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- IELTS Reading Matching Sentence Endings
- IELTS Reading Summary Completion
- IELTS Reading Yes/No/Not Given
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IELTS Reading Passage – Optimism And Health
Optimism and Health
Mindset is all. How you start the year will set the template for the rest, and two scientifically backed character traits hold the key: optimism and resilience (if the prospect leaves you feeling pessimistically spineless, the good news is that you can significantly boost both of these qualities).
When faced with a year of falling economics and rising human distress, maintaining a rosy outlook may appear delusory and Pollyannaish. But here comes the optimism paradox. “Optimists are unrealistic,” said Brice Pitt, an emeritus professor of psychiatry of old age at Imperial College, London. Depressive people see things as they truly are, but this is an evolutionary disadvantage. Optimism is an evolutionary tool that has carried us through millennia of setbacks’.
Optimists have a lot to smile about. In other words, if you’re able to persuade oneself that things will improve, the chances of that happening will increase – because you will continue to play the game. Optimism, in this context, “is a routine method of conveying your setbacks to yourself,” according to Martin Seligman, a psychology teacher and the author of Learned Optimism. When things get tough, optimists outperform pessimists: they perform better at work, better respond to stress, have fewer episodes of depression, and accomplish more personal goals.
According to research, belief can also help with financial difficulties. Chad Wallens, a social forecaster at the Henley Centre who conducted a survey middle-class Britons’ beliefs about income, has found that “the people who feel richest, and those who feel desperately poor, actually have almost the same amount of money at their disposal. Their perceptions and behaviour patterns, on the other hand, differ.
Optimists have another reason to be cheerful: they are generally stronger. For example, Dr. Becca Levy of Yale University discovered that having a positive attitude adds an average of seven years to your life in a study of 660 volunteers. Another American study claims to have discovered a physical mechanism for this. According to a Harvard Medical School study of 670 men, optimists have significantly better lung function. Dr. Rosalind Wright, the lead author, believes that attitude helps to strengthen the immune system. “The Preliminary research studies on heart patients reveal that changing a person’s attitude and temper can reduce their risk of death,” she highlights.
Few studies have attempted to determine the global proportion of optimists. However, according to a 1995 nationwide survey conducted by the American magazine Adweek, roughly half of the population considered themselves optimists, with women slightly more likely than men (53% versus 48%) to see the bright side.
Of course, there is no surety that optimism will protect you from the worst effects of the credit crunch, but the best strategy is to keep smiling and thank your lucky stars. Because, as any good sports coach knows, adversity is character-forming if you practice resilience skills. According to research conducted among tycoons and business leaders, the path to success is frequently littered with failure: a track record of sackings, bankruptcies, and stinging criticism. Rather than curling into a fetal ball under the table, they decided to pick themselves up, acquire valuable lessons from their blunders, and progress towards the next opportunity.
Resilience is defined by the American Psychological Association as the capacity to adapt in the midst of adversity, trauma, or tragedy. A resilient person may face troubles and lack of certainty, and yet he or she will persevere.
According to Yale University researchers in the optimism is one of the key traits needed to build resilience. Clinical Psychology Annual Review. They go on to say that resilient people learn to keep their sense of humour, which can help them maintain a flexible attitude when major changes in plans are required. According to the study, the ability to accept your lot with equanimity is also important.
A difficult childhood is one of the best ways to develop resilience, according to sociologist Steven Stack in the Journal of Social Psychology. Short men, for example, are less likely than tall men to commit suicide, he claims, because they develop psychological defence skills to deal with the bullies and mickey-taking that their lack of stature attracts. Those who had adversity-free childhoods, on the other hand, may be derailed by setbacks later in life because they were never immunised against adversity.
If you were blessed with a happy childhood, practicing assertive optimism could indeed help you become more resilient. According to research, resilient people take on greater risks; ‘they court failure as well as learn not to fear it.’
And, despite their thick skin, resilient people are more open to others than the average person. It’s all part of the process to bounce back from setbacks.
It’s about taking optimistic risks and believing that individuals will like you. Simply smiling and being friendly can go a long way. It’s an altruistic path to self-interest that, if nothing else, will confirm an age-old adage: adversity can bring out the best in you.
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Optimism and Health Reading Questions
Complete each sentence with the correct ending A-H.
- optimists tend to be unrealistic about human evolution.
- Material wealth does not guarantee happiness.
- Resilience is bred in the midst of adversity.
- Optimism is good for the evolution of humanity.
- good humour is meant as good flexibility.
- feelings of optimism differ according to gender.
- An attitude of optimism is a habit.
- Building resilience requires mental stability under pressure.
- Steven Stack says in his report
- According to the Annual Survey of Clinical Psychology
- The study done by Adweek finds
- The Henley Center’s research reveals
- Brice Pitt has a belief
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Complete the summary below using NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS from Reading Passage for each answer.
A study group from Yale University had discovered that optimism can stretch one’s life length by 6________ years. And another group from Harvard thinks they have found the biological basis – optimists have better 7________ because an optimist outlook boosts one’s 8________. The study on 9________ was cited as evidence in support of this claim.
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Do the following statements reflect the claims of the writer of Reading Passage? Write:
YES if the statement agrees with the writer
NO, if the statement contradicts the writer
NOT GIVEN if there is no information about this in the passage
10. People who are resilient tend to be honest and even have thick skin.
11. It won’t be possible for people who had happy childhoods to practice optimism.
12. Pessimists are less likely to get along with others than optimists are.
13. Optimism has long been recognized to have positive effects on health.
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Optimism and Health Reading Answers
7. LUNG FUNCTION
9. HEART PATIENT
12. NOT GIVEN
13. NOT GIVEN
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