Dopamine Detox

Dopamine detox book cover


Title: Dopamine Detox
Author: Thibaut Meurisse
Genre: Productivity
Pages: 55 pages
Difficulty Level: Easy

Dopamine Detox: Book Review

Dopamine Detox by Thibaut Meurisse is a short guide to rewiring our brain into doing essential and fruitful things and fighting the epidemic of Procrastination.
When you read this book, you will find some initial information about the role and functionality of dopamine in our bodies. Though the section is short, I feel the author has done his best to provide as much valuable knowledge, without burdening you with high-level details.
It lays the foundation of the successive chapters, and finding them interconnected creates a great flow of information.
Every chapter will have suggestions to fight the stimulation urges or reasons why it happens. All this finally leads to the main topic of why you picked up this book.
And that is Fighting Procrastination.
I have found his suggestion particularly useful as there is logic hidden behind his every argument; when you read it, you will be easily able to relate to any habits.

And the icing on the cake is the small size of the book. This book is hardly 50-odd pages thick. Therefore, you can easily read this book in one sitting and make reasonable plans to fight any of your bad habits.
To multiply the effect of this book, I recommend you read a book by another author, The Atomic Habits by James Clear.
In my opinion, these books go hand in hand and create a much bigger impact. As compared to reading only one of them.
Even if you are unable to grab a hand on Atomic habits, reading Dopamine Detox will certainly provide you with exciting insights and provide real-life suggestions to help you improve.

Dopamine Detox: Book Summary in 3 sentences

  1. Procrastination is the result of you being overstimulated.
  2. Once you control the stimulation, you can easily control how much you work.
  3. Overcoming procrastination is like a habit, it builds slowly overtime.

Who Should Read It?

People who find themselves addicted to any thing can use these book for good measure and make a progress in their lives.

Top 3 Quotes: Dopamine Detox

  • Dopamine and constant stimulation can impair your ability to think long term
  • Your focus is a scarce asset, which is why marketers spend billions of dollars to attract your attention.
  • By giving words to your thoughts (or worries), you can address them more easily.

I’ve compiled notes on some of the key topics in the book which can give you a better overview of the content you’re gonna find in Dopamine Detox.

Dopamine Detox Notes

Part 1: Dopamine and the Role It Plays

  • Dopamine is a neurotransmitter which makes us anticipate rewards.
  • Dopamine gives the desire to take action to earn the reward. It is the force that makes us act.

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Part 2: The Problem

  • The more you choose path of quick rewards, the more it would want the quicker it would want the reward for the same level of anticipation, leading you to get addicted.
  • Constant stimulation to quick dopamine can impair your ability to think long term.
  • When you are overstimulated you search for the next quick dose of dopamine, as you do not get it by doing long-hour tasks, you procrastinate.

Part 3: The Benefits of Dopamine Detox

  • Helps reduce stimulation, allowing you to revert to more natural state. When you need less stimulation, seemingly challenging, boring or tedious tasks will become more appealing and easier to tackle.
    • 48 Hour Dopamine Detox: Eliminate all sources of external stimulation for a total of 48 hours.
      • Reduces overall level of stimulation.
      • Remove, if any:
        1. Drug
        2. Excessive Exercising
        3. Movies
        4. Internet
        5. Social Media
        6. Sugar
        7. Video Games
    • 24 Hours Dopamine detox: Partial removal of biggest source of stimulation. Beneficial when you can not do above said longer duration detox.

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Part 4: Three Step Method for a Successful Dopamine Detox

  1. Identify your biggest distraction:

    • Make a list of “Can” and “Can’t” that you are allowed to do on your detox duration.
    • The big distractions will fall under the category of “Can’ts”

    For better understanding, answer the following:

    • If I stopped doing only one thing, which one would increase my focus and boost my productivity the most ?
    • What other activities do I need to avoid in order to help me increase my focus significantly?
  2. Add friction:

    • Harder something is to access, less likely you are going to do it and vice-versa.
    • Redesign your environment to make undesirable behaviours more difficult to engage.( Book review: Atomic Habits)
    • Add friction to task under your “can’t” list.
    • Add app blocker, switch off your phone and put it in the next room.
    1. Start first thing in the morning:
      • You are very less stimulated in the morning. So, you are more likely to do, lengthy tasks with focus.
      • Build good habits to improve your focus.
      • Do:
        • Meditation
        • Stretch
        • Write down goals for the day( Article on weekly planner)
        • Repeat Positive Affirmations

Part 5: Doing the work ( And Overcoming Procrastination)

1. Plan Your Day:

    • Planning your day let’s you take control of your day and build a framework for getting more things done.
    • Provides opportunity to clarify which tasks are important and which one aren’t.
    • Reduces the odds of your mind getting distracted during the day.
    • Feel less stressed and more in control of your day.

2. How To Plan Your Day:

  • Write down important 3-4 tasks for the day.
  • Arrange them accordingly to the importance level.
  • Choose the tasks that matches your long term objectives.

Hint: Take out a slot every Sunday where you decide, necessary tasks for the next week. If the slots are empty, do not force fill the tasks, something will come up during the day.

3. Develop Laser-Sharp Focus:

  • Dedicate at least 45 minutes per day, without any disturbance or distraction.
  • Be at the same place, at the same time everyday. Develops habit over long term.
  • Choose a trigger: Identify trigger that can lead you to do the tasks better and effectively.
  • Get started: Just begin your work. Once you get started, you are more likely to develop focus as the time passes.

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4. Eliminate Distraction:

  • Remove distractions
  • Turn off all devices, social media.

5. Work Without Interruptions

  • A 45- minute intense work is recommended.
  • Repeat 2-3 times each day after taking 5-10 minutes break.

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