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Old 04-20-2014, 02:01 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
13,784 posts, read 23,811,113 times
Reputation: 6195

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Research psychologist Matthew Hertenstein in his 2013 book entitled "The Tell" talks briefly about a "consistent statistical relation between longevity and conscientiousness." Here is his explanation on page 11:

"You know who these highly conscientious people are: they're reliable; they plan ahead, cross their t's and dot their i's, and focus on the task at hand. It turns out that, on average, such people live significantly longer than their disorganized, careless, and late counterparts."

That particular statistical trend is not a major focus of the book; in fact he brings it up mostly to illustrate that there are always exceptions to statistical trends. The least conscientious person we know may have lived to age 95, sort of like the great uncle who smoked like a chimney and lived to a ripe old age.

I had never heard of conscientiousness as a factor in longevity, so I found it surprising. This author (Hertenstein) is very careful with his facts and always analyses just what a given piece of research proves and doesn't prove, or perhaps just tantalizingly suggests. So I believe he wouldn't have brought up the conscientiousness-longevity connection (even in passing as is the case) unless it was considered a solid one.

Disclosure of possible bias on my part: I am accurately described in the author's quote - reliable, plan ahead, cross my t's and dot my i's.
Actually, this was disclosed a few years ago in a study spanning 80 years:

Cheerfulness, optimism, extroversion and sociability may make life more enjoyable, but they won’t necessarily extend it, Howard S. Friedman and Leslie R. Martin found in a study that covered eight decades. The key traits are prudence and persistence. “The findings clearly revealed that the best childhood personality predictor of longevity was conscientiousness,” they write, “the qualities of a prudent, persistent, well-organized person, like a scientist-professor — somewhat obsessive and not at all carefree.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/19/sc...anted=all&_r=0
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Old 04-20-2014, 02:32 PM
 
Location: Near a river
16,042 posts, read 18,978,143 times
Reputation: 15649
Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraC View Post
I read a long time ago that married people live longer. My guess is that it has nothing to do with marriage itself but the fact that someone else lives with you and can influence you seeing a doctor and/or in emergencies can get you to the hospital or get help.
Or maybe because fighting keeps you sharp and on your toes, etc. May the best partner win, to the death. LOL.
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Old 04-20-2014, 05:27 PM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
13,668 posts, read 8,580,903 times
Reputation: 19868
I'd love to contribute to this fascinating thread, but I am stuck back with the guy who ate exactly 6 Pringles every day.


6.



I'm sorry.... I just can't get past it.

I'm going to bed, now.
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Old 04-20-2014, 06:42 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,740,386 times
Reputation: 32304
Quote:
Originally Posted by NewToCA View Post
Actually, this was disclosed a few years ago in a study spanning 80 years:

Cheerfulness, optimism, extroversion and sociability may make life more enjoyable, but they won’t necessarily extend it, Howard S. Friedman and Leslie R. Martin found in a study that covered eight decades. The key traits are prudence and persistence. “The findings clearly revealed that the best childhood personality predictor of longevity was conscientiousness,” they write, “the qualities of a prudent, persistent, well-organized person, like a scientist-professor — somewhat obsessive and not at all carefree.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/19/sc...anted=all&_r=0
Thanks. I was hoping someone would come up with the study I found alluded to in the book by Hertenstein.

Edited to add: I read the New York Times article you linked and it is very good. It does a good job of getting at some of the nuances and complexities of the matter within the space limitations of a newspaper article. Indeed, I am motivated to read the book.

Last edited by Escort Rider; 04-20-2014 at 06:55 PM..
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Old 04-20-2014, 06:46 PM
 
Location: too far from the sea
19,839 posts, read 18,861,423 times
Reputation: 33746
Quote:
Originally Posted by Listener2307 View Post
I'd love to contribute to this fascinating thread, but I am stuck back with the guy who ate exactly 6 Pringles every day.


6.



I'm sorry.... I just can't get past it.

I'm going to bed, now.
That was my late cousin in the UK. lol. And he would have been the first to laugh about it. He was a genealogist in retirement and kept meticulous records. He knew my family better than I did. He enjoyed being organized. He survived TB twice, long before antibiotics were developed but it left him with a limp. He overcame. Although much of his childhood was spent in hospitals, he studied on his own, then went to college and then got a master's degree--back in the days when few people in the UK did. He taught school for 35 years and after he retired he said he never looked back. On with the next part of his life.

Persistent, optimistic, organized, quick witted, interested and knowledgeable in everything. In his 80s he learned to use a computer and soon he had an online world wide fan club. What a character. He'd love knowing that he made you laugh--and I bet he'd have something witty to say about it. You can laugh at him or with him---that's fine---but if you ever took it too far, you would also live to regret it.
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Old 04-20-2014, 06:50 PM
 
48,516 posts, read 83,943,432 times
Reputation: 18050
Not a surprise to many I would think. The same type also is more likely to be same about health and problems to catch them early. There is always the exception but I won't bet on it personally .Being 66 now I have seen both types and made my observation that convinces me.
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Old 04-20-2014, 06:54 PM
 
26,104 posts, read 28,506,784 times
Reputation: 24809
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Research psychologist Matthew Hertenstein in his 2013 book entitled "The Tell" talks briefly about a "consistent statistical relation between longevity and conscientiousness." Here is his explanation on page 11:

"You know who these highly conscientious people are: they're reliable; they plan ahead, cross their t's and dot their i's, and focus on the task at hand. It turns out that, on average, such people live significantly longer than their disorganized, careless, and late counterparts."

That particular statistical trend is not a major focus of the book; in fact he brings it up mostly to illustrate that there are always exceptions to statistical trends. The least conscientious person we know may have lived to age 95, sort of like the great uncle who smoked like a chimney and lived to a ripe old age.

I had never heard of conscientiousness as a factor in longevity, so I found it surprising. This author (Hertenstein) is very careful with his facts and always analyses just what a given piece of research proves and doesn't prove, or perhaps just tantalizingly suggests. So I believe he wouldn't have brought up the conscientiousness-longevity connection (even in passing as is the case) unless it was considered a solid one.

Disclosure of possible bias on my part: I am accurately described in the author's quote - reliable, plan ahead, cross my t's and dot my i's.
Yes, there was another book that came out a few years ago called The Longevity Project that pretty much said the same thing.

The Longevity Project: Surprising Discoveries for Health and Long Life from the Landmark Eight-Decade Study: Howard S. Friedman, Leslie R. Martin: Amazon.com: Books

This is one reason why I nag people about stuff like not knowing how to spell four letter words on CD posts. It's not just about not knowing how to spell. It's the "I don't care" unconscientious attitude about it....and that kind of attitude spills over into everything you do, including your health habits, because about 70% of health problems are related to unhealthy habits.
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Old 04-20-2014, 06:57 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,740,386 times
Reputation: 32304
Quote:
Originally Posted by mysticaltyger View Post
Yes, there was another book that came out a few years ago called The Longevity Project that pretty much said the same thing.

The Longevity Project: Surprising Discoveries for Health and Long Life from the Landmark Eight-Decade Study: Howard S. Friedman, Leslie R. Martin: Amazon.com: Books
Yes! That's the book which the New York Times article (see post #21) is about.
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Old 04-20-2014, 07:08 PM
 
26,104 posts, read 28,506,784 times
Reputation: 24809
Quote:
Originally Posted by foglover View Post
On the low end of the dopamine spectrum, you have apathy and lack of motivation. I'm telling ya, more and more I am convinced we are not much more than the sum of our biochemistry. Sacrilegious thought, eh?.
I agree with everything you said up to this point...The thing is WE DO have some control over our biochemistry. Things like meditation, prayer, and yoga have a major effect on our brains, especially when done regularly.

www.revolutionofspirit.com
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Old 04-20-2014, 07:10 PM
 
26,104 posts, read 28,506,784 times
Reputation: 24809
Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraC View Post
I read a long time ago that married people live longer. My guess is that it has nothing to do with marriage itself but the fact that someone else lives with you and can influence you seeing a doctor and/or in emergencies can get you to the hospital or get help.
That's part of it. But there are also positive biological effects being with someone, at least if you're in a reasonably happy marriage.
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