Are you a Debbie Downer?
Or do you go around humming “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” all the time?
And which do you think is better for your health – a negative attitude or a positive one?
Yep, it should be obvious. And it’s also true. Studies show that optimism is good for our physical and mental health, as well as our longevity.
One group of researchers reported “older individuals with more positive self-perceptions of aging… lived 7.5 years longer than those with less positive self-perceptions of aging.”
Another found that a positive outlook boosts heart health, even among people with a family history of heart disease.
People with a positive outlook live longer, have fewer heart attacks, and struggle less with depression.
The positive news about all this, even for those with a grumpy disposition?
Exercise helps. Simply by moving our bodies, we put ourselves in a better mood. And by maintaining strength, agility and endurance, we build upon our happiness every day. So, go for a walk, ride a bike, lift weights, run, swim, hike, practice yoga, dance – whatever you like.
Smile and laugh, even if you’re faking it – studies show we get the same physical benefits by just going through the motions.
Write down or say something you’re grateful for every day.
Call or see a friend or loved one.
Let go of what you can’t control – like traffic, past mistakes, and other people.