There are a few things that affect our lives in a big way. Some are good and some are bad. For example, drugs have a huge influence on the brain and how we feel and behave, but obviously they have a negative impact on our health. So, is there something just as powerful as drugs to influence ourselves in a positive way without the negative side effects? Yes! It’s called love.
Forget Heroin Or Cocaine: Choose Love
When you are really in love, the chemical changes in your brain are equal to what large heroin or cocaine doses will do. In one study, participants were shown pictures of people they loved and the same regions of the brain that lit up when a person takes drugs lit up when looking at the picture. [Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16255001]
In other words, when you have strong feelings of love, you are activating the areas of the brain that promotes reward and pleasure, just as you do when you take drugs. So, if you want to get a natural high in life, choose love.
Love Makes You Be A Better Person To Others
We all know the story of the Grinch. He was a mean one who tried to steal Christmas, but when he realized that the people of Whoville didn’t need their gifts to celebrate Christmas, he also realized that their love was what made it special. His heart grew and he instantly became a better person who gave all the presents back. Yes, it’s a story, but it really does promote a powerful truth – love makes you a better person.
When you feel the power of love, you put your focus outside of yourself. When you do that, you can see things from other people’s point of view, and you can do things that benefit not just you, but other people as well.
Love Makes You Be Better To Yourself Too
The feeling of love can help you make better choices for yourself. The sense of self-esteem that comes from being loved can help you to take better care of your mental and physical health, and even help you to take risks that improve your life. In addition, when you love someone else, you are more likely to work on yourself so that your relationship with them stays healthy and strong.
Love Makes You Physically Healthier
This is no secret! Researchers have long known that the power of love extends into a healthier you. It promotes good heart health, lowers blood pressure, extends the lifespan, reduces the risk of diabetes, reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s Disease, and can even help people overcome things like cancer. This is true for platonic love and for romantic love, so even if you don’t have a romantic relationship right now, you can still experience the health benefits of love.
Also, love has an impact on stress levels. Just being around people you love can help you lower cortisol levels. High cortisol levels can lower immune function, increase blood pressure, promote heart disease, and affect sleep (which is very important for good health) negatively.
Love Improves Mental Health
Love also impacts mental health in a few ways. First, it lowers cortisol levels, which helps to decrease the risk of depression and improve learning and memory functions. Second, the power of love can offer you support, build your confidence, and give you a sense of value in this world. All of those things can have a huge impact on your mental health and happiness.