I just read a news story about the link between cynicism and dementia (link to story at bottom). I find it highly interesting because for the most part, everyone I meet in public accounting, especially at my B4 firm, is extremely cynical. In the article, several people in their 70's were interviewed to determine their level of cynicism, and then interviewed a few years later to see if they had dementia. Note that this might not be the most scientific of studies if you get down to brass tacks of sample size, control groups, etc. but it does raise some good questions.
Per the article, the definition of cynicism is "having distrust or believing that others are mainly motivated by selfish concerns."
I am not a naturally cynical person. In fact, I am probably overly naive most of the time, and for all matters not related to my job. I have however learned to be extremely cynical at work, mostly through personal experiences where my naivety/inherent trust and belief that others are not that selfish has come at my detriment one too many times.
So I ask you, oh loyal GC readers…how cynical are you? Are we all going to be running around a bunch of demented elderly because of our careers? If you aren't cynical to a fault, how do remain successful in your B4 (or public accounting) profession?
[Check the full article here: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2014/05/29/cynicism-linked-to-increased-risk-for-dementia/]