Want to live longer? Find a purpose in Life
Living a purpose-driven life seems to be adding more years to some people, so you better start looking for your purpose.
According to one study funded by the US National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Aging, having a strong sense of purpose can lead to longer life. To reach this conclusion, the researchers followed 6,000 people aged 20 to 70 in a span of 14 years.
The respondents’ sense of purpose was scored depending on how they felt toward these three statements:
- ‘Some people wander aimlessly through life, but I am not one of them.’
- ‘I live life one day at a time and don’t really think about the future.’
- ‘I sometimes feel as if I’ve done all there is to do in life.’
Aside from the statements, their social relationships were also used in the scoring system. These were then measured against the death rates of the respondents in the next 14 years.
The researchers found out that those who died scored poorly in purpose of life and positive social relationships. They concluded ‘This study underscores the potential for purpose to influence healthy aging across adulthood and points to the need for further investigation on why finding a purpose may add years to one’s life.’
The study has many loopholes (it did not take into account risk factors like health, illness and lifestyle) and does not prove any direct association between life purpose and mortality. However, it nevertheless gives reason for people to search for their purpose in life so they could enrich it.