Secret #37 Think Positively About Aging
“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.” ― Sophia Loren
Really interesting retirement happiness research from Becca Levy, an associate professor of epidemiology and psychology at Yale University, shows that Sophia Loren was onto something.
Levy has found that when older adults think of getting old as a positive experience — being about wisdom, self-realization and satisfaction — then they:
- Function at a higher level
- Live 7.5 years longer
- Are more likely to eat well, exercise and avoid vice
Find Insight as You Age
What’s so great about aging? Good question.
Our society prizes youth and beauty above all.
Messages about aging tend to emphasize the negative aspects.
But, like fine wine, people should get better as they age. Experience, combined with maturity, gives older people great insight.
Older people are more in touch with spirituality and prioritize depth in their life. By following a simple, healthy lifestyle you can preserve your health and energy your whole life.
Add Years to Your Life
Research shows that how you perceive aging affects how long you will live. In a study of 660 people, those with more positive perceptions of their own aging lived an average of 7.5 years longer.
This effect remained after other factors such as age, gender, income, loneliness, and health status were controlled.
- Be kind to your skin. Your skin is your body’s largest organ . …
- Exercise. …
- Mind your diet. …
- Mental health matters. …
- Stay physically active. …
- Lower your stress. …
- Quit smoking and decrease alcohol consumption. …
- Get enough sleep.
Probably one of the main problems with getting old is stress.
The biggest way to age gracefully? Put a stop to all that stress! I know, it’s easier said than done. We all face plenty of stressors and overwhelm in our lives.
Unfortunately, stress and strain cause us to age. A furrowed brow may become a wrinkle. Smoking, drinking and other unhealthy ways to cope with stress also take a heavy toll.
Stress has many negative effects on our health too—higher blood pressure, poor sleep, weight gain and loss. Fortunately, you can fight stress by adopting healthy habits.
Drink water, exercise, maintain good dental hygiene and preventative medicine to combat stress. Keep your emotional habits healthy too by practicing gratitude, self-care, keeping your perspective and learning to let go.
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