An apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? What if we told you that Disney trips, Disney music, and Disney movies could keep the doctor away, too? Well according to science, being optimistic and trying to live a happy life will cause people to live longer. And what could make you happier than Disney?
According to the study — found in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and then later shared by Harvard Medical School — people who were more optimistic had a longer lifespan and a greater chance of living to be 85 years or older. And in a study of around 70,000 women and another of around 1,400 men, researchers living to at least 85.
Harvard concluded from the study:
So why might optimism affect longevity? The study wasn’t designed to explain this, but the researchers had several thoughts. While one component of optimism appears to be heritable — that is, tied to our genes — our environment and learning also shape a significant portion. One takeaway is that we can all learn ways to be more optimistic.
Whether you’re naturally optimistic or not, you can take certain steps in that direction.
So, how does this connect to Disney? Well, that’s simple: Disney makes us all happy. Mickey Mouse basically lives and breathes optimism. In virtually every Disney Princess movie — from Snow White to The Littler Mermaid — audiences are taught to persevere and remain optimistic no matter what obstacles we are faced with. Timon and Pumbaa of The Lion King have been telling us “no worries” since 1994. And having something wonderful to look forward to — like a Disney vacation to the Happiest Place on Earth at Disneyland or the Most Magical Place on Earth at Disney World — can only make us happier and more optimistic humans.
By the time we get to the Disney Parks, we’re constantly looking on the bright side, because the theme parks and resorts tell us that no matter what is going on in our personal lives or whatever obstacles we had to go through to get here, we’re experiencing the magic of Disney for however long our vacation lasts, be it one day or one week. And it’s the magic and optimism that Disney Parks bring that keep us wanting to return again and again.
So book that Disney trip, go see the latest movie, and put on your favorite magical playlist. Because from what we can tell, doing whatever you can to look on the bright side and trying your best to be optimistic will help you live a longer, happier life. And a longer life means more opportunities to experience Disney vacations…right?