According to a new study, your attitude about life may not only help you live longer, it may also help you enjoy life more. Researchers at the University of Illinois, found two years ago that optimists live longer than pessimists. Now, the same group of researchers looked to see if one's outlook on life affects their quality of life.
In the 1970s, participants were assessed using a personality test. Using a scale, researchers determined who was optimistic, pessimistic or a mixture of both. The same group of 400 patients were questioned 35 years later. This time the participants were questioned about their physical functioning, role limitations, bodily pain, general health perception, vitality, social functioning, emotional and mental health.
Researchers observe that pessimists scored below optimists on quality of life assessments. The pessimists also scored lower than the national average on most of the questions. Overall, pessimists reported poorer physical and mental functioning.
Lead researcher Toshihiko Maruta, M.D., says, "The wellness of being is not just physical, but attitudinal. How you perceive what goes on around you and how you interpret it may have an impact on your longevity, and it could affect the quality of your later years."