HOW TO FIND OUT HOW LONG YOU WILL LIVE

If you want to know how long you will live, ask your closest friends to describe your personality. The personality you have developed by your 20s can predict how long you will live across 75 years, and your peers are far better than you are at recognizing these personality traits, according to a study from researchers at Washington University in St. Louis. Think your personality is set in stone? Think again. Find out how five key personality traits may change as we age. "You expect your friends to be inclined to see you in a positive manner, but they also are keen observers of the personality traits that could send you to an early grave," explained lead study author and psychology professor Dr. Joshua Jackson.

Here are the five basic personality traits:

Neuroticism
A tendency to experience unpleasant emotions, such as anxiety, anger or depression.

Extraversion
Energy and the tendency to seek stimulation and the company of others.

Agreeableness
A tendency to be compassionate and cooperative rather than suspicious and antagonistic towards others.

Conscientiousness
A tendency to show self-discipline, act dutifully and aim for achievement.

Openness to experience
Appreciation for art, emotion, adventure and unusual ideas; imaginative and curious.

Who lives the longest? Men who are seen by their friends as being open to experience and conscientious. Women who are seen by their friends as high on emotional stability (the opposite of neuroticism) and agreeableness. It's no secret that a person's personality traits can have an impact on health. Traits such as depression and anger have been linked to an increased risk of various diseases and health concerns, including an early death. Men who are conscientious are more likely to eat right, stick with an exercise routine and avoid risks, such as driving without a seat belt. Women who are emotionally stable may be better at fighting off anger, anxiety and depression.

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