“Do Positive People Live Longer?”

“Do Positive People Live Longer?” That’s the million-dollar question, isn’t it? Everyone wants to know the truth. Are the happier more optimistic ones the ones that can easily live past 90 something years old? Is it because they get less stressed in day-to-day life? Or maybe is it because when something doesn’t quite go their way, the person with a positive attitude might just look for another solution? Always looking at the brighter side of things.

To test this question, multiple studies were done. Some of which were at universities like “Yale” and others were at clinics like at the “Mayo Clinic” according to this article. For instance, there was a study performed at Carnegie Mellon University that in the study, “each of 193 healthy volunteers between the ages of 18 and 55 was given nasal drops [that] contained a cold or flu virus.” “Then the participants were also assessed for their emotional style — … and each person’s health was then monitored in quarantine.” So “as the volunteers developed symptoms of infection, all the tissues that they used were collected and weighed so that mucous production could be compared in each individual across the group.” It was later noted, “those who were [the] most positive actually produced less mucus” So “a positive attitude had a biological impact and positive people were also found to have fewer overall symptoms. “

Though the mentioned above is just one study. Another study is a“30-year study of 447 people at the Mayo Clinic [that] found that optimists had around a 50 percent lower risk of early death than pessimists”. Coming to the conclusion that the “Mind and body are linked and [your] attitude has an impact on the final outcome — death.”

While the last mentioned study is the mentioned “Yale study” from the second paragraph that, “asked 660 elderly people whether they agreed that we become less useful as we age. Those who didn’t agree, and therefore had the most positive attitude about aging, lived an average of 7.5 years longer than those with the most negative attitudes, who did agree that we become less useful as we age.” (Which is mostly a matter of optimism and attitude.)

            The most noticeable main difference between the two types of people is stress and how they react to it. Since “stress is [the] only part of the equation that describes the physical impact of a negative attitude.” And stress only “speeds up aging”. A good example of this situation could be our last President of the United States, Barack Obama. Who after his time as president, which anyone with a brain could tell is a very stressful job, had lost a bunch of his hair, had it grow gray and even just looked much older. Making him seemingly age quicker. (Though I’m not saying he’s going to die anytime soon.)

Stress. That is why, I think, positive people live longer than negative people. They don’t get as stressed as much or more so let it affect them as much. Which is good for the positive people, but bad for the negative, seeing as though “chronic stress has been shown to have a number of negative health impacts, from insomnia to weight gain to an increased risk for heart disease — not to mention impairing the immune and digestive systems as well as the central nervous system.” (Which is proven by a mentioned Dutch study in this article that explained that “people with a positive attitude, quite simply, lived longer and even had a 77 percent lower risk of heart disease than pessimists.”)

“Teens’ Late-Night Cellphone Use Linked with Mental Health Problems”

          “Can teens’ late-night cell phone usage be linked to mental health problems?” is a questioned posed by a study from Japan that suggests “teens who use their cellphones after “lights out” may be at increased risk for mental health problems, as well as lost sleep” according to this ‘Live Science’ article that I have found.

According to this study, teens that frequently used their cellphones after going to bed are more likely to have: “poor mental health, suicidal thoughts and harm themselves.” when being compared with those who do not use their phones that late at night. The study was based off a self-report questionnaire given to 17,920 adolescents. Which, according to the article, the questionnaire was “a series of logistic regression analyses that were separately conducted for early (grades 7–9) and late (grades 10–12) adolescents.” It was also noted that the participants “answered questions designed to assess symptoms of anxiety and depression and the occurrence of suicidal thoughts and self-harm.”

In the study; it was also reported about “how many hours each adolescent slept at night and how often they spoke on their cellphones or sent emails after going to bed” since obviously, cellphone use after before bed is linked to a shorter time asleep. Which, is one of the only things I can actually agree with in this studies results and can personally understand seeing as though I’ve had my fair share of nights that I spent keeping myself occupied enough by electronics to not fall asleep. Which though it mostly occurred during summer when I refused to sleep until the sun rose and manage four hours each night. (Or should I say day? Seeing as though it was between 6 and 7 AM every time and I just enjoyed it. Though not enough to bring it into the coming school year, seeing as though I need my sleep and I’ll be on the bus on my way to school by then.)

An example of another thing from the research that I agree with could be that “looking at a bright display and performing tasks that excite the brain may change the production of melatonin; a hormone produced during sleep, and hurt the quality of a night’s rest” which is something I agree with seeing as though I have experience with the unconscious mind and I have heard of it before. My experience can best be explained by the two stories of how I learned that thinking of something a lot during the day could affect how you sleep at night. The first example being when I was about 8 or 9 and I decided it’d be a good idea to watch my older brother play the new Call Of Duty: Zombies game because zombies are cool and I regretted it the same night when I have a nightmare about zombies with glowing eyes trying to kill me. While the second example was more recently though still years ago when I had read a book before bed and had a dream about the book.

 

Though to go more into the mentioned above with the “hurting the quality of a night’s rest” it would be best to bring up my most recent realization that I had when I heard that people shouldn’t use their phone an hour before they sleep for their brain won’t fully shut off while they’re sleeping. Which, for people like me, lead to me having dreams and waking up feeling restless for my brain wouldn’t stop functioning. Just playing a sort of movie of random stuff that even I cannot make sense of, while I was the one whose subconscious conjured it up.

 

Though that’s simply my experience, but going back to the article and research I think it would be best to note the caution that “the study only found an association, and they [the researchers] cannot say that nighttime cellphone use causes mental health problems or reduced sleep.” Saying things like, “It could be that teens that use phones after bedtime are a specific group, one already prone to mental health troubles.” Which I have to agree with, seeing as though I am a teenager with teenager problems and teenage friends who have teenager experiences. (Also, I read a lot, which always helps.) Though I don’t just have to rely on my experiences simply for that seeing as though there was a study published back in 2011, on how teens who had trouble sleeping were at increased risk for suicidal thoughts and self-harm.

 

So the question in the beginning of this blog post cannot really be answered as easily as hoped due to the possibility of these teens already having mental problems and how “mental health problems may lead people to stay up late at night and use their phones”. As well as how Japan has one of the highest suicide rates in the world and how the findings do not necessarily apply to U.S. children” according to a child and adolescent psychiatrist in Silver Springs; by the name of Dr. Michael Brody. Who considered that “the researchers do not know the reasons for the nighttime cellphone use. The children could be reaching out to others at night to talk about their problems.” which I completely understand seeing as though I have had friends talk to me about their at night. At a time when they are having difficulty sleeping themselves because of life troubles weighing down on them. Which I consider very important to understand, seeing as though teens aren’t just wasting away that late at night. Which is the opposite of what Lauren Hale had said, when she said, They watch television, they surf of the web…they play video games”.

“An inventor is simply a fellow who doesn’t take his education too seriously.” – Charles F. Kettering

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“An inventor is simply a fellow who doesn’t take his education too seriously.”

            This quote is a quote that funnily enough was said by, according to Google, “an American inventor” himself. Which helps makes his opinion valid, in my opinion, which, for it is mine makes it valid enough for me to make my most recent blog post a reflection of it. Purely opinion based, haha. Having invented the “Delco ignition system”, which is often also known as the “Kettering ignition system”. Which was named after its inventor, Charles F. Kettering, as most inventions are. This ignition system, according to Google, because I barely know anything about cars is “a type of inductive discharge ignition system”. Making Kettering an inventor as well as an engineer, businessman, and much more. Kettering was a businessman as he was the ”founder of Delco, as well as the head of research at General Motors from 1920 to 1947.”

Though for the sake of the quote, which is aimed towards talking about inventors, I will talk about exactly that to explain this quote. Like what it means to me and what I believe it was meant to teach. As most educational and inspirational quotes do. So, on I go with explaining:

This quote, to me, means that to be an inventor it is important to be someone who has an imagination and often thinks outside the box rather than keeps himself/herself limited to what is known and already has been done. An inventor thinks differently than others and is innovative, meaning “a person who introduces new ideas” and is “original and creative in thinking.” This kind of thinking being the same kind of thinking that leads to these “inventors” seeing the world very differently than those who do not.

Some of the most notable, for being a drop out (whether it be college or high school), though still successful besides that they didn’t worry so much for education rather than worked with what they had originally with their originality being:

Thomas Edison The inventor of the light bulb, phonograph, and the motion picture camera,

Benjamin FranklinThe inventor of electricity, bifocal glasses, a usable battery and much more. Franklin believed electricity could be harnessed from lightning.

Bill Gates – The co-founder of Microsoft.

Albert EinsteinThe man whose theories of relativity led to new ways of looking at time, space, matter, energy and gravity.

Steve Jobs An American entrepreneur, businessman, inventor, and industrial designer. He was the co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer (CEO) of Apple Inc.

As well as much more, but these are just a few. These five people having become successful with limited education and knowledge. Showing exactly what it says in the quote “An inventor is simply a fellow who doesn’t take his education too seriously.” by not giving up because they didn’t learn that a key on a kite would conduct electricity or that their theories may fail because no one’s tried them before. So, I’ll leave this blog post on the note of an Einstein quote, “Imagination is more important than knowledge”

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“The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work” by Emile Zola

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           “The artist is nothing without the gift, but the gift is nothing without work” is a quote by Emile Zola that I can easily deem straightforward enough and I say that because as a kid, and I’m sure I’m not the only one, for as I see it: as long as a kid can comprehend or simply understand it; it is practically drilled into their heads (metaphorically of course, I don’t condone bringing drills near any children’s heads. Haha.) that no one is truly great at something without practice.

Never really being able to be considered at his or her highest potential for whatever they consider their talent, or as said in the quote above, their gift. An example being how: it’s considered that no one is just naturally a genius. Though they may be incredibly smart, they can always learn more and there will always be more to learn if they seek it. It’s a vast world that we live in, and I’m sure that what a teenager from California knows would be different than a man who had spent say their life of 57 years in China. Which, as a sort of open-minded person, I consider great.

Though it’s not only that way for the logical sort of stuff. Like mathematics, history and such, but also for physical. As stated in the example that could be found in the quote itself with the artist and their art. Though there are many different types of art and artists. Whether they be one’s with paint and pencils and stencils or gracefully move their bodies to a specific tune. A musician with their words and the strength in the voice that sings it, or the instrument they play.

One good example of this is: the famous Portuguese soccer player (or football in multiple other countries like the United Kingdom) Cristiano Ronaldo, who once said: “Talent without working hard is nothing”. Which I could easily go on about how right he was when he said this, but I’m not going to lie, it’s literally the same thing as the quote I’m writing this entire blog post about. Him saying that is a good, no great example, for to be able to play soccer as good as he does he must have had reason to believe he was good in the first place. This being the “The artist is nothing without the gift” part of the quote while he is the ‘artist’ for soccer and being able to play the sport is his ‘gift’. As for the “but the gift is nothing without work”, that part is the hard work and effort he put into being one of the greats and getting his spot on these two teams: “Real Madrid” and the “Portugal national team”. (I know that much because though I’m not really a big fan of sports, soccer was one of the main sports I watched and seemed a bit interested ((in watching of course)) because of my dad and older brother who love it)

A more personal example of this quote could be mentioned with how much I love writing. Creative writing mostly, though essays are okay. Heck, I’m doing one now. (I used to not be a fan of them, but this class is making them bearable. Thanks Ms. Lahaise) For as long as I can remember, I loved writing. Whether it was short stories or journal entries that I kept in a little notebook, or that one story of this girl superhero and her dog sidekick that just so happened to have the same name as my dog at the time that I made a book for of folded construction paper. It was about a half a page worth with messy and big lettering, but I was so proud of it when I made it at about the age of 7. I was proud of it then, sure, but I can assure you that it wasn’t my greatest and as time goes on and I write more, I can see more and more improvements.

“A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” -Jackie Robinson

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“A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” is a quote by the famous baseball player Jackie Robinson. As a young adult and well, a human being, I can easily say I don’t quite know the real reason for life as for why we live it. Though something I often consider important is, as the quote says, how you live your life to not only affect your own life but the others’ around you as well. Whether it be positively or negatively towards the person or people. For it always affects them somehow and how it affects them is entirely based on how it is to be taken.

A good example of this quote could be the saying “be the reason someone smiles today” by an unknown author. This saying is rather well-known and famous for we even have it written on a sign at our school that I see every morning on my walk towards my homeroom, reminding me everyday. I quite like this quote for it can be taken in so many ways and worked towards in just as many. I even found a website, in my search for the stuff to be talked about in this blog post, that has over 101 different ways to get a person to smile (link can be found here). Though my personal favorites are telling a funny joke to get them to laugh, showing them that they are cared for and loved, simply smiling at a stranger or someone who’s had a bad day, and much more. Which can be explained in the quote, “Today, give a stranger one of your smiles. It might be the only sunshine he sees all day.” which can be found in the book. “P.S. I Love You” by H. Jackson Brown Jr.

A personal experience, that I’m now okay with sharing, is the one time I ended up crying in a bathroom during dinner at a restaurant with a bunch of family. Though I do not quite remember exactly why now, due to it having been years ago, I know it was pretty bad. Anyways, I excused myself before anyone knew and headed over to the bathroom, not quite wanting to talk to anyone and wanting anyone to know. Though that couldn’t really work due to it be a somewhat public restroom and ladies coming and going from there. At the time it was just me but a lady walked in a little later and saw me sad, as for what I assume was her first instinct, was to pull me into a hug and try and convince me that though she doesn’t know what is wrong it is okay and if not right now it will be that way. As John Lennon once said: “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end”.I quite liked this woman for she didn’t have to help me, but she did, and I will forever be grateful for that even though I may not even know her name.

To me, I believe there is nothing quite like being helped smile again when down due to everyone having difficult days and no one’s life being perfect. No life is perfect, though it is nice for a person to know that they are not alone and have someone who wants them to be happy/loves them. The rainbow in the dark and sad clouds that gloom over them. Which is a reference to what Maya Angelou had once said in her book “Letter To My Daughter”. This quote being: “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.”

Upon finding my rainbow, I realized years ago that one of the most important things in my life is making people happy. Though that could be pretty obvious due to the saying I live by being “As cheesy as it sounds: I just want to make people happy”. Which I had settled the deal of importance on just when I realized I had the power to do exactly that. Having the ability to make a person smile is not a gift or something that only select people have, for everyone has it in them. It is just the matter of whether or not they act on their given human ability to make another person’s day/night/week/month/year/or life better.

“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind” – Dr. Seuss

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“Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind” is a quote by Dr. Seuss that I consider very important for any child or young adult growing up to know. This is due to growing up being hard enough without having to worry , though that may be an opinion, I’m sure it is a very common one because well, life is not easy. A persons life is a matter of trial and error that I could honestly go on about in a “what’s the meaning of life?” sense, which I often think of a lot, though that’d take this journal entry far off topic and onto another. So I’ll just go back to the Dr. Seuss quote I was talking about beforehand in hopes of not only writing a good blog post, but possibly helping a person or people in need understand what I had to learn by myself. Meaning this may get a bit personal, haha.

“Be yourself” the number of times a person hears that throughout their life is pretty crazy compared to the amount of irony that could be found behind it. No one is actually expected to be themselves in life, they’re expected to fit in. Expected to be alike others and not be different because being different is often looked down upon. Expected to like this, not that, and act one way, not the other to remain a like the societies norms. A good quote to think of is a quote that might be by Albert Einstein (it’s not for sure) and easily one of my favorite quotes overall no matter the inability to find who said it, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid”.

Though I’m not here to scare anyone away and get rid of any hope someone has in finding friends and a way to fit in. I can assure you it is not always like that, for what one person way think is weird another person may think is completely normal. It’s the matter of who you decide to surround yourself with, rather than how hard you work towards impressing people who aren’t worth impressing. As a fairly (maybe more than that) shy child in a social family and community, it is safe to say I wasn’t the best at making friends due to me feeling uncomfortable with being the first one to introduce myself or make the effort. So throughout my pre-school to middle school years, I was able to get by with not being the one to make the first move and being friends with the friends of the people who did make the first move.

Though I did write a point in which that ended and it was when I started a new school, our school, and for years I spent my time trying to get people who didn’t deserve the time of day I gave them to like me and be friends with me. I did this because I was expected to and terrified of going outside of what I consider my “comfort zone”. So I tried and tried and tried, until one day I gave up and said “I’m done”. I was tired of feeling lonely and unhappy so I decided to take a chance and become comfortable with new people who I found out were more like me and finally found friends who I deem worth it. (Quote)

I quickly found people I could maintain conversations with, which is not hard as long as we have something(s) in common that we can bond over, and even learned that I’m not so much shy as I love attention (good attention) and being social. Once I start talking about something I like and care about, it’s honestly hard to get me to shut up. Ask any of my friends. Yeah, it’s nice to be able to say that and all it took was a lot of convincing from myself to myself, but I don’t regret it, any of it. It helped me become the person I am today and I couldn’t have asked for the end product any other way.

SING – My Chemical Romance

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My Chemical Romance, I’m not going to lie and say I haven’t wanted to do a reflection on their music for a while now. As well as having taken up the opportunity to do it due to the fact that on September 23, 2016, there will be a rerelease of their hit album “The Black Parade” and the10-year anniversary of that same album. Upon becoming a fan of them, fairly late may I add due to the band splitting up in March of 2013, I started listening to their music more often and much more intently. What can I say? I’m a sucker for music I deem good with a real meaning behind it. An example of a song like this, which I’m going to talk about in my blog post, is a song called “SING” (Lyrics). Though “SING” cannot be found on “The Black Parade” album, it’s the thought that counts.

“SING” is a song off their last studio album before the split, “Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys”. With the meaning behind it being a song that calls out for people to stand up and fight for what they believe in in a world where opinions and voices are silenced. This can be found in the quote, “For every time that they want to count you out. Use your voice every single time you open up your mouth.” With their fans age group ranging from teenagers to young adults, people of all races, genders (“Sing it out. Boy, you’ve got to see what tomorrow brings. Sing it out. Girl, you’ve got to be what tomorrow needs”), and up bringing’s my Chemical Romance could often be considered the voice of their generation. Thus making the band members the fictional characters in their own album’s story. The “Killjoys” as they call themselves are a sort of rebel group that are against what is considered “normal” and on the search for the truth behind this so called “better life” of just staying quiet and not questioning anything (“Boy they’re going to sell what tomorrow means”.) that they are all promised.

Though this song is easily more than just the background of a fictional story, due to the impact it leaves on the listener. As a teenager or young adult, it’s more often than not that you may feel like your opinions don’t really matter and what you believe is silly. (As I had once talked about in an journal entry; Expert – “I once saw a post on Tumblr of a man (Carl Sagan) who said when you go talk to young kids (kindergarteners and 1st graders) you find a class full of science enthusiasts. These young children ask deep questions that they wouldn’t consider ‘dumb questions’ as older students would. These questions are philosophical questions like “why is the moon round, why is the grass green, and what is a dream?’” Yet you go talk to 12th graders and there’s none of that. They’ve become incurious and for that it seems that something terrible has happened between kindergarten and 12th grade.” (Link) (Additional Quote)) Though this isn’t really much of no curiosity, but more so being fearful to speak out in general due to the fear of humiliation, being considered different in a bad way, and being hated for what they think and know is right. (“Sing it from the heart. Sing it till you’re nuts. Sing it out for the ones that’ll hate your guts.)

So as the song goes on, it tries to influence the listeners to get out of that comfort zone, not only for themselves but also their future, the future generations, and the millions of other peoples who cannot do it for themselves. Whether they are just too scared or simply cannot. An example of this from the song is, “Sing it for the deaf. Sing it for the blind. Sing about everyone that you left behind.” Though successfully doing this could make you a hero, referring to the last part of that quote, it’s rare that there is a war without any casualties. (The definition of a war, according to Google, being, “A state of competition, conflict, or hostility between different people or groups.”) Two different groups of people are referred to in this case and this quote, “You’ve got to make a choice. If the music drowns you out. And raise your voice. Every single time they try and shut your mouth” explains it all meaning that when this happens you have a choice of either lying down and giving up, or stepping up your game when times get tough.

Bullied for being straight?

“Love is love” is a statement that has been stressed for many years due to the belief that everyone deserves righteousness, fairness and equality. This statement is used to show that everyone is the same no matter whom they love and was introduced to the public eye back the early 18th and 19th century. With not many people believing “gay is okay” back then, there weren’t really much rights set for people who like their same genders like there are today. Though a lot has changed since then and it is evident that our society has made good progress towards accepting homosexuality. An example of this being, making gay marriage legal in 21 different countries, two of them being the U.S. in 2015 and the U.K. in 2014. Though gay is becoming more accepted nowadays by people and the media, not everyone accepts it. A bunch of people disagreeing due to sticking to the morals in which say that it is wrong and a sin.

Young children and adults spending their young lives being bullied and raised thinking that they are messed up, due to being different. This was extremely common back in the day and is also still happening nowadays despite the progress that has been made. Though not every child “comes out”, meaning to “to openly declare one’s homosexuality” according to the English-Webster dictionary and often hide who they are in fear of being judged, losing friends, being bullied, and even being kicked out of their own homes. Nobody wants to go through those things, so it’s often that they just don’t and live their lives “normally”.

It’s quite sad really in my opinion, but it raises a question that is evident in and follows what the video this blog post is based on. What if gay was the normality/majority and straight was considered wrong? Would it be different? Or would it be the same as it is, but with the roles switched? Would straight pride actually be something to be celebrated instead of something laughed upon as it is today? Or would it still be a joke? Actually, it raises many questions, but it is something interesting to wonder about since you can’t actually change the past to make it that way.

Though even without an alternate reality, it is possible for someone who is straight to be bullied for being straight. With gay being as common as it is, not only is it possible but also there have been cases in which it has happened. Ranging from cyber bullying to bullying at school. Bullying like this doesn’t have to be physical, since some instances could be simply saying your sexual preferences and being laughed at for absolutely no reason. Absolutely no reason meaning the person who is being bullied, even though they are straight, have nothing against gays.

Being bullied for being straight? This is actually something I can say I have experienced. It wasn’t anything serious that hurt my feelings, but a few months ago on the Internet. This being the same place where I learned through experience that LGBTQ is something of the majority and helped open my eyes more to the community. Not any real bullying, but it was as simple as a laugh in the face. Though in this case, it was through a computer screen. I wasn’t really offended by it, no, more so confused, because isn’t the quote supposed to be “love is love?”

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