Can perfectionism kill you?

The major hypothesis of the study was that perfectionism as a personality trait, along with the five-factor personality traits and dispositional optimism, is strongly associated with mortality in late life. After baseline assessment of health and personality traits as predictors of mortality, 450 participants were followed over a period of 6.5 years. Consistent with our hypotheses, findings demonstrated that risk of death was significantly greater for high scorers in perfectionism and neuroticism, compared to low scorers at the time of base line. Conversely, risk of death was significantly lower for high scorers in conscientiousness, extraversion and optimism. Implications for health and longevity are discussed.

Source: “Perfectionism and the Five-factor Personality Traits as Predictors of Mortality in Older Adults” from Journal of Health Psychology

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