Middle-aged women are more optimistic about their present and future than their male counterparts and friends appear to be the key. Researchers looked at men and women aged 45 to 55, and found women were much more likely to have a strong social support network of close friends. The most optimistic women spend about six hours a day socially interacting with people, but time spent with girlfriends was most influential. It's not the number of friends a woman had that was important. The most optimistic women had an inner circle of four to 12 close friends.
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