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Thinking about death motivates us to do more
Thinking about death can affect the way people behave in life, new research has shown. Carried out by University of Essex PhD student Laura Blackie and her adviser Philip Cozzolino, the study revealed that those who think specifically about their own passing are more likely to demonstrate concern for society - in the form of giving blood.
The research is to be published in Psychological Science - a journal of the Association for Psychological Science - and participants were asked general questions about death before reading about blood donations.
It was found that individuals who had given thought to their own death were willing to give blood regardless of how much it was in need.
Ms Blackie said: "People seem aware that their life is limited. That can be one of the best gifts that we have in life, motivating us to embrace life and embrace goals."
Professor Emmy van Deurzen, Chartered Psychologist and a Fellow of the British Psychological Society, said: "An interesting piece of research demonstrating how the thought of death may make our lives more aware and more socially engaged."
"A good example of the usual paradox: that facing up to death may bring us more to life, whereas avoidance of what is frightening may leave us more isolated and less able to live a worthwhile life."
According to the National Blood Service, 96 per cent of the UK population rely on the other four per cent to donate blood.
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