A Positive Outlook Extends Lifespan

I define it loosely as the ability to bounce back from stress. Many scientists view this solely as biological stress. But many of us who care for older patients see adaptive competence as psychologically critical as well.

You don't get to be 109 without life hurling a few curveballs at you, and Reichert has had more than her share: bereavement, gender discrimination, medical issues. And after each, she dusts herself off and moves on.


My colleague Becca Levy, a professor of epidemiology and psychology at the Yale School of Public Health, has studied the longevity of people in their 50s as a function of their perceptions about aging.

She asked if they agreed with statements like, "Things keep getting worse as I get older," and, "As you get older you are less useful." Even after she controlled for their medical conditions, subjects who agreed with ideas like these died on average 7 1/2 years sooner than their glass-half-full counterparts.


Controlling for other factors, having a positive attitude about life and progressing forward despite setbacks extends one's lifespan.

Folksonomies: cognitive behavioral therapy quality of life life span

/health and fitness/disorders/mental disorder/panic and anxiety (0.504275)
/art and entertainment/dance (0.500333)
/business and industrial (0.358543)

Extends Lifespan Controlling (0.964755 (positive:0.403984)), colleague Becca Levy (0.752957 (neutral:0.000000)), older patients (0.449448 (positive:0.238630)), positive attitude (0.417001 (positive:0.492916)), adaptive competence (0.415994 (positive:0.238630)), biological stress (0.412570 (negative:-0.639699)), gender discrimination (0.378651 (negative:-0.599038)), glass-half-full counterparts (0.376460 (neutral:0.000000)), Yale School (0.351786 (neutral:0.000000)), medical issues (0.346584 (negative:-0.441676)), Public Health (0.341261 (neutral:0.000000)), medical conditions (0.328195 (negative:-0.267786))

Becca Levy:Person (0.830425 (negative:-0.267786)), Reichert:Person (0.643469 (negative:-0.354156)), Yale School of Public Health:Organization (0.548730 (neutral:0.000000)), professor:JobTitle (0.412521 (neutral:0.000000)), 2 years:Quantity (0.412521 (neutral:0.000000))

Epidemiology (0.941575): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Death (0.841642): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Biology (0.809325): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Psychology (0.743197): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Medicine (0.708199): dbpedia | freebase
Gender (0.650937): dbpedia | freebase
Life (0.648426): dbpedia | freebase
Discrimination (0.636417): dbpedia | freebase

 Want To Live To 100? Try To Bounce Back From Stress
Electronic/World Wide Web>Blog:  Lachs, Mark (April 11, 2011), Want To Live To 100? Try To Bounce Back From Stress, NPR, Retrieved on 2011-04-15
  • Source Material [www.npr.org]
  • Folksonomies: cognitive behavioral therapy quality of life


    15 APR 2011

     Cognitively Improving the Quality of Life

    Memes concerning the use of meditation and other forms of consciousness control to improve our health physically and mentally.