smiling womanOver the years, evidence has built up, suggesting that positive mental states can indeed affect your health for the better. Consider, for instance, how one trio of studies showed ways in which hope can affect physical well-being.

In study one, greater hope was associated with depth of commitment to a healthier diet and regular exercise. In study two, the integrative hope scale was associated with a wider array of health behaviors as compared to a standard goal-oriented hope scale. In study three, a hope-centered content analysis of testimonies provided by long-term breast cancer survivors revealed a strong reliance on attachment and spirituality, dimensions typically neglected in psychological studies of this [hope] construct.

But what’s especially awesome is that we have the power to change our brains to orient toward more positive mental habits. Here’s one way of making that happen:

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Image by St0rmz, via Flickr

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