Motivation is one of the most crucial drivers of success, and for good reason!
Unless we’re sufficiently motivated to accomplish whatever it is that we want, we don’t stand a chance in this world.
However, motivation is not merely an ephemeral concept but rather a chemical one. And with the help of brain-boosting supplements, motivation levels can be tweaked to ensure top-notch performance. If that’s what you’re looking for, then this article is for you.
What Is Motivation?
First, let’s try to gain an understanding of what motivation actually is. Going by the lexical definition, motivation is essentially a set of reasons for acting or behaving in a certain way. In other words, motivation is the driving force behind the things that we do; and don’t do.
It’s widely accepted that motivation is the key to achieving and maintaining success in life. Whether it’s in the sphere of your career, hobbies, lifestyle, studies, or relationships, motivation is an essential driving factor.
Sadly, the opposite is also true, as a lack of motivation can take you down a spiral of slacking, shirking, and self-defeating behavior. If not taken care of in time, this can lead to failure in achieving life goals, depression, and even severe neuropsychological ailments.
So, how can one be motivated in life? According to Taylor’s Motivation Theory, money is the one factor that leads to motivation. However, recent research has proven that motivation can be divided into two categories: extrinsic and intrinsic.
Factors such as money, property, and material success are all related to extrinsic motivation. On the other hand, intrinsic motivation is slightly more complex and seen as inherent to each person.
So, does this mean that we are stuck with the levels of motivation we’re born with?
Neuroscience says no; as per the latest research in the field, motivation can be controlled and improved by controlling the levels of certain neurotransmitters in the brain. Of these, dopamine is the one that plays the most crucial role.
Dopamine And Motivation
In the 21st century, information is easy to find, and this has led to general awareness about a wide range of topics. That’s why we’re sure that most of you have heard of the neurotransmitter dopamine.
Typically associated with pleasure and reward, dopamine is one of the “happy hormones” that give us feelings of joy. Consequently, greater the dopamine levels in a person, greater the motivation to pursue the activity that rewards us with this pleasurable feeling.
However, recent research has succeeded in uncovering the fact that dopamine is not merely the result of activities but also the motivating factor behind it. It’s dopamine that gives one the drive to go after their goals, stick to the path relentlessly, and achieve success.
By essentially egging us on to act towards achieving the desired targets, dopamine allows the brain to garner the energy needed to continue working. This explains why we don’t usually feel tired even after devoting hours to an activity we like to indulge in.
The natural variation in the levels of dopamine among individuals is the primary reason for the difference in levels of motivation and persistence. In general, high achievers exhibit high levels of dopamine and hence motivation, while those with low levels tend to feel lethargic and are unable to get things done.
So, does this essentially translate to the fact that increasing overall dopamine levels in the brain can lead to greater motivation? More in-depth analysis reveals that the actual motivation mechanism is not that straightforward.
The Role Of Glutamate AMPA-Receptors
Dopamine may be the neurotransmitter that plays a significant role in motivation, but the regions of the brain where it’s present also have a vital role. What do we mean by this? Let’s explain the matter in the context of different cerebral regions.
Using Positron Emission Tomography (PET), neuroscientists have revealed that higher levels of dopamine in the Striatum and Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex contribute towards greater motivation. These are brain regions usually associated with motivation and reward functions.
On the other hand, the presence of excess dopamine in the Anterior Insula, a region associated with emotion and risk perception, leads to lower motivation. Thus, it’s not only the levels of dopamine that matter in motivating a person but also the regions and pathways it takes in the brain.
In this context, it’s wise to mention that dopamine is not the only chemical that’s involved in motivation. Particular types of neural receptors, known as Glutamate AMPA receptors, are also responsible for activating the neurons in the brain’s dopamine-reward pathways.
The pathway begins with the stimulation of the Glutamate AMPA receptors, leading the connections to dopamine receptors. This ultimately leads to following the route to the Nucleus Accumbens, the neural structure associated with motivation.
Thus, it can be safely said that it’s the glutamate AMPA receptors that activate the dopamine system. In turn, this leads to a person getting motivated and achieving the drive to follow through with their goals.
Therefore, in conjunction with focusing on dopamine levels for increasing motivation, researchers today also prefer to boost glutamate AMPA receptors. Thankfully, the right nutritional supplements can help to do exactly that.
The Best Nootropics for Motivation
For the remainder of this article we’ll be acquainting you with some of the top supplements to boost motivation. We’re going to be focusing on products from Nootropics Depot, our preferred vendor for nootropics supplements, when going through our top choices.
But why only focus on this online seller? Simply because Nootropics Depot has emerged as the leader in quality nutritional supplements. Their products undergo the strictest of testing procedures and are sourced from authentic and entirely natural sources. They perform multiple rounds of testing both in house and from third party labs to ensure that their consumers are receiving the best product possible.
1. Lion's Mane
The very first supplement that we’d like to recommend is the Lion’s Mane 8:1 Dual Extract. Prepared from the whole fruiting body of the mushroom, this product ensures that you get the full benefits from this interesting fungus. Plus, it’s also available in both capsule and powder form, which makes taking the stuff that much easier.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Lion’s Mane has proven to be highly beneficial in promoting cognitive function. The mushroom contains neuroactive compounds that are neurotrophic. This essentially means that they encourage the growth of nerve cells in the brain by stimulating the Nerve Growth Factor (NGF).
Apart from inducing NGF, Lion’s Mane helps in the production and circulation of dopamine. This way, it works to improve motivation levels and alleviates the symptoms of mental disorders such as depression and anxiety.
The mushroom also works to improve memory and creativity, together with boosting overall executive brain functions. Plus, it can also prove beneficial in keeping devastating conditions such as dementia at bay.
Nootropics Depot Lion’s Mane Mushroom capsules deliver 500mg of this potent ingredient in every dose. With more than 15% Beta-Glucans content, this is one of the better Lion’s Mane supplements in the market. If you want to learn more about the best lion’s mane supplements – check out our recommendations here.
The next item we have for you is the Cordyceps Mushroom capsule. Prepared from whole fruiting bodies, this 10:1 dual extract delivers 250mg of the fungus per dose. Like the Lion’s Mane extract, this one is also available in both powder as well as capsule form and has significant cognitive benefits.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Cordyceps is a great booster of cognitive health and motivation. The compounds in this parasitic fungus enhance the expression of the rate-limiting enzyme tyrosine-hydroxylase. This helps to augment the dopaminergic system, leading to higher levels of motivation.
What’s more, cordyceps also works to increase ATP (Adenosine triphosphate) production, which is the basic unit of cellular energy. Thus, it provides the body with higher energy levels that help you concentrate better and keep motivation levels up.
In addition to the above, cordyceps supplementation also works to help the body and brain utilize oxygen more efficiently. This reduces fatigue, boosts motivation, and provides you with more energy to go on.
As mentioned above, this product is manufactured from whole fruiting body mushrooms and doesn’t have any mycelium or grain fillers. This delivers a potent beta-glucans content of above 20%, along with ample doses of cordycepin, the major bioactive compound in the fungus. If you’re looking for more of our favorite Cordyceps supplements you can check them out here.
3. Rhodiola Rosea
Typically found in the higher altitudes of the arctic, such as Siberia, this adaptogenic herb has powerful cognitive effects. This product contains 500mg of the herb in every serving and delivers a minimum of 3% Rosavins with 1% Salidrosides.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Rhodiola Rosea has been proven to increase the levels of dopamine in the brain, thus boosting the motivation pathways. It also positively impacts the levels of other beneficial neurotransmitters, such as serotonin and acetylcholine.
The herb achieves this effect by acting as an inhibitor for the MAO enzymes that generally break down dopamine and other neurotransmitters. This way, it works to improve motivation levels, and also gives you an energy boost.
Rhodiola works as a stress reliever by reducing the levels of cortisol. Plus, it also works to fortify the central nervous system, provide mental clarity, and even helps in the growth of new nerve cells.
Overall, it can be said that if you’re suffering from low motivation and fatigue, then Rhodiola Rosea supplementation is one of the most effective solutions available.
L-Tyrosine capsules are used to supplement the amino acid Tyrosine. L-Tyrosine from Nootropics Depot delivers 500mg of the compound with every capsule, which means a single pill a day is enough to keep you motivated.
Why Do We Recommend It?
When our brains are continuously active for long periods of time, they rapidly burn through catecholamines. This leads to a depletion of the body’s natural Tyrosine levels, which leaves you feeling demotivated and fatigued.
That’s where L-Tyrosine supplementation comes in. Since this compound acts as a precursor for several neurotransmitters, including dopamine, it boosts the brain’s motivational pathways. This provides you with greater energy to perform.
Apart from this, L-Tyrosine also works to boost memory and cognitive performance, improve learning speeds, and counter the effects of sleep deprivation. Plus, it also works to suppress stress hormones such as cortisol.
On top of everything, L-Tyrosine also helps to enhance the levels of melanin in the body. Melanin helps cognition by removing toxins from the brain, thus cleansing it for better performance.
Noopept is an effective combination of amino acids, such as glycine, proline, and a protective phenylacetyl group. Nootropics Depot Noopept comes in 10mg and 30mg strengths, and jars of 30 and 90 capsules.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Noopept has its origins in Russia, and chemically, it is a dipeptide analog of Piracetam. Extremely neuroprotective in nature, the compound has shown highly positive effects in treating neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s.
Noopept also works to enhance NGF and BDNF expression, along with boosting the levels of dopamine as well as serotonin. Thus, it helps to enhance motivation and puts you into a much better mood.
On top of that, Noopept also enhances alpha and beta brain wave activity. This leads you to become calmer and more creative. At the same time, it also improves the ability to make better decisions.
Noopept is also great for boosting long and short-term memory and allows you to focus on the task at hand with greater clarity. It also increases oxygen flow to the brain, clearing the way for the dopaminergic paths.
This is a patented theacrine supplement that’s identical to caffeine but has none of it’s side-effects such as crashes and jitters. An isolated purine alkaloid found primarily in Kucha Tea leaf, TeaCrine has proven beneficial in uplifting mood, enhancing motivation, and increasing energy and focus.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Similar to caffeine, TeaCrine works by inhibiting adenosine and boosting the levels of dopamine. Since adenosine is a precursor to the feeling of tiredness, TeaCrine helps to delay the onset of fatigue.
At the same time, heightened levels of dopamine receptors (D1 and D2) help to improve motivation levels. TeaCrine also delivers all the wakeful effects of caffeine and works to keep you alert and focused.
Apart from the cognitive benefits, this supplement also has antioxidant properties and protects the body against oxidative stress. Plus, it has anti-inflammatory properties and prevents liver damage.
If you have the habit of taking caffeine to maintain wakefulness, we recommend pairing it with TeaCrine. The two work to complement each other, as caffeine helps enhance the bioavailability of TeaCrine and boost its positive effects.
Nootropics Depot TeaCrine is available in 100mg capsule and powder form and can be paired with other supplements such as L-Tyrosine and Dynamine, which is the next product on our list.
This is another patented product that contains methylliberine as the major component. It’s a pure alkaloid that’s known for improving energy levels, boosting motivation, and enhancing cognition levels.
Why Do We Recommend It?
Dynamine works by preventing adenosine from binding to neuronal-receptors in the brain. This way, it helps prevent feelings of sleepiness and fatigue, providing the body with the energy to continue working.
In addition, it also inhibits the reuptake of dopamine by blocking proteins that act as transporters of the neurotransmitter. That’s how Dynamine helps to boost motivation levels and makes you feel more focused.
What’s more, Dynamine also works to increase dopamine receptors, thus reinforcing the dopaminergic pathways. Combined with the adenosine-preventive effects, this leads to increased energy and improved cognition.
Dynamine is available in both capsule and powder form, and delivers 100mg of the supplement per serving. It can also be coupled with other supplements such as TeaCrine, which enhance its effects and boost the overall efficacy.
As they say, motivation is a powerful driving force, and helps to boost our levels of productivity. With the right supplements, it’s possible to improve our normal motivation levels and create a better life.
However, the trouble is that most supplements for motivation that are available in the market aren’t very effective. Either they use low-grade ingredients, or don’t have the proper formulation or components to improve your motivation levels.
Thankfully, our recommended products from Nootropics Depot deliver the best results when utilized properly. This means that by stacking some of these nootropics together, these products can help to boost your motivation levels by a significant margin.
That being said, we still recommend you to undertake extensive research before buying a nutritional supplement for motivation. That way, you’ll be sure to get the best products for the goals that you’re looking to achieve.