Monthly Article Archives: March 2013

“Living in Peace with that which You Cannot Change”Robert Brooks, Ph.D.

Years ago I viewed a segment on CNN that featured centenarians who were part of a study being conducted by the Boston University School of Medicine under the direction of Dr. Thomas Perls. According to an overview and history provided on the website of the New England Centenarian Study (NECS), the study began in 1995 and included all centenarians living within eight towns in the Boston area. Since then it has expanded to enroll individuals from throughout the United States and other countries. The NECS project aims to understand those lifestyle factors that contribute to “a model of aging well.” I was intrigued by their findings and will probably devote a future article to their work. The CNN segment included interviews with centenarians who shared their insights about what led to happiness in their lives. As examples, a man soon to be 100 years old and still working 3-4 hours a day as a lawyer talked about the importance of being engaged in work and other activities that you found rewarding and enjoyable. A woman emphasized warm relationships with others while another woman spoke about the need for resilience and being able to “come back from great disappointments and

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