The Reward System


The Reward System begins with one of several neurotransmitters spreading out to a “network” and involve the other neurotransmitters in what resembles a cascade (see diagram). As a result, one feels secure, calm, comfortable, and satisfied, referred to as the “reward”.

In its simplest definition, Reward Deficiency Syndrome is what occurs when such “networking” does not occur. In fact, research has shown that a significant amount of human behaviour is aimed toward achieving such feelings (12). But Why?

Here’s the answer: it’s all about survival. Human beings have learned through genetic evolution, over thousands of years, that at the most basic level, pain is a sign of threat to their existence. Thus, a needle poke to your finger will automatically result in pulling away your hand. At the same time, our brains are wired to ensure that we will repeat life-sustaining activities by associating those with pleasure or reward.

Read more about the Reward System in my book:

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