Want to live longer? Then cheer up, say scientists

From Techyville

Positive thinkers are more likely to be able to continue with daily tasks later into their lives than those who think negatively.

Age ain’t nothing but a number as the old expression goes, and it turns out that might just be the truth. New research indicates that you truly are only as old as you feel. Maintaining a good spirit puts older people at a greater advantage for living long and happy lives.  On the other hand, being sad, angry, or down and not trying to fix it can lead to an early grave.

The study shows that people with positive outlooks on aging do not age as quickly as others. The data shows that older people who do not focus on the numerical value of their age are over 40 percent more likely to recover from severe disabilities than those who get hung up on age. There are other benefits as well.  Positive thinkers are more likely to be able to continue with daily tasks later into their lives than those who think negatively. While a lot of people end up requiring assistance with bathing and dressing, our optimists are able to do those things for themselves.

A lot of the past research on how attitude effects one’s lifespan has focused on how negativity can shorten one’s life. This new research on positivity creates a more solid foundation to how happiness can extend your life and also improve the quality of your existence.

Tara L. Stewart, PhD, who is an assistant professor of psychology at Idaho State University says, ““It’s not just about reducing the losses associated with aging, but also about making gains in one’s health or disability status and regaining what might have been lost. These people with positive stereotypes about aging experienced health gains and better recovery, not just a reduction of health losses.”

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