Healthy Aging

Recently, I was reminded of a study released back in late 2015, that took a long term look at the health, success, and happiness of a group of men. The Harvard Study of Adult Development began in 1938, and collected data from a demographically mixed group of men over the course of their lives. They asked questions and made in person evaluations to look at one primary thing: what has the most impact on happiness?

The results were widely reported, and you may have seen or heard about it already, but it’s good to be reminded. The study showed that the number one factor in both happiness and longevity is close, dependable relationships. That’s not to say that people don’t argue or have their ups and downs, but if you can truly count on your partners and friends, you are far more likely to live a healthy, long, and happy life. They have proven that our physical health is directly tied to our emotional and spiritual health, so keeping the job that makes you miserable, and hanging on to the relationships that harm you can actually shorten your life.

Many of the families of the remaining participants are now a part of the ongoing study which has added some diversity to the mix, but I doubt the findings will change much. What it does do, is remind us to work at the relationships that bring us joy, and follow the path that brings us caring community.

To read about the ongoing study, go here. For good tips on coupled relationships, click here. To watch a video about this study, click here.

Thanks for reading-

-Dr. Joe

Let's Talk

After listening to a TedTalk by Alison Killing about architecture, hospitals, and dying, I was struck by this quote:

“If we want better buildings for dying, then we have to talk about it, but because we find the subject of death uncomfortable, we don't talk about it, and we don't question how we as a society approach death.”

This is so true and can be said of anything having to do with death or dying; If we don’t open the door and get past the discomfort around discussing these things, the important questions remain unanswered. I want to have some say in how my care is handled, and I bet you do too.

Here’s a link to a site where you can download free power of attorney forms. And here you can watch the TedTalk I mentioned.

Thanks for reading-

-Dr. Joe