TO GAMBLE OR NOT TO GAMBLE....WITH LIFE

Essence of life - what moves us on? Desire!

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I do not go to the Casino, neither gamble...but while living my own life and watching the common behaviour of myself and the others, it often seems to me as act of gambling.

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Casino is not only place where people gamble, we are all gamblers with life: it is very typical for human race that we enter completely unprepared into various life situations, driven by our desires and wishes and cope with the positive and negative consequences of our decisions afterwards. about which we knew nothing at the time when we were choosing them.

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Whole human life is sort of game : the point of life is - surprise. And we can control it up to the certain level, but never completely...surprises always arrive.

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Our love-relationships are pure gambling up till the moment we become mature enough to try to choose more wisely...but when we choose wisely, it might not be so interesting any more. The most passionate love-relationships are that ones which can never be realized completely. We choose them whenever we need excitement, something interesting and powerful to move us on, to make us "feel alive". When we desperately want something (or somebody) it is far more interesting then getting it. Desire is force of creation. Living for long time without any passionate desire is like dying.

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Parenting is also like gambling: you never know anything about your future child, it is 9 months of waiting for surprise and many years of unpredictable situations and myriads of challenges afterwords.

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Our jobs, professions... are pure gambling as well. We get education in the age when majority of us have no clear idea what would really inspire us to work for next... hm...35-40 years of life. From the point of view of one human being, 40 years of life is eternity. More then half of life. Nothing strange that people are globally not satisfied with their professional decisions made in emotional childhood and they do not perform their professional roles as they should. In addition to that, humans are multi-talented, working just one type of job means expressing only one talent, what is killing people and their creativity.
Recession came in right time so many people got rid of wrong chosen professional chains and too difficult jobs, but now they need to struggle with survival. We need to "gamble" again and find the way how to survive and progress. To me, it sometimes seems not much better then in Casino.

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Dopamine hormones and how they trick us in life

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Gambling problem (compulsive gambling) is an urge to gamble despite harmful negative consequences or a desire to stop. People who are hurt by their lives and choose one negative experience after another, are just driven by the same urges as compulsive gamblers are. Actually all people are driven by the same hormonal urges, just some of us see ourselves as successful life-gamblers, some of us as losers.

Why is that?

In our brains we have dopamine hormone (necessary for life) released by hypothalamus, that is responsible for many vital functions in human life. Thanks to dopamine, we have motivation for living, cognition, it gives us feeling of reward, in allows us attention, ability for learning, it influences our mood, it influences also our ability to move... Dopamine hormone is affecting all our life activities and decisions.

Dopamine allow us to enjoy in food, sex, adventures in life ...

Alcohol, nicotine, drugs, medications, gambling, playing any type of games, watching TV...increase level of dopamine (excitement) in brain.

When we start to loose dopamine, our bodies start to deteriorate: dementia, Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease are all products of loosing dopamine, our bodies cannot live without it.

How dopamine is tricking us?

Dopamine receptors especially get exited when an unexpected reward is presented, so there must be surprises in human life to keep us alive.

Dopamine receptors are also intelligent: they also like to PREDICT WHEN reward will occur. Process of prediction is excitement itself, and activates our mental abilities, so we might get obsessed with something just to involve ourselves in process of prediction of positive outcome, while waiting for reward.

If there is no reward arriving, dopamine receptors always loose interest, when they get "disappointed", so in order to continue any type of human activity, we need to believe that positive outcome will arrive...and in the meantime get periodically small rewards for our activity. Dopamine receptors also get temporary satisfied with any type of small, unexpected reward which allow them to continue with their obsession with certain activity in spite the fact that reward was so small that activity would be really worth it.

Our obsession with some activity stops when there is none reward arriving any more, but dopamine receptors also find pleasure in "remembering" the past rewards, so obsession can continue for prolonged time.... this is especially obvious in relationships that after breaking continue to live just in the heads of people who find pleasure in remembering the past excitements, despite the fact that all is over and will never happen again in this lifetime.

So many people are blinded by dopamine games in the brain, by pleasures of occasionally winning small rewards, so they cannot see that they are loosing more then gaining, but is fact that only pleasure and learning motivate us to continue living, so all is very relative.

Dopamine receptors like challenges, challenges are most important for process of learning. When everything is same, we cannot learn. But too many challenges are burning our neural system, we are able to literally burn out too quickly in the life in case we have too much challenges and no reward arriving. When there is too many challenges, there is no place for enjoyment in reward. Lack of reward is killing our brain receptors. So that is the reason we need to slow down and gamble with our life more wisely.

We cannot avoid gambling games of our dopamine receptors, but knowledge and understanding them can bring us much more pleasurable life... and can teach us how to cooperate with them (instead they trick us) and gain much deeper level of satisfaction with some real progress in life on that we can truly be proud of.

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Comments 43 comments

vrajavala profile image

vrajavala 7 years ago from Port St. Lucie

Oin Imdia a brain takes a vow not to gamble or speculate. It's a bad habit


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much, for the visit and comment, Vrajavala.

Yes, gambling is bad habit just this Hub is not about that type of gambling... it is about essence of life.


Craig Suits profile image

Craig Suits 7 years ago from Florida

Tatjana...

Very interesting conclusion about our dopamine levels and our "positive" states of mind. I think I'll dig out my MP3 player and plug in a little Chuck Berry into my ears. That ought to keep me on the "positive" side all day...


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

He, he, Craig, yes, music is also rising level of dopamine, and serotonine, after I finished this Hub,my choise of music was different then usual.

BTW, the Hub is based on research of neuroscientists who analysed human behaviour while gambling... I just compared it to the rest of human life.


Raven King profile image

Raven King 7 years ago from Cabin Fever

Hvala, Tatjana you are a very good teacher.

Ja mislite that crossing the street in some towns a gamble...mm...


dohn121 profile image

dohn121 7 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

You write such fascinating hubs, Tatjana-Mihaela. It's good to hear that you don't gamble. I don't gamble nearly as much as I used to and only those that do always "lose" in the end. I like how you used it as a basis of comparison for measuring levels of dopamine.

I have no problems enjoying life, yet don't have much money (yet). I don't equate happiness with money, but having just enough is important towards happiness. No one in this world should have to go through their entire lives by struggling. Finding happiness through love is however crucial.

Thank you as always, my friend. I really enjoyed reading this.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Hvala ti puno Raven na komentaru i posjeti. Drago mi je vidjeti te ovdje.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

He, he, Dohn, wisdom in life teaches us to be more careful in (life) gambling.

Thank you so much for the visit and sharing your experience with all of us.


jill of alltrades profile image

jill of alltrades 7 years ago from Philippines

Great hub Tatjana! I like the way you connected dopamine and addiction. I agree, surprises and rewards are important to our life. They excite and give us zest in life.


Craig Suits profile image

Craig Suits 7 years ago from Florida

Tatjana, send me your regular email if you wish. I got a ton of great pics and things I can send you to use in your future hubs. My general email is dooahhh1@peoplepc.com.

I also played guitar in a 50's rock and roll band for 15 years and still play drums, guitar and keyboard. I've got a super collection of really great sounds you may not be privy too over there I'm sure you'd love as I do. Once you get into great music as I did you'll discover it has healing and other positive powers that simply don't exist any where else on earth. I'd like to send you the rest of that Obesity chapter from my book. It didn't all load here. Must be a text limit. The reason is I said almost exactally what you said above without the chemical references. Basically, when trying to loose weight, one needs a 180 degree life style change not only as far as food types and amounts is concerned but just about everything else in life in order to give birth to a new, and exciting you that will not only allow one to loose weight but feel great about it as well with new and exciting achievments and goals in life. That's what keeps me alive believe it or not. My music, new inventions, treasure hunting, my new company, and a little 7 year old girl I take care of who doesn't have a dad, and her mother is an addict currently in jail for a long time again I hope...Actually, I got too many damn positives. You can see her on my web site under "The Many Faces of Emily". She reminds me of you, hungry for knowledge all the time. She's a piece of work...

Stay cool.....


Bbudoyono profile image

Bbudoyono 7 years ago

Such is life. It is full of surprises , sadness, joy, bitterness, etc. Your hub is very resourceful. I really enjoyed it.


H P Roychoudhury profile image

H P Roychoudhury 7 years ago from Guwahati, India

I highly appreciate your writing such as - it is an article of lesson and learn. Thank you for such a valuable article.


ratnaveera profile image

ratnaveera 7 years ago from Cumbum

Very interesting Hub! Most of our people are not aware of dopamine harmone of our brain and its activities. A lot of thanks for sharing such a great information! Thumbs Up!


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Hi, Craig, I cannot agree more with you.

My mail is mihaelat999@yahoo.com .I am just sometimes too busy to answer on all e-mails that I get, because I work online as well...so one needs to be patient with me, and that is why I keep a lot of communications here on Hubs.

I will check your Hub about Emily very soon.

Thank you so much for sharing your life-story.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you so much Jill, I am glad that you liked the article.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much Bbudoyono for your visit and comment.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Dear HPR, thanks for your nice words and support.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

I am so glad that you have found these info useful, Ratnavera! Many thanks for the visit and comment.


alex 7 years ago

Very nice!


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much, Alex.


Modern Machine 7 years ago

Very intersting


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Are you spamming, maybe, Modern Machine???


VioletSun profile image

VioletSun 7 years ago from Oregon/ Name: Marie

I am very much at the moment into studying the brain and how it affects our reality. I highly recommend, Evolve Your Brain. The Science of Changing Your Mind by Dr. Joe Dispenza (from What The Bleep); he talks about literally changing the brain with our new thoughts which even influences our genetic makeup and our reality. I like the way you explain the function of dopamine, makes it much clearer for me. As usual, you have a way of making things clearer!


WriteAngled profile image

WriteAngled 7 years ago from Treorci, Cymru

Zdravo Tatjana, you have some very interesting insights here. Ja sam se udala za Zagrep?ana i živjela sam tamo s njim pet godina, po?evši u 1979g. Bilo je to baš ludo kockanje! :))


Eastern Rainbow profile image

Eastern Rainbow 7 years ago

I like

??


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much, Mary, I will certainly tried to find this book you recommended, in case it is translated on Croatian (explanation: while reading and writting so many on English, my brain take rests when I read on my own language.)

I am more then sure that you will succeed in everything you really want to.

Right now, started to read "Happier then God" from N.D.Walsh.

THank you so much for visit and comment.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Zdravo, WriteAngled, žao mi je što ?ujem o tvom kockarskom iskustvu s Hrvatom. Nadam se da si nau?ila lekciju i da sad živiš puno sretniji život.

Puno ti hvala na komentaru i posjeti... i na tome što si napisala komentar na mom jeziku.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Hi Eastern Rainbow, I hope you like my Hub, not the gambling in casino. Thank you very much for the visit and comment.


poetlorraine 7 years ago

yeah we all gamble daily like it or like it not..... great hub as ever


SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 7 years ago from Southern California, USA

Gambling in certain areas of our lives is definitely something we all do. It can be a power high when something great comes out of our decisions, and like the guy at the casino we can be dejected if are moves lead us to a less desirable outcome. I really like your analogy about gambling=living.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

I am so glad, Poetlorraine that you recognized our human gambling nature. I am very glad for your visit and comment.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you so much for your wise comment, SweetiePie, your visit here is highly appreciated. Thank you again.


blaise25 profile image

blaise25 7 years ago from close to you...

great hub ;p

I don't gamble, too. But I take risk..

well written, thanks for sharing! ;p


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much Blaise for being honest. Thank you for comment and visit.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much Blaise for being honest. Thank you for comment and visit.


Cris A profile image

Cris A 7 years ago from Manila, Philippines

Uncertainties and surprising twists of fate are what keep the excitement in living. Otherwise, it's one boring journey. Win or lose, it's life and you continue living it. Thanks for sharing this insightful hub my friend :D


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you Cris - is nice having YOU as friend.


The Rising Glory profile image

The Rising Glory 7 years ago from California

Not sure I agree, but interesting HUB


mercon profile image

mercon 7 years ago

i hate gambler


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you so much, The Rising Glory, unfortunately for us, these are scientific facts. Thanks for visit and comment.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 7 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Well, Mercon, I do not, but would not want to live with one "real one"...


agungssuleiman profile image

agungssuleiman 6 years ago from Cambodja

I think your article gives me knowledge of real life. I like challenges and taking risks, you really give me certain clue completing the puzzle which is Dopamine. Thanks.


Tatjana-Mihaela profile image

Tatjana-Mihaela 6 years ago from Zadar, CROATIA Author

Thank you very much, Agungssuleiman.

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