Several studies that have been performed regarding people who are older, who have lived far beyond the norm in the United States, indicate that attitude seems to play an important role. There probably isn’t anything like a “longevity personality.” Living to the ripe old age of 100 seems to happen to selfish, cantankerous people as often as it does to those who are quiet and kind. But there does seem to be a common thread, and it is a sense of self-sufficiency.
The oldest of our senior citizens all seem to have a strong attachment to freedom and independence. They tend to dislike and avoid constraints and they value their autonomy highly. What’s more, most of these old-timers are also people who enjoy life. They have a high degree of realistic optimism, a definite sense of humor, and they respond to simple pleasures, seeing beauty where others only see ugliness.
Today’s senior citizens are also extremely adaptable and resilient. Some of them had been hit hard by the Great Depression, but they recovered to build new futures. And while many of them cherished childhood memories, all of them preferred living in the present with its many changes.
In a nutshell, these studies found that attitude seemed to outweigh physical characteristics and what these folks thought and felt was more important than what they ate or how long their parents had lived. Ultimately, what they found was that these efficacious older folks got an A when it came with aging with a positive attitude.
So, if you want to live a long, happy life, consider keeping track of your attitude as well as counting your calories and monitoring your cholesterol.