Anything that may extend my life is worth listening to. I’m not going to eat broccoli every day and give up soda, but I may do it occasionally. So, when I heard that scientists are saying creativity is the key to a longer life, I’m all ears. I kind of guessed that anyway. Creativity is fun and keeps your mind occupied with something interesting and challenging. I can see why it would extend your life. I would say that creativity is also the key to a better life.

A friend of mine who is in his mid to late 80s and still very creatively active, has a whiteboard in his office full of ideas. He keeps adding to it every day. His logic is that if he has a goal he has to complete, he can’t die until he has them all finished. If he stops adding to the list he’s afraid his time will be up. He is still creating businesses, books, and other projects at a pace most young people would envy.

Creativity key to longer life

According to an article in Scientific American  “One possible reason creativity is protective of health is because it draws on a variety of neural networks within the brain, says study author Nicholas Turiano, now at the University of Rochester Medical Center.”

Scientists have indeed found a correlation between creativity and certain health benefits that may contribute to a longer life. Here are some ways in which creativity can potentially impact longevity:

Cognitive stimulation

Engaging in creative activities stimulates the brain and promotes cognitive health. It can enhance neural connections, improve memory, and help maintain mental agility as you age.

Stress reduction

Creative pursuits such as painting, writing, or playing a musical instrument can serve as effective stress relievers. Lowering stress levels has been linked to various health benefits. This incudes reduced risk of heart disease, improved immune function, and better overall well-being.

Emotional well-being

Expressing oneself creatively can positively impact mental and emotional well-being. Engaging in creative activities provides an outlet for self-expression, helps manage emotions, and fosters a sense of fulfillment and purpose. This emotional balance is associated with improved mental health and may contribute to a longer, healthier life.

Increased resilience

Creativity often involves problem-solving and thinking outside the box, which can improve adaptability and resilience. Being able to approach challenges with creative solutions may help individuals better navigate the ups and downs of life, leading to improved overall health and longevity.

Social engagement

Many creative endeavors, such as joining art classes, writing groups, or theater productions, provide opportunities for social interaction and community engagement. Social connections have been shown to have a positive impact on health and longevity, reducing the risk of loneliness and isolation.

Lifelong learning

Engaging in creative activities often involves continuous learning and skill development. A commitment to lifelong learning is associated with increased cognitive function and a lower risk of cognitive decline as you age.

While there is evidence to support the connection between creativity and health benefits, it’s important to note that many factors contribute to a longer life, including genetics, lifestyle choices, and overall health habits. Embracing creativity as part of a well-rounded approach to a healthy lifestyle can potentially contribute to a longer and more fulfilling life. Creativity is the key to a longer life!