Chapter 10 details how careers and success intertwine with the prevailing theme that conscientiousness is the key to longevity. The chapter confirms that those who are more successful in their career are more likely to live a long life. This makes sense from a socioeconomic standpoint, but on the other hand, it deviates from book’s tendency to equate stress with a shorter life. When it comes to career success, the study showed that taking on more work and stress, if resulting in linear career progress, had a positive effect on life expectancy. The chapter also mentioned that those who stayed productive also tended to be those who lived longer, which made me think of my ever busy grandfather, who even in retirement is one of the healthiest people I know and never allows himself to get lazy and will find something that needs to be done. The chapter also tried to reassure college students that picking the perfect career for our personality is not the key to longevity, but since success and career satisfaction is, I am personally not any less nervous about the future.
Religion was the focus of chapter 11, and the findings generally summarize to religious women tend to have traits that lead to longevity, while men’s religious involvement was not a prominent enough factor to have a large effect. This made me wonder much like I did with the gender disparity last week, is this difference the result of the time period? The books continues to note that many of the women in the study didn’t have career’s due to the time period, and the time period also has a large effect on why the husband’s happiness is so important for the couple’s longevity and health. Many religions outline the qualities and duties of a good wife and often those match the expectations of a wife during the time of the study, is there any correlation there? Or is it possible that the religious women, who had the combined traits that led to a long life, also have marital benefits from those traits? The gender disparity in the chapter on marriage and that existing in the one on religion make me wonder if they are connected, since both chapters had very distinct gender differences for their entirety.