If you want to boost longevity, you need to adopt a pro-aging mindset – and understand that fun is a big key to living a longer life. Read on…
There’s a general sense that once we reach a certain age, we need to start behaving ourselves.
But when you take a look at the longest-living people in the world, you find a very different story.
These healthy older folks aren’t interested in living an ascetic life. They want to enjoy their existence to the fullest. They’re not afraid to be adventurous and enjoy themselves. They have a pro-aging mindset and adopt a fun attitude to growing older.
A few of the many research studies I include in my book, explain the important of embracing a pro-aging mindset – where you regularly indulge in playfulness and fun.
I have a chapter in Life is Long called “Avoid Groaning Older” – which shares an interesting study about how your attitude towards aging affects how you age.
According to research from Becca R. Levy, PhD, and her associates at Yale University, adults with positive attitudes about aging lived more than seven years longer than their Negative Nelly peers.
According to these researchers, self- perceptions about aging had a greater impact on a person’s life span than did the usual suspects: gender, socioeconomic status, loneliness levels, functional health, blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, or smoking status.
Basically, your self-perception about aging can become a self-fulling prophecy.
It’s your choice:
1. Negative self-perceptions about aging = diminished life expectancy.
2. Positive self-perceptions about aging = prolonged life expectancy.
I’m picking choice #2 – and I’m here today to encourage you to embrace a pro-aging mindset too!
Longevity researchers noticed that there are several “Blue Zones” around the world – where people tend to live far longer than everywhere else.
At first, researchers believed that this Blue Zone secret fountain of youth was “physical activity.”
Then later… researchers probed the importance of diet and concluded that these centenarians were living longer because they were focusing on eating plants – not meat.
No matter which community these researchers visited in these Blue Zones – and no matter what these Blue Zone people ate – or how active they were – healthy, older Blue Zone folks all seemed to share one particular thing in common…
Lately there’s been a lot of longevity research which shows that the thoughts people think can affect the state of their bodies directly.
For example, high levels of stressful thinking can lead to weight gain, hair loss, and high blood pressure.
As it turns out, the people living in those Blue Zone areas consistently said they had less stress in their lives.
Happy seniors in these communities were living their lives replete with fun and adventure. They also reported enjoying close bonds with family and loving bonds with friends – who they continued to enjoy lots of fun times with! Yep! Once again – the importance of embracing fun came up as essential to these Blue Zone folks!
There is a connection between aging well and embracing a pro-aging mindset – by not thinking that growing old must mean a loss of enjoyment of life.
A pro-aging mindset means no matter how old you are you’re still committed to indulging in fun, adventure, silliness, feistiness.
If you want to live longer, you need to enjoy yourself more – so your body gets the message that you want to continue living.
Basically, you need to maintain a pro-aging mindset and believe that the best is yet to come!
Researchers have tracked how people’s bodies respond to healthy social interactions. They found that people who have lower cortisol levels also have better blood sugar control.
Keeping both of these in check is essential – since these markers are proxies for longevity. Basically, when fasting blood glucose levels rise higher, people age faster.
Rarely does an animal in a lab with perfect blood sugar control die. Instead, it goes hand-in-glove with chemical processes in their bloodstream.
Life is serious, right? Partly it is. But partly, fun is at the center of everything we do.
For example: Making money isn’t just for practical reasons. It’s also so we can enjoy ourselves.
When you’re enjoying yourself, there’s nowhere else to go. That could be why it seems to have such a profound effect on longevity.
Escaping the rat race and letting your hair down might be just the thing you need for longer life. People in these Blue Zones aren’t afraid to stay up late and enjoy themselves on the weekend.
You should follow their leads. Make sure you’re having enough fun in your life – and you’ll be more likely experience more years in your life!