Researchers Say Optimists May Live Longer - NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth

Researchers Say Optimists May Live Longer

Findings from the Brookings Institute tracked thousands of people starting in 1968

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    Researchers Say Optimists May Live Longer

    A newly-published paper describes why optimists may live longer. A 90-year-old Irving residents says she's living proof. (Published Friday, May 18, 2018)

    Do you consider yourself a glass half empty or glass half full kind of person?

    More research is out that backs up the theory optimistic people live longer. 

    Researchers at the Brookings Institution cite in this paper, a study that started to track thousands of people in 1968 and found that by 2015, almost 75 percent of pessimists had died, compared to 68 percent of optimists.

    They think optimists have lived longer because they are better educated, earn greater incomes and are free from mental or physical work limitations.

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    Ora Reid, a resident at The Villages on MacArthur in Irving, said optimism is her secret to reaching age 90.

    Every day she passes out the mail and starts conversations with her neighbors because she said making them happy makes her happy and helps her have a positive attitude.

    "Happiness can really keep you going, because if I hadn't been happy all these years, I would have never made it for 90 years," said Reid, who also won the title of Miss Mature Irving 2015.

    She said she has always had a hopeful outlook about the things that have happened in her life.

    From the death of her mother when she was born to to joining the Navy when she was 21.

    "I learned this while I was in the Navy. You've got to believe in yourself that you can do it. So that's what I do. Sometimes I don't make it, well, I just start over and try again," Reid said.

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