Loretta Breuning: The Brain Science of Positivity TPS239

Loretta Breuning, PhD, is Professor Emerita of Management at California State University, East Bay and the author of The Science of Positivity and Habits of a Happy Brain. She’s Founder of the Inner Mammal Institute, which offers a wide range of resources that help you build power over your mammalian brain chemistry.


  • Loretta tells us how she got into the work she does.
  • Animals have the same brain chemistry as humans.
  • We talk about why negativity makes people feel good.
  • As long as I see and recognize danger, I can feel safe and feel good.
  • Herds bond by focusing on a common energy.
  • We talk about how to feel good in business.
  • Loretta explains why people obsess about social comparison.
  • When you approach a reward, your brain releases dopamine. But once you get your reward, the brain focuses on the next possible reward.
  • It’s important to understand why the brain creates a sense of urgency when there is no reason to.
  • The difference between humans and animals is that we have the ability to perceive the future.
  • Focus on satisfaction with your own skills.
  • Because we know we are going to die, we perceive a threat.
  • You have to trick yourself into feeling safe.
  • We distract ourselves in order to deal with our fear of death.
  • When you feel safe, your brain actually reaches out to find possible future threats.
  • We often learn our fears when we are young from those around us.
  • When we are alone, that feels threatening.
  • Our brain is constantly asking, “What’s my next best step.”


Loretta’s site: www.innermammalinstitue.org