THE RECIPE for leading a long and healthy existence is maintaining a young mindset, being immature from time to time and regularly enjoying a touch of nostalgia, according to a new study.
Researchers who polled 2,000 adults found almost three quarters of Britons believe forgetting you are an adult from time to time is important.
One in four of those revealed they wanted to stay ‘child-like’ as long as possible.
The study found that feeling nostalgic and identifying with those things from our childhood makes us happy.
Psychologist Dr Meg Arroll said: ‘Perceiving ourselves as younger than our age is linked to a more future-orientated outlook, which means that we make better health choices such as engaging in exercise and healthy eating.’
The study also found men are still embracing their inner child well into their twenties by playing video games and enjoying practical jokes.
And it seems men’ don’t ‘mature’ fully until the age of 29.
But women aren’t far behind — only acting like a fully-grown adult once they reach the age of 27.
The research revealed over half of Brits hankered after their childhood and 19 to 25 years of age was identified as the ‘carefree’ years of youth.
One in four of those surveyed said that one of the things they love most about being a parent is that is gives them an excuse to be a big child again and play with toys..
Dr Arroll said: ‘The findings of this survey support previous research that has shown nostalgia boosts our mood — which may be why the majority of survey respondents stated that Christmas was their favourite time of year as this is a time when adults shake off their daily worries and jump into playing games, spending time with loved ones and reconnecting with their inner child.’
She added: ‘The research shows that nostalgia can buffer against depression, boost social connectedness, so doing things/activities from childhood can be important in maintaining health, specifically with regard to social connectedness as isolation is so damaging to health.’
The study, commissioned by Healthspan and carried out via OnePoll.com, found unanimously that being a ‘kidult’ is good for your health — from thinking yourself younger, to indulging in some nostalgia and getting in touch with your inner child.