‘Time’ reports on a new study which suggests that people age better if they have a purpose or some meaning in their life. This is not simply about wellbeing, but about physical functioning and health, and is the first study to examine the links between having a sense of purpose and physical change.
You can watch the short YouTube video here : TIME : People age better if they have purpose in life
What do you think of this finding? Does it encourage you to reflect on your own life?
As we age our sense of meaning and purpose often changes as we leave paid work and family relationships transform, and maybe diminish. Other studies indicate that the most likely routes to happiness are investing in social relationships, belonging to a community of some kind, and contributing to something that feels worthy to us, whatever that may be even if it seems modest to others. Ageing can bring challenges in this regard, but it is possible to cultivate meaning in even testing circumstances. With imagination and resolve we can find activities and contacts that make us feel we still belong and have worth. They may not be world-changing or have the dynamism of our youth (though they might!) but even small actions can count and bring improvement to our lives.