Assignment: Optimism and Health

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Assignment: Optimism and Health
Andrea Pulis
PSY/220
October 9, 2012
Ratonya Bennett

For this paper, I researched two peer reviewed articles which discusses the effects of optimism and psychological health. The first one that I found is called Optimism and Physical Health: A Meta-analytic Review by Heather N. Rasmussen, Ph.D., Michael F. Scheier, Ph.D., and Joel B. Greenhuse, Ph.D. It was published in 2009. The second article that I located is called Perceived Academic Control: mediating the effects of optimism and social support on college students’ psychological health by Joelle C. Ruthig, Tara L. Haynes, Robert H. Stupnisky, and Raymond P. Perry.

In Optimism and Physical Health, there was a study conducted to find out the relationship between optimism and physical health outcomes. According to their findings, the data suggests that optimism is a significant predictor of physical health. I would have to agree with this study and I find it validating. One thing that I found interesting in the article was the significance of pessimism and physical health. We learned from the study that optimism can have a positive effect on physical health but we also learn that pessimism can have a negative effect on physical health. According to the article Optimism and Physical health, “It may well be the case that it is the presence or absence of pessimism that is important in determining physical health outcomes rather than the presence or absence of optimism”(p.247). What this is telling me is that having the presence of pessimism can have a more negative effect on physical health rather than the positive effect optimism has on physical health. To summarize, “In general, it is clear from this review that optimism is related to physical health. It is also clear that the link between optimism and health is stronger for subjective health outcomes than for objective health outcomes” (p. 248). This study really shows this information and it can be said that for future...
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