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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Confidence and Health


Research at the University of Pennsylvania showed that healthier optimism results in stronger immune system.

According to psychologists, confidence is healthy optimism resulting from successful achievements through determined effort. Healthy optimism boosts your immune system, protecting you from disease. Healthy optimism is self-efficacy – an innate belief that a certain behavior will result in a certain outcome. With that belief, you are more determined to pursue your goals and to overcome the challenges in life. With self-efficacy, you will have a more confident attitude towards taking on the challenge of a healthier lifestyle, thus resulting in being younger and healthier for longer.

The following behavior patterns may indicate a lack of confidence:

Constantly trying new clothes to improve your image to make yourself acceptable

Too much preoccupation with what others may think of you

Always comparing yourself with others

Letting others put you down

Becoming disillusioned too easily

There are many ways to boost your self-confidence for healthy optimism to keep yourself younger for longer:

Choose your own healthy eating lifestyle. Do not let society (or culture) or people around you influence what you eat and drink. Personal efficacy is to be in control of your own life. Being in control of your own decisions and their consequences is the attitude that allows you to stay younger for longer.

Be more self-expressive. Do not repress the expression of your needs. The more self-expressive you are, the more self-efficacy you demonstrate in your life, and the younger and healthier for longer you will be. Emotions play a role in your immune system.

Take action to realize your dreams and goals. Spend more time on the first steps to prepare you for ultimate success. The more prepared you are, the more control you have, the less stress you feel, and the younger you become. Remember, success breeds success.

Choose supportive friends, who encourage you instead of putting you down. You generally respond to others’ expressed expectations – a kind of self-fulfilling prophecy.

Self-efficacy is managing your disappointments and frustrations, which are inevitable in life or any endeavor. Introspection and self-analysis help your learn from your mistakes, turning failures into success.

Sharing success with others, and helping others to succeed not only help your self-efficacy but also sustain your success.

Unstoppable self-confidence makes you not only feel younger but also look younger.

Creativity and imagination

Life is full of challenges and setbacks. Creativity and imagination are important for overcoming obstacles in life. When you find yourself in a difficult situation, creativity, such as thinking outside the box, often helps you in finding new ways to overcome obstacles and new ideas that will bring you new perspectives of the situation.

Martin Rossman, M.D., confounder of the Academy for Guided Imagery, says, “The imagination is probably a person’s least utilized heath resource. Your imagination can have an impact on your body, such as sexual fantasy or worrying with the worst scenarios.

According to Dr. Rossman, the use of guided imagery can help you remain healthy and young by directly affecting your physiological processes in a positive direction, such as your heart rate, blood pressure, hormone levels and immune functions. Guided imagery is essentially changing your mindset through visualization.

Spend several minutes each day in creating a new image in your mind, exploring and playing with it. Before long, you will have transformed this image into a new reality that remains in your mind for the rest of the day. You are simply transforming old mindset into new ones, and thereby creating new mental associations.

According to Dr. Rossman, if you are used to worrying yourself sick with the disastrous scenarios, you can do positive visualization—it is the same process, only in the opposite direction.

Use your imagination to change long-established mind-set, such as the popular notion that “growing old gracefully”, which essentially implies accepting and giving in to the inevitable without a fight. This mind-set is a self-fulfilling prophecy. According to psychologists, your brain fitness has to do with your neurons becoming “psychologically” weak, eventually leading to memory loss as you age.

Don’t let the fear of feeling old transform into the fear of looking old. Mark Twain rightly said: “I want to die young so I’ll have a good-looking corpse.”

Stephen Lau
Copyright© by Stephen Lau

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