Train Your Brain

This brief article in Word for Today highlighted some fantastic facts about positive thinking and its health benefits.
“A study conducted in the Netherlands found that optimistic people have healthier hearts than those who are grumpy. Self-described optimists died of cardiovascular disease at a lower rate than those of pessimists.
Dr Becca Levy of Yale University conducted a study which concluded that ‘a positive attitude towards ageing was greater than physiological measures such as low blood pressure and cholesterol,’ each of which is believed to add a maximum of four years to a person’s life.
The same study discovered that optimistic people live longer than people who constantly worry and that a positive attitude can add more years to life than exercising or refraining from smoking.
Additionally upholding the mind-body connection, a 2005 Associated Press article reported, ‘New research suggests that once Alzheimer’s disease robs someone of the ability to expect that a proven painkiller will help them, it doesn’t work nearly as well.’ Isn’t that remarkable?
When people are able to think painkillers work, the medicines seem to help. Our minds are extraordinary!
The Bible says, ‘The joy of the Lord is your strength.’ And that’s not just spiritual strength but physical, mental, and emotional strength. If you want to have a healthy life, you must have a healthy mind, and that starts with thinking positively instead of negatively. So, train your brain.”
There is more.
But much more evidence demonstrates the importance of a positive mindset for our health. My mum lived to the ripe old age of 99 and had the most amazing positive outlook on life.

I never heard her complain or moan about anything or anyone, speak badly about anyone, or be angry or negative. She just accepted her situation with grace, even though, in her final years, she couldn’t get out of the house and had painful knees.
The day before she passed away peacefully in her sleep, she was smiling and laughing at something funny on the TV. She walked unaided between rooms and waved Julie and me off through the window with a huge smile. The next day, she was gone.
What a beautiful life she lived. She always wanted the best for everyone and wanted them to be happy. When those around her were happy, she was happy. Her positive attitude greatly impacted the people around her as well as her health and long life.
Evidence to prove how powerful a positive mindset is.
Positive thinking has been extensively studied for its impact on health and well-being. Here are some critical pieces of evidence demonstrating the health benefits of a positive mindset:
Improved Cardiovascular Health:
A study published in the American Journal of Cardiology found that optimism is associated with a lower risk of heart failure. Optimistic individuals had a significantly reduced risk of cardiovascular events compared to their pessimistic counterparts.
Enhanced Immune Function:
Research from the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology suggests positive emotions boost the immune system. People who frequently experience positive emotions are less likely to develop illnesses and recover more quickly from infections.
Better Mental Health:
A meta-analysis in the Journal of Clinical Psychology reported that positive thinking is linked to lower levels of depression and anxiety. Cognitive-behavioural interventions that promote positive thinking have been effective in treating these mental health conditions.
Increased Longevity:
A study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences found that positive thinking and overall life satisfaction are associated with a longer lifespan. People with a positive outlook tend to live longer than those with a negative one.
Stress Reduction:
Research from the Health Psychology journal indicates that positive thinking can help individuals manage stress more effectively. Optimists tend to cope better with stress and use healthier coping strategies, reducing stress’s negative impact on their bodies.
Better Physical Health:
According to a study in Psychosomatic Medicine, positive thinking is associated with better physical health outcomes, such as lower blood pressure, better cholesterol levels, and reduced risk of chronic diseases.
Enhanced Recovery from Surgery:
A study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry found that patients with a positive outlook experienced faster recovery after surgery and fewer postoperative complications than those with a negative outlook.
 These findings underscore a positive mindset’s significant impact on physical and mental health.  

Thoughts for the week. 

  1. We live in very difficult times, and there are many reasons to be negative.
  2. We all go through difficult times and have the right to moan and groan.
  3. However, all the evidence points to the fact that a positive mindset is physically and mentally healthier for us.
  4. This week, use my favourite technique, gratitude, to maintain a positive attitude.
  5. Whenever you feel negative, stop what you are doing and visualise several things you are grateful for. As you do this, the feel-good neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin are released into your bloodstream, and you immediately feel better. Then, get back to what you were doing with a better attitude.
  6. Repeat this every time you experience negative emotions. I used this to help me get over the death of my mum, which devastated me. 

Well, that’s it for this week. Have a wonderful weekend and keep believing.
Warm regards


Share this post!