbing, sports, traveling, going out to dinner. Attitudinal values, looking for meaning in situations, even ones that appear meaningless.

There's a story about Frankl treating an older man who could not stop grieving the loss of his wife. I'll be like that. He asked the man, "What would have happened if you had died first and your wife would have had to survive you?"

Tana Amen: Oh God.

Dr. Daniel Amen: "Oh," The man replied, "For her this would have been terrible. How she would have suffered." Frankl said, "See, such a suffering has been spared her. And it is you who has spared her this suffering."

Tana Amen: That's a great way to flip that.

Dr. Daniel Amen: "Now you have to pay for it by surviving her and mourning her." The man said no word. But shook Frankl's hand and left his office. Frankl believed we can find meaning in difficult situations. It's like, why for years were people-

Tana Amen: That was very powerful. I want to stop for a minute and think about that. If you just think about that for a second. I know so many parents. They just have this terrible fear of something happening to their child. I can't think of anything worse. But if I were to stop and think about my child having to raise herself. There's a lot of ways to spin it. It's-

Dr. Daniel Amen: It's always how you take things.

Tana Amen: Right. It's the part you focus on.

Dr. Daniel Amen: I always write this equation on my board for my patients, A+B=C. A, is what happens to you in life. B, is your interpretation of what happens to you in life. And C, is how you act. And C, actually has nothing to do with A. It's the B stuff. It's how you interpret what happens to you.

Tana Amen: It's very powerful.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So how can you know your purpose in five minutes? There's this great Ted talk by Adam Leipzig. It has 10 million views. He's a very successful guy who went to his 25th college reunion at Yale. And he said, he made an astounding discovery. 80% of his privileged, well-off, powerful friends were unhappy with their lives. Despite being on their second spouse, and their second house.

Tana Amen: Isn't that crazy?

Dr. Daniel Amen: The difference between them and the 20% who were happy, was knowing their purpose. Which makes sense, given the research we've discussed. To know your purpose, Leipzig said, "You have to know the answer to five simple questions." Do it with me.

Tana Amen: Okay.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Question number 1. What is your name?

Tana Amen: Tana.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Question number 2. What do you love to do? For example, writing, cooking, designing, speaking, parenting, teaching, crunching numbers. What do you love to do?

Tana Amen: Parenting. I love being a wife. I love to write books. And I love to teach people. And I love karate.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Question 3. Who do you do it for?

Tana Amen: That's a crazy question. Because I not only do it for the people that I'm trying to help. I do it for you. I do it for Chloe. I do it for our community. But quite frankly, I do it because it feels good. So I do it for both.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Okay. So for me. For Chloe. For your community. What do we need from you?

Tana Amen: I would say for me to be healthy and in best time. And to be my best person. To be my best self. To be wise. Not making bad decisions. That's what I would say.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So we need consistency, love and information.

Tana Amen: Love and good decision-making. Which is equals consistency.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Listening.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: How do these people change as a result of what you do?

Tana Amen: With my daughter, I think that's fairly an easy one. When you spend time with your kids, and I'm watching her turn into this amazing young woman. She's just amazing. She's just far beyond what I ever imagined being at her age. So I'm seeing it happen before my eyes. I see our patients get well. Lose 100 pounds, some of them.

Dr. Daniel Amen: [crosstalk 00:26:04] The story of Denny recently.

Tana Amen: Right. The veteran that we brought in. But I mean they lose weight. They feel better. They have purpose. They have passion. And my marriage.

Dr. Daniel Amen: So notice, three out of these five questions, actually have nothing to do with you but they're outward, basic.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Isn't that cool?

Tana Amen: I love that.

Dr. Daniel Amen: For mine, my name is Daniel. I love optimizing people's brains and inspiring them to take care of it. I love doing it within the context of our team. We do it for our families, those who come to our clinics, read our books, watch our shows. The people we touch want to suffer less, to feel better, to be sharper. Greater control over their lives. They want better brains and better lives.

As a result of what we do, people change by having better brains and better lives, they suffer less, become happier and healthier. And they pass it on. So, only two of the five questions are about me. Three are about others.

Tana Amen: Right.

Dr. Daniel Amen: The happiest people Leipzig[inaudible 00:27:05] knows and that I know and that you know, are outward facing, focusing more on the people they serve, than on themselves.

Tana Amen: Especially women. I don't know, never been a man. But women can very quickly, just speaking from a female perspective and knowing my friends and myself, when you always even tell me, I'm dangerous without a project. It's true.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Yes, you are.

Tana Amen: I'm dangerous without a purpose. I'm dangerous without something that I'm doing that's meaningful. Because we can get caught up in the craziest things in our head. Even the little stuff. I know I mope around and I pout and I'm like, "My life has no meaning." As soon as we finish a book.

But I can also then start to hyper focus on my own personal flaws. I know women are famous for that. They notice the lines on their face. They notice their thighs. They notice every tiny thing.

When you are not focusing on helping other people or doing something bigger than yourself in the world, it's very quick. It happens very fast insidiously, just like you begin to focus on things that bring you down.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Let me read this paragraph. I'm working on it in the book. Leipzig closes his talk by teaching us a powerful technique. He says, "When you're at a gathering and someone asks you, 'What do you do?' Answer them by telling them the answer to question number five.

In my example, when people ask me what I do, I might say, 'As a result of what we do, people have better brains and better lives. They suffer less, become happier and healthier and pass it on to others.' By answering that simple question, I get to share my life's purpose with everyone I meet."

Tana Amen: Interesting.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Isn't that beautiful?

Tana Amen: Yeah, I really like that.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Summarizing the key strategies to creating a joyful life. To live with love, passion, meaning and purpose over a prolonged period of time.

1. Focus on what you truly want in a balanced way. That helps to prevent burnout. What do you want in your relationships? I want to have a kind, caring, loving, passionate relationship with you. I want to raise healthy kids in a happy-

Tana Amen: And I think this is important to write down. To take time and to really write it down.

Dr. Daniel Amen: Write down what you want. Limit substances and activities that wear out your pleasure centers, such as caffeine, nicotine, pornography, digital addictions, high-risk behavior, scary movies.

3. Engage in high-value activities that increase dopamine and strengthen your pleasure centers in a healthy way. Getting more sunlight actually boosts dopamine. Exercise, massage. Listening to pleasurable music.

4. Reach out to help others.

5. Focus on living each moment with meaning and purpose and eliminate things that don't much matter. Next lesson we're going to talk about saying no to yourself and others.

6. Live with the end in mind.

Tana Amen: I like that. That's one of my favorites.

Dr. Daniel Amen: I read Elizabeth Kubler-Ross when I was in college. I took a class on death and dying.

Tana Amen: So did I. We both went to Christian colleges. So I think that, that's sort of.

Dr. Daniel Amen: We had to write our own funerals. So I always think about, does this ... And you and I talk about this a lot, if what I'm going to do now and the problem that I have now, does it have eternal value?

Tana Amen: That saves me, it literally saves me from sometimes either having a nervous breakdown or killing someone else. 'Cause things happen in your day. Things happen that just set you off. We had the wrong floor put in our house. Stuff like that happens. It's easy to just go, "Oh my gosh."

Dr. Daniel Amen: And did it have eternal value?

Tana Amen: No, we literally, we stopped, we helped each other through this 'cause we both got really angry at first and then we went, "Wait a second. This doesn't have eternal value."

Dr. Daniel Amen: Not even close.

Tana Amen: "There's a solution somewhere. We will figure it out. Let it go."

Dr. Daniel Amen: Anger dumps dopamine too. So you want to get rid of that. Alright, stay with us. Success starts here.

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