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  • Kick Ass Zombie Hunter

Are You Building Dopamine Days?

A sunflower wearing sunglasses.

Work life is busy. Home life is busy. And the busyness and chaos dominates our lives, impacting our ability to stay motivated, happy and productive. One approach to help people on your team gain some traction is to build in dopamine days or dopamine time – a strategy that works to enhance happiness, creativity, motivation and overall well-being.


Dopamine, the feel-good neurotransmitter, plays a critical role in the brain’s reward and pleasure system and is associated with feelings of happiness. When we experience a sense of accomplishment or recognition, our brain releases dopamine, which reinforces the behaviour. It’s a natural mechanism that has significant benefit on how we approach our workdays.


Dopamine days are all about strategically planning the workweek to incorporate activities that will trigger a dopamine release. The goal of a dopamine day is to create a positive cycle of motivation that will lead to overall higher job satisfaction, more enthusiasm and engagement towards work and of course, families will benefit when you leave work happier.


Here are a few points on building dopamine days:

  • Get your team involved and let them know about dopamine days. Culture is an accumulation of everyone’s actions and behaviours so let them in on the accountability.

  • Set daily or weekly goals that have a real purpose and build your dopamine days around this.

  • Break projects into smaller milestones which provides a steady stream of dopamine release because they give checkpoints to celebrate.

  • Engage in activities that promote learning and skill development because new knowledge will trigger dopamine release with the sense of accomplishment.

  • Take short group breaks to give brains a chance to reset and engage in social connection.

  • Create a positive environment – maybe this is bringing plants into the space, quotes, a mural. It’s different for every team.

  • Bring a team together to collaborate on big projects, share ideas, or share learnings.

Dopamine days empower teams to choose to take control of their work experiences, just through leveraging the brain’s natural reward system. Turning routine workdays, into opportunities for creativity, innovation and fulfillment.

 

A Team Human Conversation

Fight workplace zombies in your organization and join Team Human! Gather a group of fellow workplace zombie hunters to discuss our most recent blog post. Use the questions below to kick start your conversation.

  1. How do you believe incorporating the concept of dopamine days can impact our employees overall or within your department?

  2. How can you balance the need for routine tasks and creating more rewarding activities for your team to maintain a sense of excitement and engagement?

  3. What can we do to build dopamine days together or in our teams?

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