Personality traits and existential concerns as predictors of the functions of reminiscence in older adults

Philippe Cappeliez, Norm O'Rourke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

58 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examines to what extent personality and existential constructs predict the frequency of reminiscence, in general, and its various functions, in particular. Eighty-nine older adults completed the NEO-Five Factor Inventory, the Life Attitude Profile-Revised, and the Reminiscence Functions Scale. Neuroticism predicted total reminiscence frequency, as well as reminiscence for self-understanding and ruminating about a negative past. Extraversion predicted total reminiscence frequency, as well as reminiscence for generating stimulation, conversation, and maintaining memories of departed loved ones. Openness to experience predicted total reminiscence frequency and reminiscence for addressing life meaning and death. Existential concerns, and in particular low desire to seek new challenges, added significant additional predictive power for total reminiscence frequency and for such uses as generating stimulation, preparing for death, and ruminating about the past. The discussion draws the implications of the finding that the combination of personality traits and existential concerns predicted the overall reminiscence frequency together with the intrapersonal functions of reminiscence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)P116-P123
JournalJournals of Gerontology - Series B Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences
Volume57
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2002
Externally publishedYes

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