This Year, Try a Resolution You Can Live With

by Dr. Stephen Sinatra
Filed Under: General Health
Last Reviewed 02/06/2014

Having a positive attitude can help you lead a longer life!Here’s a message I posted several years ago, which definitely bears repeating…

Now that the New Year is here, I know a lot of people have made resolutions—some kept, and some already broken. Well, here’s a resolution you can not only keep, but can easily live with all year long—to be more optimistic, since optimism is the key to health and life.

Let me tell you a story about just how powerful optimism can be… 
 
Several years ago at one of my subscriber seminars, I was uplifted to a state of awe by the collective appearance of the audience. This group of more than 200 mostly senior citizens radiated health, vigor, and an absolutely contagious positivity.

Many had significant medical problems. Yet, what a difference between them and most people their age. Here were individuals hungry for knowledge, even down to the nitty-gritty of how many milligrams of vitamin X to take and when. Here were people learning how to be healthier so they could grab more of life, and not just passively waiting for the next prescription from their doctors.

One gentleman got up to the microphone and said he was 86, had aortic dysfunction, arrhythmia, and was somewhat hard of hearing. He had had a quadruple bypass and a knee replacement.“I want to make plans for the next 30 years,” he said. “My cup is half full and I want to make it fuller.”

“Wow!” I thought. “Now that’s a healing attitude.” Somebody else in his shoes would think their cup was half-empty and draining. But not him—and not the others in that room of exceptional people.

Thinking positively can help you live longer…

I was reminded of a study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology that made national headlines several years ago. Researchers analyzed the medical histories and length of life of some 200 nuns who had compiled handwritten autobiographies during the 1930s, when they were in their early 20s.

A careful search for such key words as “happy,” “joy,” “love,” “hopeful,” and “contentment” revealed that the nuns who expressed more positive emotions lived as much as 10 years longer than those expressing fewer positive emotions. The findings are in keeping with other studies showing that people who are more positive seem to live longer than those who are more pessimistic.

After observing thousands of patients, I can assure you that attitude is the key to life. You can choose to be depressed and live with the biochemistry that depression creates in your body, or choose to be optimistic, find purpose in life, and live with the biochemistry that optimism creates. Which do you think makes you healthier?
 
So this year—instead of resolving to lose 20 pounds by February—commit to fostering a positive attitude and concentrating on optimistic thoughts rather than getting bogged down in the negative.

Now it’s your turn: Are you an optimist?

You May Also Be Interested In:

Related Articles & Categories
Enjoy What You've Just Read?

Get it delivered to your inbox! Signup for E-News and you'll get great content like you've just read along with other great tips and guides from Dr. Sinatra!

blog comments powered by Disqus