Does happiness lead to a longer life? I think so. Unhappiness, like stress, worry, fear, depression and anxiety can throw our bodily systems out of sync just like a misfiring spark plug can make our car motors run poorly. Studies have found that healthy people who are happy will live longer than healthy people who are unhappy but an unhealthy person who is happy won’t necessarily recover because of the happiness. We will stay healthier if you are happy and thus live longer because of it. Being happy while We are unhealthy may lead to a more satisfying life but not a longer life. The effect from being happy can make as much difference in longevity as whether we smoke or not.
Numerous studies have shown how negative emotions can harm the body. Chronic stress or fear sustained over time can lead to wear and tear injuries to our bodies just as stress and abuse lead to premature failure of a motor or other piece of machinery. The premature wearing on the body can lead to heart disease, stroke, diabetes and other illnesses. Anger and anxiety, when at a chronic level can even disrupt the electrical functions of the heart leading to increased inflammation and atherosclerosis.
When we are optimistic we can expect a fifty percent improvement in heart health over those who are pessimistic When we expect good things to happen, rather than bad and we feel that our actions account for the good we receive, we feel that we control things and not that things are randomly happening to us. The more we feel we don’t control our own destiny the more unhappy we generally feel.
If happy people live longer, and by that I assume better or why would we want to live longer, how can we be happier? We become happy by deciding to be happy, by trying to see the positive in every situation and refusing to be negative about anything. We are the authors of our own happiness. It may be nice to have lots of money, have a desirable and attractive partner, have the perfect career or the perfect retirement, but they do not guarantee happiness. Happiness comes from within, it’s a way of thinking, an attitude, a way of life. There are people who have very little in worldly possessions that are happier than many of the wealthy. It is all about what are our priorities, what we see as being important to us, what makes our life worth living and are we fulfilling your purpose here.
So if we want to be happy we must feel that we have a purpose, feel that we have a measure of control in our life, feel that we are making a difference, and have a connection with other people. We could be raising a grandchild that has no one else or we could be helping hundreds of people by providing them jobs, we could be just supporting your own family but we are doing something worthwhile. We know that life is better for someone else because of us.
So is the glass half full or half empty, it is our choice, we have the power. How full our glass is also determines how full people in out spear of influence see their glasses. We will not change everyone but we will make a difference. The same is true if we see the glass half empty. I choose to see mine three-quarters full.
Thanks for visiting, you are always welcome here. May you and yours have a healthy and happy day. David Johnson