Sunday 23 October 2016

Pessimists Live Longer than Optimists

A study from 2013 says that "Pessimists Live Longer than Optimists".  The optimist in me says "Glad to see that there is something going right for my Pessimistic peers", while the pessimist in me says "Yeah, but we all end up dead in the end."

Julie Norem’s 2001 book “The Positive Power of Negative Thinking” advocates for “defensive pessimism,” in which people envision the absolute worst outcomes, and prepare accordingly.

"If someone’s not smiling, we think not just that there’s something wrong, but that there’s something wrong with them. Further, our insistence on happiness erodes our ability to cope when things get really bad . . . as they inevitably will, when we’re so infected with HappyThink that we buy too much, save too little, marry too soon, try to run 26.2 miles on 10 miles of training." said Norem in the Boston Globe interview referenced below.

A study published in the journal Psychology and Aging said “Our findings revealed that being overly optimistic in predicting a better future was associated with a greater risk of disability and death within the following decade,” said its lead author, Frieder R. Lang of the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg in Germany.

This is where Enriching Psychology™ strengths shine through... it's about understanding the gaps, seeing the roadblocks, overcoming the hurdles in a strong, persistent... and dare I say... hopeful, optimistic way that leads to the best outcomes.