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Gain 10 Extra Years of Your Life!

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Game designer Jane McGonigal invented a real life game to life a healthier and longer life. After years of thorough research about Post Traumatic Growth, a positive psychological change which can occur in victims of trauma, she came to a conclusion that improving on four different types of resilience in everyday life could give a person ten extra years of life. 

McGonigal found that the top five regrets of people on their deathbed were: 

She also found that people with Post Traumatic Growth experienced the opposite of these regrets, and were leading a happier, healthier, and longer life. 

So how can people that don’t experience traumas still go through the process of adding an extra 10 years to their lives? 

Boost physical resilience before a stress-inducing activity: 

Anytime that you are not sitting still, but rather moving around increases physical resilience.

Clench your fists and lift your arms above your head (like a superhero) or take three steps marching or stomping.

By doing this, your body can endure more stress and heal faster. 

Boost mental resilience before an activity which requires intense focus and thought: 

Willpower works like a muscle, it has to be trained in order to build up to full strength. Tackling small challenges without giving up gradually increases your willpower: 

Snap your fingers exactly fifty times or count backwards from 100 by 7.

Boost emotional resilience before activities which require compassion and emotional connections:

Find a window and look into/out of it or quickly google an image of your favorite baby animal 

This will provoke powerful positive emotions like curiosity or love, which can be experienced in these two activities. 

Experiencing three positive emotion for every negative one boosts your health and ability to successfully tackle everyday problems. 

Boost social resilience before activities requiring interactions with others: 

A few quick actions will make you prone to like and want to help others.

Shake someone’s hand for 6 seconds or send someone a quick “thank you” by text or email

Gratitude and touch from the people around empower you in social situations and increase levels of the trust hormone in your body (oxytocin) 

Overall to live 10 years longer:

  1. maintain a 3:1 positive to negative emotion ratio 
  2. never sit still for more than one hour at a time 
  3. reach out to one person you care about everyday 
  4. tackle tiny goals to boost your willpower 

Check out Jane McGonigal’s TED Talk for more information: 

 

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