serotonin and lobsters

12 rules for life book – Reviewing rule 1


I like reading views that challenge my own thinking. I might still not agree with the view but it is interesting learning and reflecting on my own opinions. That is exactly what 12 rules of life Jordan Peterson’s book is doing for me. It is bringing new ideas in my mind to think about. Pigeontalk will be going over some rules so let’s start with rule 1

Rule 1 – Stand up straight with your shoulders back

Understanding serotonin and lobsters

Lobsters are used in the book to explain how serotonin works. In plain language lobster’s have a similar nervous system to humans and that’s why Jordan Peterson has used lobsters to explain how serotonin works. Scientists have been able map the neural circuitry of lobsters very accurately.

Serotonin in lobster’s increase confidence and impacts their posture. When a lobster has high serotonin it moves around its claws and fights other and confidently win. When a lobster wins a match it leaves with higher serotonin while the losing lobster has a decrease in serotonin.

A decrease in serotonin leads to the Lobster putting down its claws and the confidence decreases. When it goes into its next match it probably will lose again due to the decrease in serotonin.

Jordan Peterson uses this to explain why rich people become richer and the top dogs have it all. Whether its musicians or scientists there are a few percentage of people that are at the top. It is because they go in with high serotonin and keep winning.

Men that are high on serotonin attract better mates just like lobsters with high serotonin do.

Prozac(the antidepressant) uses serotonin reuptake inhibitors to increase the amount of serotonin in humans. But is not the only way to increase serotonin.

Posture and relation to serotonin

That is why fixing your posture is important as it can increase your serotonin. Doing a small thing like standing up straight can increase your confidence. This falls back onto theories such as power poses that Amy Cuddy talks about. To me standing up straight in itself is a power pose and can give a rush of confidence.

There are multiple ways to fixing your posture it can be from doing exercises such as kickboxing or roller skating. Doing stretches daily and sitting up straight.

Focus on your back and when ever you slouch put it straight again. You will notice when you are curved about you feel smaller and anxious and the opposite happens when you stand up straight confidently.

Posture as a metaphor to taking control of your life

The fixing posture to Jordan Peterson isn’t just about our body its about speaking your thoughts. It is about standing up for yourself and daring to be dangerous. It is about taking control of your life. Because you have low serotonin right now or are bullied doesn’t mean you always have to be there are ways about it. Now I know bullying is a more complex topic than he defines it but his view is still interesting to understand and partly adopt.

Wrap Up rule 1

I might not agree with all the points mentioned in the rules but there are lessons from each rule of his that we can benefit from. If you enjoyed the blog I recommend watching his Youtube video or reading his book 12 rules for life.

It might not be to agree with him but it is always great to open your mind to different perspectives even if it is to challenge them.

Other rules


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