Prescription for a long life: Work hard. Don't retire early.
Just one example ...
Myth No. 1. Thinking happy thoughts reduces stress and leads to a longer life.
Reality:In the study, children whose parents described them as "extraordinarily cheerful and optimistic," "never sees the dark side" or "never worries" were less likely to live to an old age. This is one of "the biggest bombshells of the project," the researchers write.
"We keep hearing this advice to cheer up and stay happy because it will keep you healthy," Friedman says. "We just disagree with that after seeing the results of the study."
The participants who lived long, happy lives "were not cynical rebels and loners" but accomplished people who were satisfied with their lives. Many knew that worrying is sometimes a good thing. The authors also looked at a study of Medicare patients that found that "neuroticism was health-protective."
Answer by samurai_chica at 7:12 PM on Mar. 1, 2011
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