According to Dr. Barbara Frederickson’s research, positive emotions open our minds and enable us to see the bigger picture. When we feel positive emotions, it’s like a water lily opening at sunrise, nourishing our minds to expand our perspective and enabling us to see interconnections. Positive emotions enhance our ability to collaborate and develop creative solutions to pressing problems.
Dr. Frederickson also discovered positive emotions transform us at the cellular level. On average, at the cellular level 1% of our cells are renewed each day, so the human body is regenerated every 100 days or the length of a season. One of the most effective ways to increase our “daily diet” of positive emotions is to practice the loving-kindness meditation, which Dr. Frederickson has studied. When loving-kindness meditation is practiced for 3 months, it leads to profound transformations in our mindset and well-being, which also come through at the cellular level. The degree to which people experience positive emotions determine whether they languish or flourish!
Another recent study found that people who practice loving-kindness meditation over a long-term period have chromosomes with longer telomeres, a marker associated with longevity and lower risk for cancer.