Optimism and positive thinking aren’t just good for the soul, they’re good for the body, too. Studies show that optimism can increase your longevity–meaning you’ll live a lot longer if the glass is half full. Wondering how to be optimistic? Read on, girl!
A new set of research says that optimism actually prevent strokes, and positive thinking can actually regulate your immune system to keep you healthy. (That’s good news especially now that it’s allergy and sinus season!)
Another bonus? Optimism can decrease your body’s production of the stress hormone cortisol, which also can cause you to gain weight–especially around your belly. Happiness can up your shot at a hard stomach!
But it’s not just positive thinking that keeps you healthy. Studies show it’s actually optimism combined with a sense of purpose that keeps people the healthiest, so it’s super important to have goals and direction. Even if your goal is just to smile at your crush in the hall or making the field hockey team or something loftier, like trying out for American Idol or getting into your first choice college, working towards it will keep you not only sane, but also in good shape.
But let’s face it: being optimistic can be really hard sometimes. How are you supposed to stay positive when it can be so easy to be negative?! Here are a few tips: When you’re getting into something new, whether it’s a relationship, a job, a new school or whatever, stop focusing on the worst that could happen. Instead, think about all of the great things that could happen and focus on those. A lot of times people shy away from new experiences because they’re so worried about the bad stuff that they can’t even imagine the good stuff. That’s a great way to miss out on new and fun things, which is pretty lame.
You should also stop focusing on your past so much. Maybe bad things happened to you with guys, but that doesn’t mean that in the future, every guy is going to screw you over. You need to learn to let go of the bad stuff from your past and start thinking about starting over new in the future.
Being optimistic is all about focusing on the positive things in your life. When something bad happens, you could let it take over and totally bum you out, or you could consider the good things you still have and choose to focus on those instead. What do you think would make you happier?
When you feel yourself getting super negative, try saying a positive affirmation. It could be anything from “anything is possible” to “I choose to be happy over being sad.” Whatever works for you! Write it down a bunch of times, say it out loud alone in your room or just think about it – and repeat it until you start to believe it.
Being more optimistic may take some time – it’s not going to happen overnight – but the effort you’ll put into it is worth it. Not only will it help you live longer, but it will also make you happier. What could be better than that?!
Do you physically feel better when you’re happier? Do you think optimism plays a role in longevity? Do you have tips to increase your own positive thinking? Tell us in the comments!