At What Age Are at We the Most Optimistic?
Before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, would you have classified yourself as more of a 'glass half empty' or 'glass half full' kind of person?
Did you tend to find the good in almost every situation or were you wired to always be wary and skeptical?
There's no doubt that the events of the past six months have taken the optimism out of of a lot of us, but the closer you are to middle age, the better the chances are you might still be clinging to some sort of hope, even in the face of seemingly never-ending gloom and doom.
BestLife says a positive outlook on life isn't something associated with youth anymore.
They quote a recent study from researchers from the University of California, Davis that was published in the journal Social Psychology and Personality Science. The study found that the optimism levels actually follow an inverted U-shaped curve, which peaks when we're in our mid-50s.
To reach that conclusion, researchers used results from what's called the Life Orientation Test, which measures a person's tendencies to be more positive or negative with statements like 'In uncertain times, I usually expect the best', 'If something can go wrong for me, it will', and, 'Overall, I expect more good things to happen to me than bad'.
Adults aged 26 to 71 were asked to complete the test four times over a seven-year period. The answers revealed that optimism levels were actually lowest among participants in their 20s, then it rose steadily for those in their mid-30s and 40s, before hitting its peak at the age of 55.
So while most of us dread the thought of hitting middle age, at least now you've got something to look forward to.
Let's just hope the world turns itself around in the meantime.