You may find it surprising to find that nobody really dies of old age. The main factor is a decline in bodily systems that lead to cells no longer being able to repair themselves. Our bodies are efficient machines using the use it or lose it principle. It becomes more apparent when we age.
In his interview with Joe Rogan Mark Sisson talks about how the loss of muscle mass accelerates with aging eventually causing less mobility, injuries, and bedridden last days. Therefore it is even more important to train physically as we get older.
Equally, our brains need stimulation to stay healthy. Learning new skills increases brain activity and keeps us sharp. The mental gym is equally important as doing push-ups or jogging. It is also found that having a purpose leads to a happier and longer life. In fact, having no purpose doubles the chances of dying.
In this famous study residents of an aged care centre were given plants. Half of the residents were tasked to look after the plants and the other half was told that the staff will be responsible for it. The researchers found that the first group reduced mortality by 50 per cent in 18 months during the experience compared to the second group. The plant career group was also happier, more active, and more alert.
Feeling happy and optimistic is associated with living longer lives. And this makes total sense.
Let’s imagine that life is a party. You walk around enthusiastic about meeting new people smiling and in a great mood. You are having a great time and want to stay longer.
When bumping into unsavoury characters you don’t let them bring you down and find a crowd that makes you happy. People notice you are a fun guy or a girl to be around and they come to you. You meet new friends they invite you to their house and you keep going. In the opposite scenario, you walk aimlessly, unhappy-looking like you don’t want to be there. When having conversations you break social norms, talk over others, and say stuff that is better kept in your head. At some point, you get kicked out for starting a fight with a guy enjoying his beer. The end.
The reality is everyone wants to have a good life. But not everyone is willing to show appreciation or make an effort to change things when they are not going the right way. Life favors optimistic people with a purpose who spend time exercising their minds and bodies. The great news is that it is never late to start something awesome. There are 90-year-old marathon runners, successful companies started by people in their 60, bodybuilders born in 1940s who are rocking it. You have no excuse really.
So let’s make it real.
- Choose one thing that will make you happier, healthier, and stronger in your mind or body.
- Pick a day when you want to start doing this thing consistently daily or weekly.
- Start and make it a habit. Don’t feel like it – do it anyway.
Let me know by email or comment what you choose – I am keen to know!