Ciara Gives Us a DOSE of Happiness

Ciara Gives Us a DOSE of Happiness


Ciara’s 2018 hit single, “Dose,” is a high energy pep-rally style song that may increase some happy chemicals as you listen and move to it. It includes a marching band, community dancing, and the hook “when you fall, just get back up again.” When Ciara sings the refrain “I’ma hit you with a DOSE!” she is ensuring the listener that when they are “hit,” they are going to feel good. She also encourages the listener that “when you fall, just get back up again,” recognizing that life isn’t perfect but we should keep moving anyway. Life is not perfect, but this is a perfect song to help you remember how to get your “DOSE” of mood-boosting brain chemicals.  When they dip, you can boost them up again!

DOSE is the acronym used to group four important chemicals for feeling good. Those chemicals are Dopamine, Oxytocin, Serotonin, and Endorphins. They are nicknamed the “Happy Chemicals,” or, for people who love alliteration: “Happy Hormones.”

Acknowledging the role of these chemicals, and how to keep them flowing, is an important part of recovery and coping for mood and anxiety issues. Talk therapy can help untangle, clarify, and plan, but for a full recovery, we have to get those happy chemicals flowing again. You need to eat, you need a sense of connection, you need sunlight, you need exercise.

There are tons of songs that reference these chemicals either just with their vibe or specifically in the lyrics. Once I realized that there were songs actually titled “Dopamine,” “Oxytocin,” “Serotonin,” and “Endorphins/Epinephrine.” I decided that each chemical gets its own blog post. And since Ciara’s song is literally titled “DOSE,” this post serves as the introduction to the whole project.

If you want to understand more about Happy Hormones, in general, here are some links for further exploration:

This article gives a brief overview of each chemical, and why we consider them all for MH care:

This article is a comprehensive summary of what the happy chemicals are, what it looks like when you lack them, and how to boost them naturally through your behaviors:

Here are some helpful YouTube explanations:

A Two-Minute Video that explains DOSE chemicals:

A Ten-Minute Video that explains DOSE chemicals more in depth:

Now that we have reviewed all that science, I will conclude that Ciara is relationships goals for her fabulous collaborations with so many artists. Those collaborations include: “1-2 Step” with Missy Elliot, “Oh,” with Ludacris, and “Goodies, with Petey Pablo. Her music videos usually include a crowd of people that represent her community. The video for “Dose” is a tribute to her hometown Atlanta, GA. She even includes the mayor at that time, Kiesha Lance Bottoms.

Her promotion of relationships and community is also a promotion of happiness. This is notable because as I was searching for what to include in this post, I came across this fascinating 75 year longitudinal study over about what makes people happy. I’ll spoil the conclusion for you: it’s happy relationships.

TED Talk: Good Relationships Keep Us Happier and Healthier – The results of a 75 year study on happiness:

Spencer Northey

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