A Negative Attitude About Aging Is a Predictor of Poor Health

New research suggests that when we have a positive attitude about growing older, we’re much more resilient and less affected by the stress of everyday life.

What's the Shame in Aging? Apparently a Lot

The study, published in the Journals of Gerontology, invited 43 participants between the ages of 60-96 years old (39 of which were women) to keep a diary for 380 days. In it, participants were asked to record their everyday thoughts and experiences of aging.

The results were crystal clear.

Participants who reported feeling happy and lively as they aged, were less likely to be thrown off course by everyday hurdles, such as being in a disagreement with a friend or family member, or other home and health-related stressors. They also reported consistent levels of stress throughout the study period. Participants with a negative outlook on aging reported higher levels of psychological stress when confronted with similar everyday obstacles.

Dr. Jacqueline Simon Gunn, clinical psychologist and frequent contributor to Lifetime Daily, recently wrote about this very same subject, noting that, “Our thoughts and mood are intimately connected. When we’re loaded with negative thoughts, it can cause psychological distress, even depression and anxiety. It can also affect our physical health.”

To cultivate a more positive attitude, Gunn suggests using positive affirmations or mantras to shift your attitude and mood or pursuing goals that have personal significance, citing volunteer work and community service as activities that many people find fulfilling.

All of this adds to growing evidence that embracing our age and living with intention can have a positive impact on our health. In fact, our quality of life depends on it.

About the Writer

Liane Walker

Liane Walker is Lifetime Daily's Deputy Editor.

Share this Article

Related Articles

Get your FREE eBook

Enter your email address to receive this eBook. Enjoy and thanks for downloading!

Every week, you’ll also receive the best healthy living advice for active aging.

Error: Please enter a valid email address

Error: Invalid email

Error: Please enter your first name

Error: Please enter your last name

Error: Please enter a username

Error: Please enter a password

Error: Please confirm your password

Error: Password and password confirmation do not match

[addthis tool="addthis_relatedposts_inline"]