Thursday, October 23, 2008

Here is the Big Five personality scale with facets that matches the ones mentioned in studies I posted.

NEO-PI-R Ÿ NEO Personality Inventory - Revised

P.T. (Jr.) Costa, R.R. McCrae
Hogrefe Ltd. The Test People, Oxford


The Test

The NEO PI-R is a measure of the five major domains of personality as well as the six facets that define each domain. Taken together, the five domain scales and thirty facet scales of the NEO PI-R facilitate a comprehensive and detailed assessment of normal adult personality. The NEO PI-R is recognized internationally as a gold standard for personality assessment. Today, reputable developers of personality tests for the occupational market will as a matter of course publish data on the relationship of their tests with the five factor model using one form or another of the NEO as the benchmark. The total amount of recent data from high level academic journals concerning the NEO PI-R underpins its quality.

Description of the scale and characteristics

Neuroticism: identifies individuals who are prone to psychological distress

Anxiety: level of free floating anxiety

Angry Hostility: tendency to experience anger and related states such as frustration and bitterness

Depression: tendency to experience feelings of guilt, sadness, despondency and loneliness

Self Consciousness: shyness or social anxiety

Impulsiveness: tendency to act on cravings and urges rather than reining them in and delaying gratificayion

Vulnerability: general susceptibility to stress

Extraversion: quantity and intensity of energy directed outwards into the social world

Warmth: interest in and friendliness towards others

Gregariousness: preference for the company of others

Assertiveness: social ascendancy and forcefulness of expression

Activity: pace of living

Excitement seeking: need for environmental stimulation

Positive Emotion: tendency to experience positive emotions

Openness to Experience: the active seeking and appreciation of experiences for their own sake

Fantasy: receptivity to the inner world of imagination

Aesthetics: appreciation of art and beauty

Feelings: openness to inner feelings and emotions

Actions: openness to new experiences on a practical level

Ideas: intellectual curiosity

Values: readiness to re-examine own values and those of authority figures

Agreeableness: the kinds of interactions an individual prefers from compassion to tough mindedness

Trust: belief in the sincerity and good intentions of others

Straightforwardness: frankness in expression

Altruism: active concern for the welfare of others

Compliance: response to interpersonal conflict

Modesty: tendency to play down own achievements and be humble.

Tender mindedness: attitude of sympathy for others.

Conscientiousness: degree of organization, persistence, control and motivation in goal directed behaviour

Competence: belief in own self efficacy

Order: personal organization

Dutifulness: emphasis placed on importance of fulfilling moral obligations

Achievement striving: need for personal achievement and sense of direction

Self Discipline: capacity to begin tasks and follow through to completion despite boredom or distractions.

Deliberation: tendency to think things through before acting or speaking.

Neuroticism Unexpectedly Shown as Protective Factor in Mortality$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed

1: Psychosom Med. 2005 Sep-Oct;67(5):724-33.

Psychosom Med. 2005 Nov-Dec;67(6):839-40.

Domain and facet personality predictors of all-cause mortality among Medicare patients aged 65 to 100. Weiss A, Costa PT Jr.
Laboratory of Personality and Cognition, National Institute on Aging, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, 5600 Nathan Shock Drive, Baltimore, MD 21224-6825, USA.

OBJECTIVES: Our objectives were to test whether Conscientiousness, the other 4 domains of the Five-Factor Model, and their facets predicted mortality in older, frail individuals. METHODS: Controlling for demographic and health measures, we used Cox regression to test whether the NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness to Experience, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness domains predicted all-cause mortality over 5 years in 1076 65- to 100-year-old participants who took part in a Medicare Demonstration study. Supplementary analyses on 597 participants aged 66 to 102 who were reassessed 2 years later were conducted to determine whether any of the Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI-R) facets were related to mortality. RESULTS: When personality domains were treated as continuous variables, NEO-FFI Neuroticism and Agreeableness were significant protective factors. When personality domains were trichotomized, NEO-FFI Conscientiousness was a protective factor. In a third analysis, Agreeableness was not a significant predictor in a model that included the continuous Neuroticism and trichotomized Conscientiousness variables. Analysis of the NEO-PI-R Neuroticism, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness factors showed that Agreeableness and Conscientiousness were protective and that there was a trend for a similar effect of Neuroticism. Facet-level analyses revealed that the Impulsiveness, Straightforwardness, and Self-Discipline facets of Neuroticism, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness, respectively, were prospectively related to greater survival over a 3-year interval. CONCLUSION: The effects of Neuroticism and Agreeableness on mortality are inconsistent across previous studies. This study indicates that, in a sample of older, frail participants, high Neuroticism and Agreeableness scores are protective and that more specific effects are primarily the result of the Impulsiveness and Straightforwardness facet scales. The Conscientiousness findings are consistent with those in earlier studies and demonstrate the importance of the Self-Discipline facet.

PMID: 16204430 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Conscientious Personality Reduces Risk of Alzheimer Disease and Cognitive Impairment$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed

1: Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2007 Oct;64(10):1204-12.

Conscientiousness and the incidence of Alzheimer disease and mild cognitive impairment. Wilson RS, Schneider JA, Arnold SE, Bienias JL, Bennett DA.
Rush Alzheimer's Disease Center, Rush University Medical Center, 600 S Paulina, Chicago, IL 60612, USA.

CONTEXT: The personality trait of conscientiousness has been related to morbidity and mortality in old age, but its association with the development of Alzheimer disease is not known. OBJECTIVE: To test the hypothesis that a higher level of conscientiousness is associated with decreased risk of Alzheimer disease. DESIGN: Longitudinal clinicopathologic cohort study with up to 12 years of annual follow-up. SETTING: The Religious Orders Study. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 997 older Catholic nuns, priests, and brothers without dementia at enrollment, recruited from more than 40 groups across the United States. At baseline, they completed a standard 12-item measure of conscientiousness. Those who died underwent a uniform neuropathologic evaluation from which previously established measures of amyloid burden, tangle density, Lewy bodies, and chronic cerebral infarction were derived. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer disease and change in previously established measures of global cognition and specific cognitive functions. RESULTS: Conscientiousness scores ranged from 11 to 47 (mean, 34.0; SD, 5.0). During follow-up, 176 people developed Alzheimer disease. In a proportional hazards regression model adjusted for age, sex, and education, a high conscientiousness score (90th percentile) was associated with an 89% reduction in risk of Alzheimer disease compared with a low score (10th percentile). Results were not substantially changed by controlling for other personality traits, activity patterns, vascular conditions, or other risk factors. Conscientiousness was also associated with decreased incidence of mild cognitive impairment and reduced cognitive decline. In those who died and underwent brain autopsy, conscientiousness was unrelated to neuropathologic measures, but it modified the association of neurofibrillary pathologic changes and cerebral infarction with cognition proximate to death. CONCLUSION: Level of conscientiousness is a risk factor for Alzheimer disease.

PMID: 17909133 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

Childhood and Adult Conscientiousness Both Independent Predictors of Mortality$=relatedarticles&logdbfrom=pubmed

1: Health Psychol. 2007 Jul;26(4):428-36.

Personality and mortality risk across the life span: the importance of conscientiousness as a biopsychosocial attribute.

Martin LR, Friedman HS, Schwartz JE.
Department of Psychology, La Sierra University, Riverside, CA 92515-8247, USA.

OBJECTIVE: This study addressed whether personality in childhood and personality in adulthood are independent predictors of mortality risk and the extent to which behavioral and other psychosocial factors can explain observed relationships between personality and mortality risk. DESIGN: This was a prospective longitudinal cohort study of 1,253 male and female Californians over 7 decades (1930-2000). Proportional hazards regressions were the principal analyses. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Mortality risk (in the form of relative hazards) was the primary outcome. Additional tests of mediators and moderators ascertained whether associations between personality and mortality risk remained significant when psychosocial and behavioral variables were statistically controlled. RESULTS: The findings, including a new 14-year additional follow-up in old age, revealed that conscientiousness, measured independently in childhood and adulthood, predicted mortality risk across the full life span. The link from childhood remained robust when adult conscientiousness and certain behavioral variables were controlled. Psychosocial and behavioral variables partly explained the adult conscientiousness-longevity association. CONCLUSION: The findings demonstrate the utility and complexity of modern personality concepts in understanding health and point to conscientiousness as a key underexplored area for future biopsychosocial studies. Copyright 2007 APA.

PMID: 17605562 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

* * *

I was not a conscientious kid. And things look even bleaker when I think about what my room looks like today as an adult. May as well live it up, then!

[Exits stage left with bottle of vodka.]

Facets of Conscientousness and Longevity: High Achievement and Orderliness Strong Predictors of Reduced Mortality

1: Health Psychol. 2008 Sep;27(5):505-12

Do conscientious individuals live longer? A quantitative review.
Kern ML, Friedman HS.
Department of Psychology, University of California, Riverside, CA 82521-0426, USA.

OBJECTIVE: Following up on growing evidence that higher levels of conscientiousness are associated with greater health protection, the authors conducted a meta-analysis of the association between conscientiousness-related traits and longevity. DESIGN: Using a random-effects analysis model, the authors statistically combined 20 independent samples. In addition, the authors used fixed-effects analyses to examine specific facets of conscientiousness and study characteristics as potential moderators of this relationship. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Effect sizes were computed for each individual sample as the correlation coefficient r, based on the relationship between conscientiousness and mortality risk (all-cause mortality risk, longevity, or length of survival). RESULTS: Higher levels of conscientiousness were significantly and positively related to longevity (r = .11, 95% confidence interval = .05-.17). Associations were strongest for the achievement (persistent, industrious) and order (organized, disciplined) facets of conscientiousness. CONCLUSION: Results strongly support the importance of conscientiousness-related traits to health across the life span. Future research and interventions should consider how individual differences in conscientiousness may cause and be shaped by health-relevant biopsychosocial events across many years. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved.

PMID: 18823176 [PubMed - in process]
This is a new story about conscientousness, but it really is old news. Just check our archives!

Secret to a longer life - being conscientious
By Richard Alleyne, Science Correspondent
Last Updated: 6:01pm BST 22/10/2008

Being conscientious not only leads to a more successful life but also a longer one, a new study claims.

Scientists have discovered that high achievers such as company executives, Olympic athletes and even world leaders live on average up to four years longer than the general public.

Researchers believe that being both industrious and scrupulous at the same time appear to be the key to the extra longevity even though the individual's jobs may be more stressful than the average person.

The life-prolonging benefits of a "conscientious life" have come to light from a comparison of 20 previous studies which together matched the behaviour of 8,900 people with the age they died.

Dr Howard Friedman, at the Univeristy of California, analysed the results using a pyschologicial scale of conscientiousness which broke it down into multiple traits, including organisation, thoroughness, reliability, competence, order, dutifulness, ambition, self-discipline, and deliberation.

The results, published in the New Scientist, found that highly conscientious people lived on average two to four years longer than the norm.

This extra margin exceeds the effects of socioeconomic status and intelligence, which are also known to increase longevity.

Dr Friedman, who worked with Dr. Margaret Kern, said conscientious people do not live longer simply because they are boring or cautious, but admits they tend to "live lives that are more stable and less stressful".

"Yes it is true that conscientious folks are less like to smoke or drink to excess or take too many risks," he said.

"But it is also true that conscientious folks lead life patterns that are more stable and less stressful."

The study also found that orderly, responsible and reliable also lived longer.

"One of the studies we included looked at American presidents," said Dr Kern.

The first US president, George Washington, lived to be 67, double the life expectancy there at the time.

"Washington was very conscientious, yet he certainly didn't live a boring life."

* * *

Well in Washington's era, infant mortality was ridiculously high, so that's not "double" the surviving adult life expectancy. As for CEOs and Olympians, aren't they more likely to be physically fit than average? Plus they didn't factor in self-perceived social status among CEOs and Olympians, which is important in longevity. Studies already show that winners of the Nobel prize, especially for Physics, live 2 years longer than those who don't because of the lifelong status boost. Were the nominees any less industrious? I don't think so.

Don't mind me. I'm just being defensive because, well, let's just say whenever I'm posting here, I'm supposed to be doing something else....

Monday, October 20, 2008

Chew Your Food 30 Times For Long Life, Says One Centenarian

Centenarian Dr. Saburo Shochi and Round the World Lecture tour
Submitted by vkraus on Wed, 09/13/2006 - 09:37.

Centenarian on a Round the World Tour

Dr. Saburo Shochi who celebrated his 100th birthday on August 16th is a lifelong educator and specialist in early-childhood education for disabled children. He is the founder of the Shiinomi School (1954) in Fukuoka, Japan, the first established school for physically and mentally challenged children in Japan. A Shiinomi class was also established in China, the first for challenged children.

On his third Round the World Tour, Dr. Shochi has traveled to Shanghai and Beijing, China and Los Angeles. On September 12 at the SGI-USA Community Center in Santa Monica, Calif. Dr. Shochi gave a 90 minute lecture and powerpoint presentation in English on his life and health. He shared that his first two children who were both born with cerebral palsy were his motivation to establish a school for physically and mentally challenged children. He sold his family property and opened the Shiinomi Gakuen in 1954. He led the audience in a baton exercise and performed the “Kurodabushi” dance, a traditional Japanese fan dance. His secret to a healthy long life is to chew each mouthful of food 30 times.

He has written a number of books on childhood education. One recently published is a booklet on Parent and Childhood Toymaking. One of the most emphasized programs at the Shiinomi School is making toys from recycled products such as tissue boxes, film canisters, and empty toilet paper rolls. Dr. Shochi says that handmaking toys stimulates one's brain and creativity. It is especially beneficial for children to be able to make toys with their parents.

Dr. Shochi holds doctorates in medicine and literature. He is an honorary professor of Philosophy and Education. He speaks Russian, Korean, Chinese and English.

He will be traveling to Boston to give a lecture at the Harvard School of Public Health on Monday, September 18. He will also travel to Paris, Switzerland, Italy, Egypt, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Lecture at Harvard School of Public Health, Monday, September 18, 2006

* * *

I wouldn't rule out chewing food slowly, deliberately, and properly, but what struck me is that in spite of the stress of having his beloved children suffer from illnesses, he pressed on and made accomodating them and other children like them his ikigai, or life's purpose--the thing that gets him out of bed in the morning. He must deal with stress well to begin with, but having this motivation certainly must have enhanced that coping mechanism in addition to occupying him with personally satisfying (working with handicapped children typically tops surveys for satisfying professions), meaningful activities. He also has to be in exceptional cognitive shape as a polyglot with advanced education.