what_i_believe (what_i_believe) wrote in ideasharing,

A possible difference between living to 100 or not

Today on the news, it was mentioned that the Guinness World Record people have said that the oldest living person on the planet is an Ecuadorian woman. She is 116 years old. Her daughter, who is 79, said that her secret to living to that ripe old age could be her calm disposition.

This got me thinking. If a calm disposition is a personality trait which is inherent in some people, can it be developed in others who are lacking it? Becoming angry is something we all have gone through at some time or another. Yet anger affects us differently and for various reasons. Some of us have less of a tendency to hold back and express our anger as it comes. Others, on the other end, accumulate and build it until it explodes. Still, others internalize it completely with no outer release because they simply don't give themselves permission to do so, as we see in people with anxiety disorders, whereas for other people the situation and circumstances dictate the amount of anger which is released. This latter form is usually what is privileged.

That said, our temperaments and dispositions play a role in forming us as individuals. Though there is opportunity for change at a younger age, I am persuaded that we somehow become prisoners of our identities at an older age. This is where the proverb "you can't teach an old dog new tricks" came about. I wonder if our temperaments don't affect us at an older age, to the point where unhealthy patterns adopted actually become conducive to our demise. Being ourselves, and choosing to follow certain detrimental temperaments that could have been toned down at a young age could possibly be a deciding factor in the difference between living up to 100 or not.

Certain stresses that are easily handled at 25 can perhaps have a more negative effect on our persons were we to be 60 or above. Anger is a powerful emotion. It can lead to high blood pressure, physical pain in our bodies, higher levels of adrenaline and thoughts of injuring others in one way or another. It is often said that anger is experienced as a form of trespass on the part of another person. If some of these issues remain unresolved, they can have devastating effects on the person. Yet how can a relative tell if such patterns are detrimental if the person does not disclose how they felt and to which point it affects them? Older people tend not to talk about their personal problems. And if they do, they do so more out of the need to vent then out of the need to actually change anything in their particular situation. This attitude opens the door to a variety of "unfinished business", meaning issues that can remain unresolved because of the general attitude of the person, simply based on a more difficult temperament and the reinforcement of a person's identity with age.

Could this then be why some of us live up to and past 100 while others do not?

These were the words of What_I_Believe*
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