The relationship between optimism and health has also been studied with regards to physical symptoms, coping strategies and negative affect for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, and fibromyalgia.It has been found that among individuals with these diseases, optimists are not more likely than pessimists to report pain alleviation due to coping strategies, despite differences in psychological well-being between the two groups.
Subjects read a list of six positive and negative events (e.g."you have been looking for a job unsuccessfully for some time"), and are asked to record a possible cause for the event.and is one of the more popular tests of optimism and pessimism. "If something can go wrong for me, it will." The LOT has been revised twice—once by the original creators (LOT-R) and also by Chang, Maydeu-Olivares, and D'Zurilla as the Extended Life Orientation Test (ELOT).The Revised Life Orientation Test (LOT-R: Scheier, Carver, & Bridges, 1994) consists of 6 items, each scored on a 5-point scale from "Strongly disagree" to "Strongly agree".) is based on the explanatory style model of optimism.Furthermore, the correlation appears to be attributable to coping style: "That is, optimists seem intent on facing problems head-on, taking active and constructive steps to solve their problems; pessimists are more likely to abandon their effort to attain their goals." The study showed that optimism was a strong predictor of the rate of recovery.
Optimists achieved faster results in "behavioral milestones" such as sitting in bed, walking around, etc.
In addition, the measures distinguish attributions for positive and for negative events.
An optimistic person attributes internal, stable, and global explanations to good things.
Theories of optimism include dispositional models, and models of explanatory style.
Methods to measure optimism have been developed within both theoretical systems, such as various forms of the Life Orientation Test, for the original definition of optimism, or the Attributional Style Questionnaire designed to test optimism in terms of explanatory style.
Thus, this study suggests a strong link between optimism and psychological well-being.