You Must Space Out The Things That Make You Happy

There is a finite list of things that can give you a feeling of happiness. I’m not referring to everlasting happiness, but a jolt of happiness. For example, sex is a pleasurable experience for most men, but the frequency at which you engage in sex can affect the happiness you get from it. The first time you have good sex establishes a baseline of 100% happiness from a sex orgasm. As you have more sexual episodes of increasing frequency, that number will fall below 100%, possibly to a level where it no longer gives you even half the contentment.

If you’ve ever gone on vacation with a girlfriend, you were at first excited about being able to have sex on demand. The first day of sex is quite good. The second day becomes a little tiring. On the third day, sex with your girlfriend becomes more of a trial, and your penis no longer wants or needs additional vaginal contact. In this case, your happiness has dipped below 50% and you would welcome a break from sex. If you are unable to take this break because your girlfriend has somehow enslaved you, sex can actually become torturous. It now becomes a source of unhappiness. This tells us that once you are able to obtain or experience that which makes you happy, either through good fortune or effort, you must deliberately restrict your exposure to it. Otherwise you will pass the point of diminishing return and a once happy act will make you unhappy or indifferent.

This analogy can apply to anything which makes you temporarily happy: eating fast food, checking Facebook, drinking with friends, masturbating, and so on. If you don’t space out how frequently you indulge in these things, your brain will no longer gain joy from them and becomes stingy with its release of dopamine. Thankfully there’s hope—you can trick your brain into thinking its novel by spacing the events out.

I experienced dopamine fatigue with coffee when I was having three cups a day. I used to get great pleasure from coffee, but I turned it into a habit that brought me no pleasure, not even an energy boost. I hit the reset button, went without coffee for a month, and then re-introduced it at a rate of once a week, twice a week, and then three times a week. After experimenting for a few months, I discovered that I will get at least an 80% happiness feeling from coffee if I drink it only on Sunday and Wednesday. On these two days, there is extra spring in my step when I head to the coffee shop for my special treat. The caffeine gives me a quick physiological boost that I greatly enjoy, but which I would not experience if I drank it every day.

Sex is another activity I examined. For me to be at least 80% happy with sex, I determined I should have it only once a week. I want to have it more than that (at least two or three times), but at those levels, I start to see sex as a predictable biological function. One of the reasons I have avoided relationships is not necessary because I don’t want a connection with one girl, but because the sex becomes boring. By only having it once a week, I greatly look forward to spending time with the girl I’m seeing. Like when walking into a cafe on coffee day, I approach our date with the highest energy level.

I’ve looked into spacing out other things, such as drinking, masturbating, and surfing the internet. I found that to remain happy about the things which are not scarce, I must exhibit self-control. Without self-control, unhappiness is sure to result from the things that are capable of giving me a pleasure boost. How many people do you know exhibit self-control when it comes to their moments of pleasure? Possible zero. Unable to space out their enjoyments, they simply stop enjoying them, and when you no longer become happy from the little things in life, you start to sacrifice your emotional well-being in the search for drama, problems, or entertainment, or you simply enter a depression. Therefore when supply of something pleasant is unlimited for you, a lack of self-control will destabilize your emotional well-being.

Having to consciously space pleasures wasn’t a problem for humans in the past. Ancient people didn’t have an unlimited supply of the things we take for granted today, so they could fill their bellies with the latest catch without having to regulate their intake, since it may be a while until they make another good catch again. We, on the other hand, have an easy life. A middle-class American man can purchase any food (full of delicious fat and sugar), have 24-hour internet access on their phone, and—if he’s a player—have booty call access for sex most nights of the week. It would sound like he’s living a dream life, but if he doesn’t restrict those things to the point where he’s left wanting, they will all cease bringing him pleasure. The only solution is for him to experiment with spacing and then use his self-control to say no to those things that he can easily have.

Read Next: The Relationship Between Blindness And Happiness

54 Comments
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Mike Hubbard
Mike Hubbard
6 years ago

“The real pleasure-seeking is the combination of luxury and austerity in
such a way that the luxury can really be felt.” –G. K. Chesterton

Z.
Z.
6 years ago

There is another price paid besides the loss of the pleasure taken from these activities: time. When indulging in something several times a week it is easy to see huge swaths of time disappear to our vices.

americanbk
americanbk
6 years ago

But once a week??

jbird669
jbird669
6 years ago
Reply to  americanbk

Yeah I’m having a hard time reconciling that, but given he past successes, maybe it makes sense, for Roosh.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago
Reply to  americanbk

Blowing a big load from all the build up is hot. I should’ve tried that at 18 but could never keep in my pants long enough to wait a week.

Jones
Jones
6 years ago
Reply to  Cedric

Just eat lots of oats or take concentrated green oat capsules.

Thank me later.

Roosh_V
Roosh_V
6 years ago
Reply to  americanbk

Yes but during that episode, I would want to go 3 times or so.

Xavier
Xavier
6 years ago
Reply to  americanbk

There will be at least 3 women involved in each once-per-week session.

Jay
Jay
6 years ago

I want to have sex everyday. I’ll just fantasy about other girls while I’m having it with my girlfriend. Keeps it fresh

Dick De Tool
Dick De Tool
6 years ago

R-o-o-s-h

Have you ever noticed you start that morbid introspection every time you go to DC (maybe America?)?

I actually felt a twinge of sadness reading your tweet your be in the District of Corruption for a month. Go to a sausage fest with $12 drinks and 6s who act like they are Penthouse Pets on a yacht in the Riviera and you’ll be kissing your boarding pass to Kiev.

Ps-You should check out Antalya Turkey (EE girls to their to party at all inclusive beach resorts and if theirs a better set of exotic faces, juicy full bootys, and nice racks than Turkish women I’d be surprised. Beirut Lebanon is another place that could use a bang guide. In Asia the big booties are in Jakarta and Hanoi- go to Asia- my gut tells me you’re like me and dig variety and hate the same crap all the time.

splooge
splooge
6 years ago
Reply to  Dick De Tool

why lebanon when u can babg israel. european n middle eastern jew mix are a good lookin bunch.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago
Reply to  splooge

I never said Tel Av iv sucked-you’re absolutely right Jewosh girls are totally gorgeous but you can’t tell me in good faith a big Turkish rack and booty isn’t hot as well?

The party states of Middle East are underrated-where can you find more exotic women than that? Vanilla brunettes are a dime a dozen-go to Michigan for that.

Think of the title-
Bang Israel (that would have the ADL pissing out hot lava-thank me with an infield tour for that idea if you $$$ on it Roosh)
Bang Turkey
Bang Iran
Bang Lebanon
Bang Egypt

Roosh_V
Roosh_V
6 years ago
Reply to  Dick De Tool

I’m not in DC for the girls, and won’t labor to get laid. But if I see a girl I like, I will try.

Womens Rights Activist
Womens Rights Activist
6 years ago
Reply to  Dick De Tool

Are you a pedophile? Why are you posting such degrading and sexually explicit comments about women?

Too many women in Canada are victims of male aggression, and many school boards will find out who are behind these misogynist posts.

The TDSB internet code of conduct will not tolerate any hate speech, libel, misogyny or sexually explicit comments about women. Should it be found out that you are a student or male teacher from Toronto, the police will have the warrant to seize your computer and lay charges under the Criminal Code of Canada.

We as women cannot take any more of your misogyny and sexist comments anymore. A poor female teacher from Edmonton was cyberbullied for over 2 years!!!! You men need psychological counselling.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago

I wasn’t aware we had Communist troll day-welcome!

Honey read Dr. Henry Makows stuff on feminism-hes a fellow Canuck. The ROckefellers own you and use your anger and misdirection to play you like a pawn. How does it feel to be owned by bankers?

iHateFeminists
iHateFeminists
6 years ago

Cyberbullied? Now what the fuck have you feminists come up with? You suck!

woman who doesn't care
woman who doesn't care
6 years ago

wow, I as a woman think you are full of shit, both sides are really we’re just as bad as each other. we both objectify the other sex on physical appearance, I mean lets face it you probably want a guy with muscles I do to but I’m not going to. Men want a women with nice boobs and a great arse. I think we should just all try to get along.

Shizuppy
Shizuppy
4 years ago

LOL nice troll attempt.

Emahray Trolle
Emahray Trolle
6 years ago

I have a cup of coffee when I wake up. I try to quietly enjoy that cup and not recount in excruciating detail all my life screwups, or otherwise embark on scheming about the coming day’s activities.

Recently am putting effort into actual meditation; emptying my mind and trying to ignore the inner monologue. Making an inch of progress. Reading Ekhart Tolle’s “The Power of Now” and Vikto Davich “8 Minute Meditation”. Another one that worked for me was Guy Finley’s “Letting Go”. There are countless others.

I considered submitting a ROK essay : “Have Women Ruined Yoga?”.

Jones
Jones
6 years ago
Reply to  Emahray Trolle

Time to bring back the calisthenics in British Calisthenics (aka Yoga) …

Let’s follow the Sergeant Major, marching up and down the square!

(or let’s not … off you go, then.)

fluffybiskuts
fluffybiskuts
6 years ago
Reply to  Emahray Trolle

Meditation…do it. Lots of scientific evidence about the positive physiologic changes that occur during meditation eg lower blood pressure etc. The brain was thought to be unchangeable after age 25 or so but science now thinks believes the brain has “neuroplasticity”. Meditation may help the brain rewire itself….

truth
truth
6 years ago
Reply to  Emahray Trolle

Elmer, I’m with you on about 85% of the stuff you’re doing and have written in past comments. May I suggest the Oprah/Deepak program of a 21 day meditation challenge? Google it, it’s getting me pretty good results after 4 days.

Giovonny
Giovonny
6 years ago

“Dopamine Fatigue”

“Self Control”

I love Roosh’s thorough examination of “happiness”. It is often a trcky balance to stay fulfilled and “happy”.

Young guys think the pussy and partying will keep them happy forever..

I wish life was that simple!

Cultivate your mental/psychological tranquility. You will need it!

Sam Spade
Sam Spade
6 years ago

Americans equate comfort with happiness.

turkishcandy
turkishcandy
6 years ago

Sorry Roosh. I almost NEVER disagree with you, I even unconsciously let my ‘filter’ down when I’m reading your posts, but this time I fail to see the self improvement in your way of thinking. You sound more like a buddhist monk than the self-improvement coach that I think of you, which is not surprising since you advocate some aspects of buddhism in your game.

But unsatisfaction and the pursuit of new highs are what drive men to self improvement, exploration and new discoveries. I think it’s good that you get bored from regular sex, this way you will push yourself to find more and more beautiful and feminine women all the time. True, this will make you less happy and more tired for the same amount of pleasure you used to get from less beautiful women, but are happiness and satisfaction really the end goal? Self improvement (Growth) is more important than happiness (comfort) as you once said http://www.rooshv.com/growth-vs-comfort

Don’t let fatigue get the better of you. Instead of limiting yourself to keep your experience novel and satisfying, DO get bored from that experience and strive to reach higher and further, even if that means your happiness won’t increase as the amount of effort it takes to satisfy you increases.

As for coffee, it can’t be compared to sex since it literally is an addiction and the more caffeine you take the less satisfied you will be from the same amount of caffein.

Nick
6 years ago
Reply to  turkishcandy

I think an important part of personal growth is recognizing the limits of what earthly pleasures provide. If someone is at a point where they are working harder and putting in more effort just to maintain the same level, that sounds like regression to me. Once you’ve squeezed 95% of the juice out of a pleasurable experience, those extra 1% increments aren’t really worth the effort. Better to relearn to appreciate the experience by abstaining from it and to seek out new pursuits.

Scesci
Scesci
6 years ago
Reply to  turkishcandy

I remember Roosh once stating that he’s more of a Stoic than a Buddhist

anon
anon
6 years ago

This is where old sayings like “variety is the spice of life” came from.

Monroe Ficus
6 years ago

I was just thinking about the past 6 months. After reading on Danger and Play about “dominating yourself” (that is, before you can be dominant you must have the dominance to control yourself), I’ve been pondering about reducing the levels of hedonistic pleasure so I recieve marginal utility. At first I did it with food (lost 30 lbs), now I’m doing it with coffee, alcohol, masturbation, getting laid.

BoinkMaster
BoinkMaster
6 years ago

Another sign for American women in decline:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/07/ben-hopper-photos-natural-beauty_n_5104969.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular

“Natural female beauty” my ass.

Smart Alex
Smart Alex
6 years ago
Reply to  BoinkMaster

It’s finally standard to have a shaved beave and they want stop shaving their armpits? Good lord no!!!

The only redeeming quality about that series of pics is they (models) all look like they have a nice eating disorder to work with so it shouldn’t be too difficult to get them back in line.

Womens Rights Activist
Womens Rights Activist
6 years ago
Reply to  BoinkMaster

I’m a woman and I find your post to be highly misogynist.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago

Roosh-she needs a ROK style ban-if we want to immerse ourselves in collectivst/candy ass/bleeding heart/pinko/post modern commie sewage we’ll go hang out with candy ass hipsters or retard bureaucrats at our local U or COmmunist party meeting.

Jones
Jones
6 years ago

Adjust your understanding: we don’t give a shit what you find.

I’m a man and I find your post to be highly irrelevant.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago

Game Brethren-
Has anyone ever heard of how Eastern European girls react to being “cool” or socially viable like American girls.
In other words, in Eastern Europe do girls care what kind of music you listen to, your opinion on fashion, style, culture, your clothes, car, and all the other superficial things girls in major American cities in the club and on the street are all wrapped up in???

Tom Dane
Tom Dane
6 years ago

I have found out that the only things that give you true happiness are always hard won. You have to work and with great risk of failing. When you achieve something great because you put a tremendous effort into it. That’s why former athletes sometimes have a hard time adjusting to their new life.
Sex, foot, drugs, alcohol, facebook gives you in reality, nothing. So I agree 100% with this post.

Matt
Matt
6 years ago

Maybe it’s because I am a fee years younger than you but I could not live with sex just once a week. Once a day minimum or i am jerking it

BoinkMaster
BoinkMaster
6 years ago

Why American women are boxy-shaped, fat-ass land whales and not hour-glass-shaped like they are supposed to be:

http://www.health-matrix.net/2012/02/20/the-obesity-epidemic-courtesy-of-the-agricultural-industry/

Indiana John
Indiana John
6 years ago

Kind of like the old saying “everything in moderation”

gordax
gordax
6 years ago
Reply to  Indiana John

as well as moderation

Zelcorpion
Zelcorpion
6 years ago

Roosh – you are an amazing guy looking into the motivations and specifics of the most minute human activities. Your mind is a funny son of a bitch. 🙂

Good post – btw.

Kingsley
Kingsley
6 years ago

It’s a thin line between spacing and procrastinating in my realm ofcourse.

Scesci
Scesci
6 years ago

Lifting weights is one thing that never gets old, it may get dull to some people after a couple of years, but the neurochemical reaction seems to get only better with time

Someone
Someone
6 years ago
Reply to  Scesci

A sport you like applies, as well. …
That isn’t like eating, though. You expect focused exercise to not be all “pleasure”- it is almost always partly or mostly “work”. But, the PARTIAL pleasure, particularly after fighting through with the work, IS consistent.

Aaron Sollesse
6 years ago

Well said, and this perspective even has scientific studies to prove it.

When we starve the brain of pleasure, we become more sensitive to it biochemically. For example, food restriction increases the number of dopamine receptors http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071025091036.htm.

It seems our brain has an in-built “pleasure budget” it needs to fill and it’ll modulate dopamine sensitivity to meet this need.

But if that’s the case and this is based on the reward system of dopamine, then this means that increasing dopamine sensitivity by restricting sex for example should therefore increase pleasure for all other pleasurable activities like learning, socialising, your hobbies, etc.

Though there is clearly a limit to the amount of bodily pleasure we can/should restrict to sensitise ourselves. Anecdotally, we can look to Buddhist monks who restrict themselves from the many temptations of the mind yet have high rates of diabetes, which implies that there is a minimum of bodily pleasure that must be obtained from some source.

Still I guess this is even more evidence for the virtues of exercising self-control as a way to achieve everything you want both in the material world, and for your own happiness. And it gives an explanation for why feminists are never happy no matter how many of their fleeting desires are fulfilled.

Brilliant writing Roosh, I love this direction you’re going in.

Balboa
Balboa
6 years ago

Real talk here. As far as sex goes, I personally maximise my happiness by having it 2-3 times per week, and with any single woman no more than a few times in total. Variety is good, but not constant ONS. Everyone is different, and it’s important to realise the limitations of hedonism.

Cedric
Cedric
6 years ago

https://soundcloud.com/thechristianmcqueenshow

Roosh-this was a home run. I wish you did more interviews. Nice job.

Scientific Method
Scientific Method
6 years ago

As usual, the takeaway from this post is rather vague. It’s not even clear what the central claim is and the supporting reasons for it. It sounds like Roosh simply has addictions (like checking facebook) and can’t control himself, yet if other people have a wide variety of enjoyable hobbies and interests, he’ll tell them “you’re doing it wrong.” It doesn’t make much sense to me to jump to such extremes and be so dogmatic about it, but most of the posts here suffer from the same myopic attitude. Perhaps a better title would have been “Some men should try to appreciate things more” which would have avoided making bold, unprovable claims about what makes a person happy and how frequently they should get their happiness.

Chris
Chris
6 years ago

Fucking brilliant, mate. Just pure gold. Could not up vote highly enough.