“Optimists are healthier, wealthier and happier,” says Ginny Graves in her book Real Simple: The Power of Positivity. Having a cheery outlook boosts your chances of living past 85, according to a Harvard study, which may be because optimists have low levels of inflammation or high levels of healthy bacteria in their guts. Or maybe it’s because “optimists have more nourishing relationships”, as they tend to see the best in their friends and family.
What’s more, optimists tend to do better in the workplace because they believe good things will happen if they work hard. They also get less stressed and are 40% more likely than pessimists to get promoted quickly at work, six times as likely to feel highly engaged at work, and five times less likely to burn out. They are also better with money.
The good news is, “you can train your brain to see things from a brighter perspective”. Spending two minutes each morning thinking about what you’re grateful for has been shown to increase positivity in just two weeks. What’s more, setting realistic goals regularly “helps you believe in yourself and your ability to be successful in the future”.
Keeping up with Catherine Zeta-Jones
The actress Catherine Zeta-Jones “reminds us that there are no rules when it comes to ageless glamour”, writes Caroline Leaper in The Telegraph. The 51-year-old wears and does whatever she wants. She recently posted a video of herself dancing down the aisle of her walk-in wardrobe to Madonna’s Vogue, dressed in glamorous outfits. “When in doubt, turn your closet into a runway” read her caption. The daughter of a Swansea seamstress, Zeta-Jones has always loved fashion.
However, unlike most Hollywood actresses, she is not a slave to the latest trends. She “unapologetically” likes sparkle, black lace and vintage dresses. All to her husband’s dismay, who calls her “a high-class hoarder”. When journalist Jonathan Van Meter took her and Renée Zellweger out for dinner in Manhattan, he wrote, “Zeta-Jones showed up late in a leather trench coat and a cloud of perfume and ordered a rare steak and champagne. Zellweger arrived very early – in her running clothes – and ate steamed spinach.” Zeta-Jones is clearly out to enjoy herself, and “I’m with her; I’d personally take the steak any day.”