The Case for Optimism2023-12-04

The mind is its own place and, in itself can make a heaven of hell or a hell of heaven.

John Milton

Optimism is the hope things will get better. It is associated with higher life satisfaction, along with low anxiety and high mood. Optimists are more inclined to invest their resources (time, energy, attention, and money) in doing things for themselves and for others, with a longer time horizon. Conversely, when individuals have lower life satisfaction, are anxious or depressed, they do not do necessary things for themselves, and do not help others. We call that pessimism.

Optimism can lead to individuals (and organisms) allocating more resources for repair, activity and expansion. It is the basis of the placebo response. It may be the basis of active longevity.

Given all these benefits, how to cultivate optimism, in yourself and others? It is best done bio-socio-psychologically. Biologically, cultivate health. Socially, cultivate a positive and supportive environment. Psychologically, choose to focus on gratitude, and on your strengths. Our Life x Mind app has a simple, 4-item, Self Therapy screen, that pops up before Noon every day when you use the app ( and can be accessed from the menu thereafter). It sets you on the right path of optimism.

Live. Happier. Longer.