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Psychological Well-Being Increases After 50

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The period between ages 18 and 50 may be tough, but according to research, 51 is great. A study conducted by Stony Brook University based on answers from a 2008 Gallup-Healthways telephone survey of 340,000 adults found that while well-being tends to decline between ages 18 and 50, boomers’ life perceptions become more positive as they get older. Worry and stress also decline after boomers hit the big 5-0.

This change isn’t related to employment or marital status, or whether respondents have children at home.

Stress and anger declined over lifetimes, the study found, but worry remained steady until age 50, when it dropped sharply. Sadness, on the other hand, showed a slightly inverted U-shaped pattern over time.

The reasons for this pattern are unknown, according to the study, but we’ll take good news where we can get it.