Be positive… Live longer?!?

Yesterday, we covered the main idea from Shawn Achor’s The Happiness Advantage: that being happy is an indispensable ingredient of our success.   

The book is packed with interesting research and evidence that back up Shawn’s assertion.   

One longitudinal study of happiness was done by reviewing the diary entries of 180 Catholic nuns who were asked to write down their thoughts in an autobiographical journal.  More than fifty years later, a clever group of researchers coded the entries for emotional content.  The nuns whose journal entries had more strongly positive content lived nearly ten years longer that those nuns whose entries were negative or neutral.  Amazingly, 90% of the happiest quartile of nuns were alive at 85, versus only 34% of the least happy quartile. 

Shawn then raises the question: “Well, that’s great for the happy people, Shawn, but what about the rest of us??” 

We will cover that topic tomorrow. 

Reflection:  Does it make sense to me that happiness correlates to better health?   

Action: What is a small, intentional action we could take today to bring some joy into our lives? 

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