Are you the captain of your own ship? It seems that people who believe in their own effort to change their lives actually are healthier.
Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy
And on the flip side, a recent Australian study found people who believe in luck or fate typically have unhealthier lifestyles.
Scott Bea, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist, says the unhealthy behaviors may stem from a greater inclination to “give up, give in, and actually seek comfort” through overeating, being sedentary, eating comfort foods, and smoking.
Researchers at the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social research found people who believed they could change their lives by their own actions ate healthier.
Dr. Bea says that people who leave their lifestyle to fate are looking for the easy way out. “Our brains are moldable; they can be changed,” he says. “They get changed through hard effort, practice and rehearsals that really stick once you incorporate them.”
Dr. Bea says developing healthy lifestyle changes may be uncomfortable at first, but be patient — they pay off in the end.