Smiling retired man on suburban streetWe all know that a positive outlook can have an immense effect on your quality of life. If you’re looking for silver linings, you’ll generally find them - if all you look for are clouds, that’s what you’ll see.

This can become even more important during retirement. Seniors who work hard to maintain a positive outlook during this major life change can reap real, concrete benefits.

You’ll save more money

How can staying upbeat help you conserve your retirement fund?

Simply put, if you’re not giving in to boredom and negative thinking, you’re less likely to go on spending sprees to try and make yourself feel better. People who feel content and happy with their lives are far more likely to make rational, rather than emotional, financial decisions because they’re not using their funds to try and fill a void.

You’ll make more friends

We all know someone who always has something negative to say - someone who can find the downside to everything.

These aren’t exactly the people we all rush out to spend time with.

Cultivating a positive outlook will make you a much more attractive friend, helping you develop new friendships as well as keep and improve old ones. This is especially important during retirement, as so many retirees report feeling isolated and depressed once they make the transition. Maintaining an active social life is vital to staying healthy in both mind and body.

You’ll live longer

It’s a proven fact that people who are happier live longer than those who are chronically unhappy.

This is true among retirees, too - according to USA Today, retirees who had a positive view of retirement, seeing it as an opportunity for growth, lived longer than retirees who reported having negative retirement stereotypes.

You’ll have more to give

One of the most fulfilling things to do during retirement is to give back to your community. It’s hard to do this, however, when you’re deep in negative thoughts. Negative thinking leads people to want to isolate themselves, and withdraw from the people they love, rather than engage with others (which is, of course, exactly what people need most when they’re feeling low!).

By cultivating positivity, you gain the emotional, physical, and mental resources we need in order to get out and help others. Whether it’s through volunteering during a clothes drive, or mentoring a young person, giving back will help you feel better about yourself and what you’re doing with your retirement - which, in turn, will add to your feelings of positivity.

You’ll have more control over your daily life

Because happier people are more engaged with life in general, retirees who have a positive outlook are more likely to be able to make their own choices about how they spend their time, where they live, what they eat, and the other hundreds of small decisions we make on a daily basis.

This isn’t to say that a positive outlook can protect you from a dangerous fall, or from developing a serious illness. However, it can help you feel more in control of your life and life circumstances, no matter what may befall you. This in itself is a contributor to happiness - it’s a kind of positive feedback loop.

During retirement, maintaining a positive outlook is more important than ever. For more on creating a happy, healthy retirement, read “5 Ways to Prepare for a Happy, Healthy Retirement.”