If you’ve ever wondered whether positive people have a leg up on the curmudgeons of the world, the answer is a resounding, YES!
In fact, a large study, held over a thirty-year period, found that the most optimistic men and women demonstrated, on average, an 11-15% longer lifespan, and had 50-70% greater odds of reaching 85 years old compared to the least optimistic group.
Those are some pretty impressive numbers.
Do you feel like you want to start smiling more, now?
It’s important to note that having a positive attitude doesn’t mean you see nothing but puppies, sunshine, and rainbows at every turn. Optimistic people experience a wide range of emotions, just like anybody else. They may, however, be better able to rebound from obstacles and more effectively regulate their emotions and behaviors. These abilities can positively affect everything from their sleep to their gut health, to their exercise capacity, and more.
Remember the Gut-Brain Connection?
As we shared in a previous blog post, your brain contains about 100 billion neurons that form a “communication highway” between your brain and your gut. Your emotions, stress levels, memory, immune function, pain perception, mood, and more are all affected by this gut-brain highway. So we can draw the conclusion that when optimistic people send happy thoughts through their brain, those thoughts travel the gut-brain highway and can positively influence gut health. Since good gut health impacts your overall health and well-being, this is a huge win for Team Suzy Sunshine.
What If You’re Not Naturally Positive?
If you don’t classify yourself as positive, don’t worry. It’s not at all necessary to wave the white flag and give up on having a long life.
The study also found that optimistic people tend to have healthier habits, like a regular exercise plan. They also were less likely to smoke. Both of these factors, of course, could contribute to extended lifespan.
While these habits may be more easily put into place for positive people, there’s no reason any person — positive or not — couldn’t also quit smoking and engage in more activity.
However, if you like the idea of becoming more positive, here are a few ways you can do that:
- Find reasons to be happy
They’re everywhere, and they don’t need to be monumental to make an impact. It could be as simple as noticing a cute kitten, enjoying the sunrise, or savoring a healthy, home cooked meal. Taking time to acknowledge something that gives you joy instead of focusing on what bothers or frustrates you, and doing this all throughout the day, is a great step toward becoming more positive and optimistic.
- Express gratitude
Is your bed comfortable? Did you have a great conversation with a friend? Were you extra productive at work? Feel gratitude for those things or experiences and say, “thank you,” even if it’s not out loud. You may also try keeping a gratitude journal near your bed and writing down 3-5 things you’re thankful for before your head hits the pillow. It will put you in a positive state of mind before you drift off to sleep.
- Be nice to yourself
If you don’t identify as positive, it’s quite possible you speak rather harshly to yourself. Especially when it comes to your health. Instead of looking in the mirror and saying, “I’m too fat,” or “I’m always sick,” try, “I prioritize my wellness and I’m getting healthier every day.” That simple reframe can take a negative thought spiral and completely turn it around into something positive, inspirational, and actionable.
Back To Your Gut
As you’re finding reasons to be happy, expressing gratitude, and being nicer to yourself, you can simultaneously work on healing your gut, which, of course, impacts your mood.
You can start by rebalancing your gut microbiota (introducing more good gut bacteria than bad), nourishing and strengthening the gut lining, and enhancing your immune system function through regular use of NatureM.D. RevBiotics.
RevBiotics are a powerful blend of premium probiotics, herbal prebiotics, and botanical superfoods designed to nourish your gut for refreshed energy, cleaner digestion, improved mental clarity, and a revved-up mood. They’re a great choice for enhancing that gut-brain communication highway and helping you achieve great health… whether you’re a Positive Paul or not.
To your health and happiness…
Your NatureM.D. Wellness Team