Chapter 10 examines whether there’s is a relationship between one’s career and longevity. In essence, those with the most job success (defined in multiple ways: money, status, or prestige) were usually the least likely to die young. The chapter talks about how those who were the most successful were usually conscientious. If those who weren’t conscientious and weren’t successful, they were more likely to die young. An interesting point they made in the text was that those who entered a role that they liked early on were more likely to live longer. This is interesting to me because as a senior who has already gone through my job search, I am excited to work on the opportunity that I have but know that will not be the work that I am going to do for the rest of my life, let alone even stay in the same company/industry. Something that the text kind of touched on was how we appraise our stressors. It seems that if we view our stressors as a motivating challenge, we will be ready to take it on and hopefully over time, we will live longer lives. How I appraise my future career has a huge impact on how my job satisfaction. I wish they could have made this more explicit in the text…maybe they couldn’t because this is all correlation?
Chapter 11 confirms that it isn’t exactly practicing religion and one’s faith in it that leads to longevity. Rather, it is the healthy habits and support system that are created and maintained over the life span. For example, Donna’s religious inclinations declined as she age but she had healthy social ties and behaviors. It would be interesting to see the role conscientiousness plays in continuing practicing religion. Was Donna a conscientious person over her life? A critique that I have of the book is that it fails to acknowledge (or lack thereof) the relationship between sociability and conscientiousness. Just speculating, I think there is a tie between being disciplined and maintaining ties. This also should go hand and hand with longevity because maintaining relationships means that you can stay involved/maintain a social support system that can act as a buffer from different stressors.